Why You’re Missing Out On 46% Of Your Leads
One of the biggest drains on your business as a law firm is your intake process. Chances are, you or someone at your firm knows exactly where every marketing dollar is being spent and what channels are generating the most leads. And chances are, you’re a rock star once you bring in a potential client. But the actual intake process for many law firms is sorely lacking.
At Ngage, we keep a close eye on conversion numbers of all kinds. After all, our #1 concern is getting you as many qualified leads as possible. The more leads you are able to get, the better for us. But there’s one particular fact that is pretty eye-opening. According to our data:
46% of phone calls to law firms go unanswered.
You read that right. Almost one out of every two phone calls either reach a voicemail, a busy signal, or in many cases are immediately put on hold. These are hot leads, live clients who are ready to talk to you on the phone, and they can’t.
There are several studies (including the one in the section below) that discuss the importance of answering that initial phone call and how much more difficult it becomes to reach someone the longer it takes to follow up.
Over the next few months, we’ll be sharing best practices on how to follow up with and convert inbound leads. Today, the focus is on the importance of phone coverage.
You need some method of having a meaningful interaction with every person who contacts your firm as immediately as the situation permits.
- Meaningful Interaction: This is the foundation. The person who contacted you needs to consider their discussion with you meaningful enough that they stop shopping around and hire you. The passing of time and low quality interactions both erode this foundation.Responding to a high quality live chat like Ngage is only the first step, and it doesn’t cover interactions with people who call your firm on the phone or contact you via email.
- Every Person Who Contacts Your Firm: This means regardless of what time they call you. You absolutely cannot be understaffed during peak hours. And almost 40% of people who contact your firm do so after-hours, so you’re missing opportunities if you have no coverage during those times. If you don’t have the internal resources to staff for after-hours, there are companies who can help take calls for you. Talk to us and we can point you in the right direction.
- As Soon as the Situation Permits: If a person fills out your contact form, chats, or emails you, they need to be followed up within less than five minutes. Multiple studies have confirmed that the longer you take to follow up with someone, the less likely it is you will turn them into a client.
All this may be easier said than done. If you need some help getting pointed in the right direction, contact us and we’ll do all we can to help.
– Alex Hambrick, VP Ngage Live Chat
If you’re reading this and you’re an attorney, I’d say there’s a good chance you’re wasting money every day. That is easy to do when you are going through the daily shuffle of practicing law, instead of closely keeping track of the numbers that actually make you money. But that excuse will only take you so far. You have the Internet, you have libraries of resources available to you, and you have other successful attorneys who are willing to share with you how they run their practices. In this day and age it’s easy for attorneys to implement efficiencies in their processes, but some people don’t. There are a lot of extremely common mistakes that are being made, but three stand out as being particularly bad because they are so easy to fix.
1. Designing Your Website for You, Not Your Clients
Unless you are living in 1993, you have a website. Yes, I know that your #1 source of clients is from referrals. It should be, same as everyone else. If it is not referrals then you are doing something wrong in that arena. That being said, you should know that you cannot ignore the web. If you have made it that far, you’ve probably spent thousands of dollars, if not tens of thousands of dollars, on your website. And you have probably shuffled through three or four different website providers and spent lots of money with each of them. But unless you design your site the right way, you will be wasting anywhere from 25% to 100% of your money.
There is a lot of research out there about web design and how to make your website convert better. There’s also talk about how personality types of potential buyers can influence conversion rate, and the consensus seems to be that there are four major buying types. As such, it’s not enough just to say, “Okay, I’m going to design my site for my clients, not for me.” You have to make sure your site caters to your different types of clients and not just one group. You can read more about these buying habits here.
2. Not Following Up Quickly or Consistently Enough
How quickly do you respond to potential clients when they contact you? If your answer isn’t “literally immediately,” you are doing it wrong. You are four times as likely to get in contact with someone if you call them within five minutes versus within five hours, not to mention waiting a day, or overnight. Even if you think you are pretty good about returning calls during business hours, that’s not enough. 40% of contacts now come in after hours, so if your phone goes to voicemail after 5PM, you can wave goodbye to 40% of your business.
Answering services are a great option, they aren’t that expensive, they get the job done, and they aren’t anywhere as bad as people make them out to be. Stop saying, “I don’t want to be that type of law firm,” unless you believe that the only thing your firm has to offer potential clients is the fact that you have a secretary who answers the phone rather than an operator.
You are probably thinking, “Not my firm…we are on top of things.” That alone is one of the biggest flaws that I see. Everyone thinks they have their intake nailed down without really keeping close track of the numbers. Your intake is made up of humans. Humans are naturally lazy, and they make mistakes. Unless you are actively tracking their numbers closely and comparing them, you are without a doubt losing cases. This always reveals itself when the intake team suddenly finds out its being monitored — for some strange reason the intake numbers get better.
Here’s what it comes down to. You are spending lots of money and lots of time to get people to call your firm. Every time you miss a call or don’t follow up in time, you have just wasted that money. I have seen firms literally double the number of files they open in a month without spending a single extra dime on advertising, without hiring a single extra person, simply by making their processes better. They have not all of a sudden become better lawyers. Paying attention to the details will account for a major change, simply because you will be doing what the other firms are not willing to do.
3. Letting your Website Stagnate
I see way too many lawyers who treat their websites like it’s still 2005. Unless marketing is your passion (and there’s nothing wrong with that), stop trying to do SEO yourself. Google is changing too fast to keep up with it on your own. Stop avoiding PPC. Google wouldn’t be a billion dollar company if their advertisements didn’t work.
Just look at other attorneys in your area. I’d be willing to bet you that at least five out of your top ten competitors are using live chat. Ngage Live alone has over 5000 lawyer websites using live chat. There are countless other live chat companies and I can’t even guess how many clients they have between them all.
If you need help implementing any of the fixes that I’ve suggested, give us a call. You may be thinking, “I’m fine where I am right now.” Are you? Do you truly not want to bring on more cases? Or, do you not want the ability to pick and choose from the cases that you actually want and make you money? We want to help you succeed. If we can’t help you we will point you in the direction of someone who can.
This week we took a look at traffic from the past 30 days for 5000+ URLS that utilize Ngage Live Chat in order to see the breakdown of desktop vs. mobile traffic. Currently, 64.46% of web traffic drives through traditional desktop/laptop devices while 35.54% of traffic comes from mobile devices (27.62% mobile phones / 7.92% tablets).
We find this information to be pretty compelling.
Our operations team is constantly working to refine our service with respect to constantly changing technological demands. As such, making sure that Ngage Live chat works seamlessly with mobile technology, and having a strategy to convert mobile visitors, is one of our top priorities.
Our data show that people using mobile devices tend to browse the web at a much faster pace than people on a personal computer, and because of this, we tailor our chat approach to each visitor based on the type of device that they are using. When someone using a mobile device initiates a chat with an Ngage Live operator, the operator is notified that the visitor is using a mobile device, which prompts the operator to conduct the chat in a slightly different manner than he or she would if the visitor were chatting from a desktop. We have found this varied approach to yield much better results for this specific type of chat, thus helping you turn more visitors to your website into clients.
For more information about how we can help you convert a higher percentage of your website visitors into clients, give us a call, or simply chat us up.
Ngage Live Chat will be in attendance for the Auto Crash Litigation 3.0 hosted by 360 Advocacy in Chicago, IL on September 28 -29. Come say hello to Graham Smith and Joel Davis and make sure to pepper them with all your tough questions about live chat and where to eat while in town (the best steak house in Chicago debate is one they both have strong opinions on).
Ngage Live Chat will be in attendance for the American Association for Justice Annual Conference in Baltimore, Maryland on July 26th through July 30th. Come meet Danielle Dallaire and Tom Paci and make sure to pepper them with all your tough questions about converting visitors into clients from your website; and find out why over 3000 legal websites use Ngage Live Chat.
Ngage Live Chat is happy to announce that as of Monday (June 2 2014) we are now offering around the clock 24/7 coverage for Spanish chat. Previously we only offered Spanish chat during US business hours. According to a study published by Pew Research Center, “37.6 million persons ages 5 years and older speak Spanish at home” making Spanish the “most spoken non-english language in the US.
Adding Spanish live chat to your website will help you serve the fastest growing demographic in the US.
If you don’t currently have spanish chat as an option on your website, contact your account manager or simply call us at 877-912-8668 (or chat with us) and we’ll get you set up.
Come meet Ngage Account Managers Danielle Dallaire and Tom Swanson in Indianapolis, IN for the National Organization of Social Security Claimant’s Representatives (NOSSCR) 2014 Spring Conference from May 14-17 in the JW Marriott. The conference boasts a variety of workshops and circuit roundtables. Attorneys share knowledge, experience, and learn the latest tips and suggestions to assist with obtaining a successful appeal.
Tom Paci and Chris Massaro will be attending the Radius of Influence Conference, hosted by Claris from May 7 – 10 in Clearwater Beach at the Sand Pearl Resort. The event focuses on ways to improve your business and with feature speakers on a variety of topics related to social media and marketing. Stop by to see Tom and Chris to discuss how Ngage Live Chat can help all of your marketing by increasing conversion rate.
Come meet Amie Portis and Chris Massaro of Ngage and learn how Ngage Live Chat can help improve your online marketing. Avvo will be hosting Lawyernomics 2014 from April 23-25 in Las Vegas at the Venetian. The event is 3 days of expert speakers providing ideas and knowledge of how to take your business to the next level. We hope to see you there.