City firm Berwin Leighton Paisner and international firm DLA Piper have scored the highest in a survey of legal websites – which the authors say reveals that law firms have much to learn from other sectors.
Of 30 law firms surveyed by Last Exit, a digital strategy agency which benchmarks websites in different business areas, 18 had sites rated as mediocre and 12 as good. None achieved an excellent rating.
Magic circle firm Allen & Overy was runner-up behind the joint winners, but the rest of the magic circle faired poorly, with Freshfields, Slaughter and May, Clifford Chance and Linklaters all rated as mediocre.
Kent Valentine, Last Exit’s engagement director, said that law firms are ‘quite behind’ businesses such as utilities in the way they design websites.
Visitors to sites are often faced with too much information that is poorly presented, he said. ‘It’s a confusing experience trying to navigate masses of information that is not clearly signposted.’
The legal sector is in danger of appearing out of touch and overly introspective if its web presences do not move with the times, he said, blaming the management structure of parts of the sector.
‘Law firms don’t always listen to their marketing department,’ Valentine added.