Why Marketing ROI for Lawyers Is Important

While many lawyers may be hesitant about online marketing due to a saturated market of over-promises, when executed effectively, it can yield great results. However, it’s crucial to be aware of ineffective strategies. To measure the success of your law firm’s marketing efforts, you need to calculate the return on investment (ROI). This metric not only quantifies the outcomes of each campaign but also promotes accountability and growth. By tracking your marketing ROI, you can discern which tactics are most profitable, allowing you to optimize your budget allocation accordingly.

How To Calculate Law Firm Marketing ROI

Calculating law firm marketing ROI typically involves subtracting the costs incurred from the outcomes generated as a result.

The standard equation is:

(Attributed Sales Growth – Marketing Cost) / Marketing Cost = ROI

However, this formula assumes that all sales growth is directly linked to digital marketing efforts.

To incorporate organic sales, you might utilize this formula:

(Sales Growth – Organic Sales Growth – Marketing Cost) / Marketing Cost = ROI


Alternatively, you might opt for calculating ROI based on customer lifetime value (CLV), which provides insight into the value of each client’s relationship with your law firm over time. This approach assesses long-term ROI throughout the client lifecycle, as shown in this formula:

Customer Lifetime Value = (Retention Rate) / (1 + Discount Rate / Retention Rate)

Given the unique nature of every law firm, it’s essential to factor in individual overhead costs, profit margins, and industry-specific variables related to your practice areas.

Keep in mind, ROI encompasses more than just acquiring new clients. It also encompasses intangible benefits such as enhancements to online brand awareness and reputation.

What Is a Good ROI for Law Firms

Digital marketing experts often adhere to the rule of thumb that a good ROI should ideally be at a 5:1 ratio, meaning earning $5 for every $1 spent. Exceptional and rare ROI falls around a 10:1 ratio, while anything below a 2:1 ratio is generally considered unprofitable.

Occasionally, businesses with costs and overheads below 50 percent of the sales prices may still see profits at lower ratios, though this occurrence is relatively infrequent.

How to Improve Law Firm Marketing ROI

Fortunately, if your ROI doesn’t meet the recommended ratio, there’s room for improvement. The more precise your goals and objectives are for your law firm’s marketing efforts, coupled with diligent tracking, the more accurate your data will be, leading to a more effective digital marketing strategy.

To start, steer clear of these typical marketing errors:

Use Your Law Firm Social Media Effectively

While social media can enhance your law firm’s online visibility, it’s not advisable to allocate all your marketing funds to it right away. Instead, view it as a complementary marketing tool.

Why? Because prospective clients typically don’t turn to platforms like Facebook or Twitter when searching for lawyers; their initial instinct is to use Google search. Therefore, it’s crucial to prioritize your SEO strategy to enhance your search engine rankings.

If you’ve already listed your law firm on lawyer directories, you can utilize social media as a platform for content distribution and encourage clients to leave reviews on various social platforms.

Explore how social media marketing can amplify your law firm’s visibility and broaden its reach.

Create an Outstanding Law Firm Website

If your website merely serves as an online brochure with limited engagement, it will attract minimal prospects and yield poor results, typically with a conversion rate of no more than 1%, if not lower.

In practical terms, this means that out of every 100 visitors to your website, only one is likely to contact your office or fill out the Contact Us form.

Such dismal performance is unacceptable. High-performing websites in the legal sector, such as those we’ve designed for lawyers, achieve conversion rates at or above 4%. This translates to four or more out of every 100 visitors contacting the office or submitting a contact form.

Having a website that effectively converts visitors into clients is especially crucial when investing in driving traffic to your site. If your law firm website falls short in performance, potential clients may visit but not find what they expect, leading them to leave, essentially wasting your marketing budget.

This explains why many lawyers conclude that “digital marketing doesn’t work.”

Let’s explore the essential elements of a successful law firm website.

Invest in Better Advertising

When investing in traffic generation, it’s imperative to enlist the expertise of a law firm marketing professional. Opting for an amateur or a budget marketing company often results in significant money wastage. Why? Because in the fiercely competitive realm of law firm marketing, effective advertising is a precise science, not child’s play.

If your ads fail to align with users’ search queries, they won’t garner as many clicks as your competitors’, and Google will charge you more per click.

Moreover, if your ads direct users to landing pages with content that doesn’t match their search intent, they’ll swiftly exit the page, leading to wasted expenditure.

Furthermore, Google Ads settings are relatively intricate. Attempting a do-it-yourself approach or working with a low-cost agency can lead to a squandered marketing budget.

Achieve targeted traffic and lead generation through strategic advertising tailored for law firms.

Use Google Analytics to Its Fullest

In today’s digital landscape, tools like Google Analytics and other marketing technology offer invaluable insights into client behavior and campaign performance. Neglecting these tools is akin to gambling on your law firm’s marketing endeavors and hoping for favorable outcomes.

Prior to launching any legal marketing campaign, it’s essential to establish clearly defined Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to guide your tracking efforts. Many law firms fall into the trap of investing in sophisticated technology but fail to track the right metrics, which ultimately undermines their efforts.

A robust legal marketing strategy comprises overarching KPIs, achieved through a series of smaller campaigns, each with its own set of KPIs. This simple example underscores the significance of measuring your marketing strategy’s effectiveness.

Discover how lawyer analytics can empower law firms to craft and execute effective marketing strategies.

Results From ROI-Focused Marketing for Lawyers

Once you’ve ceased squandering time and resources on ineffective marketing, commenced tracking your return on investment, or perhaps engaged with a marketing firm specializing in your industry, what outcomes can you anticipate?

Website that Generates Leads

As previously mentioned, an effective attorney website boasts a conversion rate of 4% or higher. With this rate, where every fourth prospect becomes a paying client, you can anticipate acquiring approximately one paying client for every 100 website visitors.

Understanding your average revenue per client and the cost of attracting 100 visitors to your website enables straightforward estimation of your law firm’s marketing budget and expected ROI.

A mobile-friendly, optimized website with rapid loading times and clear calls to action is pivotal for converting prospects into clients.

Your law firm’s website serves as its digital storefront, communicating its values, achievements, and persuading potential clients that yours is the only firm worth considering.

Elevate user experience and drive conversions with a visually appealing and user-friendly law firm website.

Marketing That Brings In New Clients and Grows Practice

Your marketing mix encompasses a range of tools employed by expert marketing agencies to help achieve your objectives and connect with your target audience.

For law firms, these tools include SEO (search engine optimization), PPC (pay-per-click advertising), listings on relevant online directories, and more.

However, success hinges on selecting the appropriate marketing channels. For lawyers specializing in personal injury, criminal defense, family, bankruptcy, elder law, trust litigation, and other consumer-focused areas, Google and, to a lesser extent, YouTube are optimal platforms for attracting prospective clients.

One of the critical inquiries to pose to law firms is regarding the results you can anticipate from their services and their strategy for achieving those outcomes. Additionally, they should be capable of presenting case studies—maintaining client confidentiality—demonstrating their approach and its effectiveness.

As Ray Dalio, manager of the largest hedge fund in history, advises, it’s crucial to “trust in believable people”—those who can substantiate their capabilities. By adhering to this principle, you can foster high expectations for your digital marketing efforts, ensuring they not only meet but exceed your anticipations.

Stay ahead of the competition by implementing actionable marketing strategies tailored for lawyers.

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