We don’t think you should include links to your web designer / marketing vendor in your footer.
Many web designers / developers / marketing vendors require their clients to include “credits” in their site footers.
There are a variety of reasons that they do this. They might just want to showcase their work. They also might want to “rank” their websites for search queries like, “web design,” etc. But some of them actually have a more nefarious reason:
They want to work with your competitors.
Here’s what happens in the context of online legal marketing.
Web marketing vendor builds a website for law firm. They add a link back to their website in the law firm’s footer.
A competitor of the firm performs searches to see which law firm websites rank in Google. They visit a few of the sites that “rank best.” They scroll to the bottom to see the footer link to the firm’s web vendor. They figure that if the vendor helped their competition rank, they can probably help them too.
So, the firm who hired the website design company now just assisted their competition. Many web marketing vendors are happy to oblige.
See the problem?
There is so much wrong with this process for all parties (except maybe the web marketing vendor).
It might not strike you that using the same marketing company as your competition is that big of a deal. If that’s the case, I can’t help you.
But if you see the problem here, I encourage you to call up your designer / developer and demand they remove the footer links. You should also ask them to tell you whether they’re working with your competition. If they’re reluctant, contact us, we’ll tell you.
If you’re searching for a web marketing vendor, don’t make your choice through competitor footer links.
Ask friends, who aren’t your competitors.