Gone are the days of searching through the Yellow Pages for a personal injury attorney. Say goodbye to asking your friends and family for legal recommendations. Forget just walking up to the nearest law firm and asking for a consultation.
A recent survey conducted by FindLaw.com and Thomson Reuters reveals that people are turning to the Internet when they need a lawyer or legal representation.
This survey is a follow-up to one conducted almost a decade ago in 2005, where only 7% of participants said they would use the Internet first to look for a lawyer. In 2014, however, a whopping 38% of participants listed the Internet as their first choice.
In 2005, 65% of people said they asked friends and relatives for recommendations first. This number dropped drastically to only 29% in 2014.
Of course, it shouldn’t surprise anyone that the Internet is
taking over the world becoming everyone’s first choice in searches for professional services. The Internet allows people to search for lawyers in specific areas, with specific credentials, and specific practice areas. The Internet also allows for a more complete review of the lawyer (or professional service); rather than biased information from a family member or friend, you can read reviews from numerous clients to get an idea of what to expect from the lawyer.
“The Internet provides a faster, easier, and more thorough method to find an attorney, compared with the alternatives,” said Stephen Noel, vice president of strategic development and audience at Thomson Reuters, in a statement. “Friends or relatives may only know a limited number of attorneys, and those attorneys may not specialize in the areas of law where help is needed.”
While mobile- and tablet-searches aren’t currently as dominant as desktop or laptop browsing, Leonard Lee of FindLaw.com doesn’t expect it to stay that way.
“Given the dramatic rise in consumer preferences for using the Internet to find and research a lawyer, we expect a similar rise in the use of mobile for that purpose in coming years, as people do more of their Web searching from tablets and smartphones,” he said.
So what does this mean for your law firm?
In order to take advantage of the findings of this survey, an online marketing company can help. At authenticWEB, we have helped personal injury attorneys get to the top of competitive searches through SEO, designed highly converting, responsive websites and created thousands of authentic videos. Most important, we have helped them improve the number and quality of cases.
The Internet is clearly the future, and you cannot afford to be left idling behind while your competitors surge ahead and steal away your clients. It’s always better to be ahead of the game rather than watching from the bleachers!