The Surprising Truth About Lawyer and Accounting Websites

accounting websites

You might think a website for a lawyer, accountant, or other service professional should be all about the firm’s offerings. Wouldn’t visitors want to see a list of the firm’s services – whether real estate law, bankruptcy, or corporate tax – and what types of clients they take in?

Sure, potential clients need to know this. But the more important purpose of lawyer and accounting websites is to sell the lawyer or accountant himself. A website that portrays a likable, professional, trustworthy professional will be far more effective than one that simply lists their areas of specialty and various degrees.

But how does a site manage to convey the professional’s personality?

Conversational copy is one important way; photos of the staff and office do a nice job of adding to the profile; and a blog is useful for giving a better sense of the provider.

But easily, the number one strategy for selling potential clients on a lawyer or accountant’s character – the method that leaves great text, pretty pictures, and interesting blogs in the dust – is promotional video.

Does It Need to “Go Viral”?

People sometimes have the wrong idea about video. They imagine that to be successful, a video has to “go viral” because it’s funny, controversial, or features something odd or noteworthy.

With this conception of video, the “buttoned-up” fields of accounting and legal services will seem like altogether the wrong environment for promotional clips.

But a one-minute video on an accountant or lawyer’s home page does NOT need to be funny or noteworthy. In fact, in most cases, such a tone would be detrimental.

When folks visit lawyer and accounting websites, they want to see whether the provider is trustworthy – a person of integrity who can help them tackle life’s heavy challenges, such as facing an audit, filing for divorce, or planning their estate. The video doesn’t need to make them laugh or click “share.”

Like Stopping in for a Visit

When a new store opens, it’s natural to swing by to check it out. By the same token, if you’re planning to have your anniversary party at a local restaurant, you obviously want to have a meal there first to evaluate its atmosphere.

But what about service professionals? How do you get a sense of their office space, their demeanor, and the general culture of the practice? Making an appointment to meet with the lawyer or accountant is a hassle, not to mention almost impossible if services are needed immediately.

A promotional video, on the other hand, serves this purpose very nicely, and it is eminently convenient. It takes just a minute, and it’s available anywhere, anytime – even in the middle of the night from your smartphone. And because people make important decisions based on emotion and in a very short amount of time, one minute of seeing the person talking, smiling, and showing off the office is really all it takes.

Tips for a Successful Service Professional Video

If you’re a service professional considering the use of  a promotional video on your website, keep these points in mind:

  • The video acts as a powerful client recruitment tool.
  • It also serves to remind current and former clients of your strengths, almost like a sound bite or tagline.
  • If you’re concerned that you’re not scintillating enough, remember this marketing secret: you don’t have to appeal to everyone. Just be yourself and see which prospects respond.
  • Be reassuring, like you’re talking to your most skittish client.

When you post a video on your firm’s website, you take advantage of the best the web has to offer for client attraction. Even better, such videos aren’t widely used yet on lawyer and accounting websites. Not only will you be an early adopter who portrays themselves as forward looking and progressive, but you’ll also stand apart from the competition!


This guest post was written by Brian O’Connell who is CEO of CPA Site Solutions, a web design firm providing accounting websites and other marketing services to accountants, CPAs, bookkeepers, and tax preparers nationwide.