Influence of Attorney Ratings and Client Reviews on Consumers
Our series of blog posts this month have illustrated a variety of online resources that are being increasingly used by consumers when they have a legal need. We've seen that consumers rely on search engines, social media sites and even online legal advice forums at different stages throughout their research.
According to the Attorney Selection Research Study by The Research Intelligence Group (TRiG), consumers are increasingly turning to independent ratings and client reviews of attorneys that are available on the Internet.
The survey found that a clear majority of consumers who searched for an attorney in the past year — 57 percent — used an online resource to check and compare the ratings or reviews of a lawyer during that search process. Moreover, two-thirds of those individuals found this information to be either "extremely" or "moderately" influential in their ultimate decisions about which lawyer to hire.1
This is a significant finding that should cause all attorneys to take stock of which independent ratings of their credentials and client reviews of their services, if any, are available to consumers. It's entirely consistent with recent research from Nielsen, which reported that 70 percent of consumers trusted online consumer reviews.2
Regardless of how a lawyer may feel about participating in these sorts of services, the fact is that consumers are seeking out this type of information and giving it serious consideration in their decision-making process. If you want to keep pace with your prospective clients' expectations, you need to embrace the opportunity to publish independent ratings of your credentials and reviews of your services.
For validating lawyer credentials, LexisNexis® Martindale-Hubbell® has the most attorneys with a trusted peer rating or a client review. For more information or to get started with getting rated, visit martindale.com/ratings or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Next week, we'll continue our series of blog posts regarding the results of the Attorney Selection Research Study by examining the devices that consumers use when doing their online research for an attorney and how this intelligence should impact your marketing plan.
1 Based on a survey of 4,000 adult Internet users conducted by The Research Intelligence Group (TRiG), March 2012.
2 Nielsen Global Trust in Advertising Survey, 2012.
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