In Matthew Dixon’s, “the Effortless Experience,” 80% of the companies interviewed had subscribed to the notion that when it came to creating an online experience, more was better. The companies surveyed invariably provided a near-endless stream of choices on their website, from web chat, click-to-chat, knowledge bases, step by step guides, online support communities and so on. Their efforts were all based on the erroneous assumption that providing more choice was a good thing.
What resulted from Dixon’s work in assessing the corresponding responses of their focus groups, was a significant degree of paralysis, analysis, or simply a sense of being overwhelmed by choice. The research of course is also supported by the classic study by researchers at Stanford who displayed a myriad of flavours of jam and later observed how people selected from the vast array of choices. In nearly all instances, the greater the variety, the fewer the number of jars sold.
Dixon concludes that more choice leads to a higher decision effort, which more often than not, prompts the person to abort the process. Dixon, later followed up with an additional research project and found that by and large, people will trade off choice readily for a guided experience.
In the context of your law firm marketing efforts, this is not to say that you should become singular-focused and reduce content marketing efforts, but rather, instead of adopting a methodology that is predicated on more is better, perhaps ask, are you creating a better experience for the online user?
In a practical sense, mapping out the client journey in the relevant practice area is a great start and then categorising all your blog content accordingly as well. In other words, for a family law client, map out the steps from separation through property settlement, children’s issues etc and base your client-centric content under each step. Similarly do the same with your blog categories, listing each blog under relevant areas.
We call this content architecture, and in my podcast with perhaps the World’s most renowned content strategist, Kristina Halvorson, Kristina discusses the importance of it.
Notwithstanding this, in working with a commercial law firm in Sydney, Australia recently, at the end of each web page or blog post, we recommended to the reader where they should go next. It works a treat and harnesses Dixon’s resolution that a guided tour can be incredibly powerful and effective.