We get asked all the time about what is a fair price for a law firm website. This is really the wrong question. The truth is, a quality law firm website can range from free to tens of thousands of dollars.
A better question, "What are your goals for your law firm website?"
This question is much better for identifying how much you should spend on your website, and law firm web marketing in general.
The Online Business Card
Some law firms just want what I describe as "an online business card". Their website goal is to have something to show people who ask them about their website. They don't care whether or not their site will get visitors, leads, or generate new clients. They just want see their law firm's name in lights.
If this is your goal, I wouldn't recommend a large investment. In fact, I recommend you spend about what you spend on your business cards. Since the only people that will see your site are those that you actually show (or to whom you give the exact address), you want it to be professional, but you really shouldn't make a large investment. The majority of your investment should be on design elements (i.e. color scheme, fonts, images, and theme). In other words, the look and feel of your site.
The Basic Blog
Some lawyers recognize that merely having an online business card isn't enough. They want to be able to discuss important news, add relevant information about their practice, and position themselves as experts in their particular field. They understand some basics about law firm internet marketing, but aren't really ready to completely commit to a full-scale online marketing campaign.
If this is your goal, you're in luck. You can implement a very professional website/blog solution for around $15 / month. Your monetary costs will primarily be for domain registration and hosting. If you want professional designs, installation, and some basic support, you could spend an additional fifty to a couple thousand dollars. Since you will be the one adding new content to the site, your focus should be on the ease of use of the content management system. If you hire someone for basic installation and design, you should make sure that you can keep the site and its content if you decide to change support companies.
The Practice Growth Machine
Many law firms are learning that the internet can be an excellent source of new clients and new sources of referrals. They need comprehensive web marketing services. These typically include a website and blog, contact form integration, link building, and other features designed not only to help the website get found online, but to turn more traffic into leads and clients.
If this is your goal, the bulk of your investment should be on the methods being employed to get your website exposed to more targeted traffic and turning that traffic into potential client leads.
These services can range from a couple hundred dollars per month to several thousand. When you are considering hiring a law firm web marketing consultant, there are many important questions to ask. In the end, I believe the single most important characteristics to look for in a web marketer is transparency.