Visit any law firm’s website these days, and you’re likely met with pop-ups and lead magnets galore! But often, the most important pop-up is a little window asking if you need assistance or more information about your interests in your legal case. Welcome to the world of legal chatbots.
What are chatbots?
“Welcome! Thank you for visiting us. How can we help with your legal question?”
A friendly message from a bot as you check out a site. The box that pops up inquiring about your intentions as you visit the webpage. The chatbox that directs you to the blog article or FAQ page with your question already answered.
You’re likely already familiar with this welcoming piece of technology: a chatbot.
A bot is a piece of automated software that is programmed to perform certain tasks without the direction of a human operator.
A chatbox is programmed to welcome a visitor to the site (much like a receptionist would in a physical office setting) and help them find the information they need. But chatbots can do much more than this—they also perform automated tasks to help clients serve themselves online and help lawyers increase their efficiency.
The usages of chatbots on law firm websites are robust and flexible—and growing! Utilizing them in your firm can significantly improve your lead conversion rate. After all, once you go through the hard work of getting someone to your site you want to do everything you can to get them to reach out to your firm.
How do chatbots benefit law firms?
Reduced time spent on administrative tasks
Did you know that lawyers spend only 28% of their time on billable work? The rest of their time is spent on practice management, administrative tasks, and marketing for the firm. In order to increase efficiency and revenue, and therefore, profitability, lawyers need to spend more time on their billable client work.
Enter: the chatbot.
With chatbots, lawyers can defer these administrative tasks to automation. Firms can utilize chatbots to take the burden of the administrative work away from lawyers to free up their time, while the chatbot works to answer the questions of any potential clients that could be a fit for your firm’s legal services.
Increase firm profitability
Firms can utilize bots to increase their time available for billable work while bumping up revenue thanks to increased conversions. Think of the chatbot as a helper—one that doesn’t make administrative mistakes (which cost time and money to fix) and one that frees up your schedule to focus on high-level work.
Increase satisfaction with prompt answers
Chatbots are available 24/7. They don’t need vacation time or take time off, and they can handle more than one case at a time. The availability and accessibility that a chatbot provides greatly impacts a firm’s success. After all, 67% of people will choose a law firm based on how promptly they respond to their first call or email.
Bots can be programmed to provide potential clients with in-depth and prompt information on their case types on-demand, make booking appointments easy, and can retain information of clients for recurring visitors. Chatbots reduce potential client wait time, resolve support cases, instantly welcome clients, and efficiently directs them to the resources they seek.
Chatbots can be the first step in an amazing client experience for your firm.
Automate your intake processes
Client intake and consultation bookings can be completed by chatbots. Once a user visits the site and enters their information, the bot can record and store their information, book their consultation, and send automated confirmation and reminder messages.
This leads to faster intake, more efficient communication, and hassle-free scheduling and follow-up. A law firm chatbot can automate the initial intake process, making it more efficient and, as a result, more profitable.
Boost lead generation
Your website is one of the most effective lead generation tools for your site and one of your strongest conversion tools. Legal chatbots can qualify a potential client and schedule legal consultations anytime someone fresh comes in, offering law companies the ability to generate leads 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Choosing a chatbot
There’s a wide variety of chatbots out there to choose from, but selecting the right one for your law firm is important. Consider the following as you make your choice:
What price point do you feel comfortable with?
Do you want the experience to be completely automated by a bot or would you prefer a person to be answering questions coming through the chat feature?
How many leads do you expect a month?
Using a chatbot that has experience with the legal industry, like Apex Chat or Ngage, can help to make sure the responses individuals get are in line with the correct ethical considerations regarding advertising and establishing a client relationship.
Compliance and ethical considerations
As with any technology that collects sensitive information, you must understand the ethics of using chatbots for your company.
Clients need to know that the information they provide your firm with will be kept confidential, and their privacy is upheld. Firms must provide visitors with information about how their data will be used and ensure to the users that the data will remain private and secure.
Additionally, it’s crucial to follow local and state regulations regarding data privacy. For example, some states require disclosing that the interaction is with a software program and that they’re not communicating with an actual person.
Making chatbots work for your firm
Legal chatbots have powerful capabilities for increasing your firm’s efficiency, profitability, and user experience. They can be completely customizable and offer a personalized experience for your new leads and clients, as well as for your firm’s attorneys.
Ultimately, legal tech is designed specifically to help lawyers stay focused on the work that matters most while staying compliant to run their law offices with a little more peace of mind—and a legal chatbot can be an excellent tool in achieving this.