Personal Injury Consumers and the Power of the Mobile Phone
Someone is hurt. Whether an accident on the job or a botched medical procedure, they’re suffering both physically and mentally. For them, the process of finding and calling an attorney is a necessity, one that they didn’t plan in the first place. Because of that, they often act quickly.
FindLaw’s new personal injury legal consumer report studies how these emotions affect their decisions when researching attorneys online. Our research is based on FindLaw’s 2018 U.S. Consumer Legal Needs survey.
One interesting factor is that P.I. consumers are dependent on their mobile phones. (Let’s face it, who isn’t?) More than 60 percent of personal injury consumers use a mobile device for legal searches and 48 percent use their cell phone to contact a lawyer. If you’re a personal injury attorney, understanding the mobile tendency of your prospects can help you find more clients in a marketplace crowded with law firm options.
If your website is not mobile-optimized, it’s past time to invest in the upgrade. Converting to a mobile-first website is not only good for your on-the-go prospect, it will help your SEO efforts both on a phone and on a laptop. Now that Google analyzes mobile websites for their search results, you can’t afford to remain in a desktop-only frame of mind.
Your mobile website messaging should not beat around the bush. Your prospects are busy. Because they’re searching for you on their mobile phone, they don’t have time for a lot of fluff or legalese. From the home page to bio to blog, your website copy should reflect the consumer’s sense of urgency. They want to quickly know your case record and a little about you before making that call.
Easy mobile contact
Speaking of phone calls, your mobile site should include the option for consumers to call or email you with the click of a button. FindLaw found that 79 percent of personal injury victims contacted an attorney as their first action and 66 percent did so within a week of their incident. They move quickly and they’re not tied down to a desktop. That’s why you need to provide a one-touch option for them to connect. It could be the thing they need to stop their research and reach out to you.
Think of it this way: Someone finds your website on their phone, but without a click-to-call option, they’d need to find your phone number, possibly write it down and then dial manually. Or, they could save time by visiting the next law firm in their search results who has click-to-call and move on with their situation.
Your site needs speed
Legal consumers will probably leave your mobile website if your site loads slowly. Google found that 61 percent of users probably won’t return to a website if it takes too much time to load. How long is that? Think a matter of seconds. In a 2017 post, Google revealed that bounce rates (those website viewers who leave after only visiting one page) increase 32 percent if your site takes three seconds to load and rise to 90 percent if that number is more than five seconds.
There are many ways to measure site speed. You should ask your website provider how your site stacks up to that “three-second” rule using both Google metrics and “waterfall” tools to help you gauge speed at a more holistic level. (For more information, check out our white paper on mobile speed.)
Be where they are
Suppose you have a mobile website and even have a click-to-call button at the top of the page. You’re now only a quarter of the way there. Why? Because Safari or Chrome are only two of the many apps that mobile users spend time on. Your prospect may open Google maps to find the closest attorney to their location, check social media to take a break from their research or open Yelp for reviews about your law firm before calling you.
When it comes to attracting the mobile P.I. consumer, it’s time to think integrated. Assess your digital marketing first by searching all the apps you would use to find a good restaurant. Now use those same apps to find your law firm. Does your name show up prominently on a Google Maps search? Do you have enough reviews on rating sites? Are you on Facebook keeping up with current events and how they affect your practice? Once you’ve mastered the mobile site, it’s time to address these additional opportunities.
There’s no question that personal injury clients move quickly to find the help they’re looking for. To keep up, your firm needs to think at the speed they do and to market on platforms that capture their urgency.
For more information and an in-depth look at P.I. consumers, download FindLaw’s report here.