Lawyers are a crafty bunch. They can make clever arguments and most are competent to speak in public. It does take quite a bit of education to become a lawyer and with that some level of intelligence.

Yet, many lawyers are not comfortable with technology. This is especially true when lawyers want to create a website for their own law practice. Most lawyers would rather outsource the project. They see it as a simple business expense. After all, a basic bare-bones website will cost very little.

Outsourcing a website project may seem to be an easy solution, but these days there are plenty of options for a newbie or low budget law website projects. Also, a lost cost designed website will generally use a template leaving you with a website that is not very unique. It can be slow and at times, stop working all together.

Unless you are willing to shell out a few thousand dollars (yes, thousands) for a good website developer, you are better off doing the project yourself. It can cost more in terms of time and possibly brand you as “semi-professional.” People do judge a law firm based on their website. With the amount of time that it can take you to find a website developer that you feel comfortable with, checking their work, getting corrections made, and creating content (which you will need to do regardless of who creates your website), you can create your own custom website.

We now live in a drop and drag world. There a many good easy to use tools to help you build your website. Some of these tools are very basic and can be done by most lawyers just looking to get something up and running.

For lawyers looking to create a website that does not sell anything i.e., a website that is not an e-commerce site, we highly recommend WordPress. There are a number of reasons why WordPress is likely a good fit for your project. At the top of that list of reasons is the user interface of the drag and drop is highly intuitive. Most of the functionality is also understandable and can be easily added with as little as clicking a check box or making a selection from a drop down menu. And there are lots of designs that are built in and can be customized pretty quickly.

Another great benefit of WordPress is the large community. With the large community you get a lot of free information and plugins. If you want to add a payment function on your website, you can add a plugin for that as well (Paypal has one you can add for free and they take a low percentage of any transaction - and zero if you don’t have any transactions).

In order to create your own website with your own law firm’s name you will need to register with a domain name company and get a service to host your website. Both of these are really inexpensive. Once you have these two, you can load WordPress.

At Peerless Legal we use GoDaddy to register the name and InmotionHosting as the hosting provider. (we are not paid to say this - although we would like to be!! Hint! Hint!) There are a number of other services out there, and, in fact, both GoDaddy and InmotionHosting can provide both services so you do not have to go anywhere else. (The real reason why we split the two is because each had unbelievable low prices for what they were offering so we just split it up.)

Also we at Peerless Legal are not using WordPress. As an e-commerce website, we need more functionality than a basic website would need, such as a login, checkout, and shopping cart.

Personally, I have used WordPress in the past and thought it was an excellent tool. If the e-commerce capabilities were as advanced as the Megento platform that is currently being used for this website, we certainly would be using WordPress instead of Magento.

(If you are looking for an e-commerce platform, Magneto is highly recommended (even over WordPress), but it does require programming and at times can be time consuming to get right.)

If you want to try out WordPress before you dive into it, you can go to and create a WordPress blog. This won’t be your “own” website because it will have the WordPress tags on the address, but the blog will help you to see if you can use the functionality to create your website. There is not a huge difference between the functionality you have with the free blog and the one you can install on your own website. If you do decide to go with WordPress, you can import your information you created on your blog.

If you find after using WordPress for some time that it is not what you wanted, you can always switch to something else. It does take some effort, but if you decide early on that you don’t like WordPress you can simply load another program with your host provider.

The functionality that most law practices need is a contact page, some information on the area of practices, and a blog (although a blog is not mandatory, we would highly recommend one). WordPress can do all of these things for you, and you can try it, before you get too deep into it.



This blog entry was written by Sanket Mistry.

Sanket Mistry, J.D., M.I.A.      Sanket Mistry is the founder and CEO of Peerless Legal and blogs regularly. He has written numerous books including, "25 Estate Planning Forms," "8 Living Trust Forms," "Simple Will Creator," "Give Through a Will & Living Trust," and "Guidance On Creating Your Own Will & Power of Attorney," and the bestselling books in the Legal Self-Help Guide series, "Will, Trust, & Power of Attorney Creator and Estate Records Organizer" and "Estate Planning in Plain-English." He earned his JD from the Walter F. George School of Law at Mercer University and is a member of the New York State Bar. He has worked, and volunteered, at a number of nonprofits, government agencies, and for-profit corporations. He also holds a BA in philosophy from Emory University and a MIA from Columbia University. He is an avid traveler and tennis player.