We redesigned a website for a network of law firms.
Synergylaw is a network of law firms with three offices in Belgium. They offer a wide range of professional law services and have been in business since 2009. After careful review of their services and client feedback, they realized the website was failing to communicate effectively with their users and missing key features. They came to us for help in upgrading the existing web site to look more professional and attractive.
The existing website looked outdated visually and was functionally far behind modern standards. It was not adaptive to mobile devices, didn’t engage in any way with new visitors or existing users. There was no way to format published content, emphasize important news, or attach any media (image, video, document). A critical problem among these issues was a lack of support for multiple users to maintain the content. As a result, one person was in charge of maintaining the website, which became increasingly difficult as the firm and it’s associated needs grew bigger.
They were excited to partner with us in solving these issues and also benefit from the functionality of our in-house developed CMS.
We started by prototyping the base for the website and content presentation. We had to factor in device-level responsiveness and build for visual continuity at every stage. Functionality and media presentation were also adjusted according to the device. An example of this versatility include the menu collapsing into an expandable, drop-down menu when triggered by smaller devices. We also repositioned the grid view into a single column stack and hid less critical blocks to make mobile viewing more user-friendly.
We placed a high level of attention to detail when creating the visual design as maintaining brand image was critical to Synergylaw. A crisp and professional theme was the main target for the website and we set upon shaping that impression. A pinch of humor was also interjected throughout the look to add some approachability and comfort for the user.
The Home page gives a brief introduction followed by a sliding banner introducing every lawyer in the network. We also consolidated news and events sections down to three items in order to give the user a quick snapshot of what to expect.
The Services page was set separately in the navigation menu, improving from the previous setup which had it hidden under the Office section. We also categorized each field of expertise with associated graphics to give the content quick visual indicators.
For the upgrade, Synergylaw needed improved ease-of-use for site management. The existing setup required editing files manually and uploading them to the server; a cumbersome process. Only one person was technically capable of performing these duties and it increasingly became unmanageable as the network grew larger. Our solution was to extend our in-house developed CMS to fit Synergylaw’s needs. The off-the-shelf features included hierarchal user management, access control and comprehensive media management. These features were implemented into the new website which addressed several needs and simultaneously cut down on development costs.
One functionality issue that was lacking related to every newly created article needing editor clearance. This article also required a time span in order to manage when it goes live and when it expires from view. The absence of a set time span also allowed for stickying of articles. These features were custom implemented for the website.
A cool new feature that was implemented via the CMS involved having each person in Synergylaw network get their own manageable profile page with professional biography, field of expertise and contact information.
Besides providing law based services, Synergylaw also organizes events and conferences. They wanted an effective outreach tool to target their clients and unique site visitors. A newsletter is not only an efficient way to update their subscribers on the latest news and articles but also create loyalty and enhance reader engagement. A 3rd party newsletter service integration allowed Synergylaw to meet these needs. This service also included E-mail tracking and statistics, which allowed them to begin testing for campaign effectiveness. This tool was also customized to include attaching of old articles for supplimentary content and responsive design.
Launching Synergylaw’s new website yielded very positive responses. User feedback suggested that it looked far more professional than it’s predecessor. They reported positively on the navigation and profile ease-of-use. Synergylaw was also able to ramp up their marketing efforts due to the newly available functionality and tools.