Over the years I’ve heard lots of lawyers complain about bad experiences with Findlaw.
So if you’re having a bad experience with them, please realize that you’re not alone.
Here are some web articles I’ve collected on Findlaw over the years.
- FindLaw gaming Google, and possibly scamming lawyer customers?
- Dow Jones reporting FindLaw misconduct and lawyers questioning what FindLaw sold them
- Former FindLaw sales rep blows whistle
- FindLaw selling links story is spreading like wildfire
- FindLaw blogs an embarrassment to the legal profession
- FindLaw scores low on the ‘Truth-O-Meter’
- Findlaw selling ghost written blogs : Law firms foolishly buy in
- What Prospective Clients Need to Know About Hiring FindLaw for Website Design, SEO, and Digital Marketing
- Why your Findlaw website is tanking and what to do about it
- The FindLaw Jailbreak Guide
Here are key excerpts from some of these articles to give you a sense of the kinds of problems lawyers encounter…
“If your Findlaw site has seen a drop in performance…The odds are high that they built spam links to your website that Google has detected, and punished, in one way or another. “ —Article link
“Should you try to move your Findlaw site to the new domain? Probably not. Findlaw ropes all their customers into lopsided contracts that make it hard to leave with your website. “ —Article link
“Considering escaping FindLaw for an effective SEO provider? First, check the fine print to see just how difficult they’ve made it for your to get out of your FindLaw contract.” —Article link
“Time and again, we’ve heard from clients who are unhappy with FindLaw’s services and want a new agency but are only a year or 18 months through their contract with FindLaw…
Here’s the critical thing to understand about FindLaw’s service agreement: FindLaw will enforce the agreement and they will not hesitate to litigate if you try to leave early.” —Article link
And here’s an email I got after I posted this article…
“When I first opened my own practice in 2006, a FindLaw rep contacted me and set up an appointment. She tried to sell me on the SEO, as I recall, but what really stood out for me was that, in responding to my question, she said that if a lawyer ever decides to leave FindLaw, he/she can take the site and leave. In other words, the lawyer owned the site. When she presented me with a contract, however, it clearly stated that if a lawyer wanted to leave FindLaw, he/she needed to “buy back” the site from FindLaw. When I asked the rep about this, she said it was a mistake. I asked if FindLaw could take it out of the contract and she said no.
One day when I was not in the office, the FindLaw rep showed up at my home. The house was under construction so the doors were open and workers were walking in and out of the house. The FindLaw rep walked into my house, without knocking or ringing the bell, and went looking for me throughout the house. I’m not kidding.
When she finally realized I was not signing up with FindLaw, she told me that she knew someday I would be hunting her down so I could sign up. Needless to say, that never happened.
The final thing that I realized about FindLaw was that, on every FindLaw website, FindLaw puts a page called “Resources” The Resources page includes a link back to the FindLaw site. The FindLaw site, as you know, includes contact information and advertising for other lawyers. So, essentially, if someone comes to your website looking for a lawyer, they find a link which will take them to a site where they can look for a different lawyer! Just what every lawyer wants on his/her website!
Oh, and here’s another email I got…
“Just wanted to add my “woes” to your long list. I knew from the start that I was being taken for a ride and that Findlaw did not have my best interests at heart, only their interest in locking the atty into paying a burdensome amount of money.
Initially, Findlaw was not willing to build my site on WordPress but eventually agreed, but would not allow it to be hosted on my domain host, Network Solutions. This way they could fail to preform and when the client realized this lack of performance it was hard to take your website back under your exclusive control.
I am still fighting over the “buyout” provisions of the contract. Even though I paid the $15,000 to buy out the $36k contract, they continue to bill me as if nothing ever happened.
I am grateful that a colleague sent me your email. Thank you.
If you’re thinking of using Findlaw for your law firm website, you might want to do some serious due diligence (i.e. ask a bunch of fellow lawyers who’ve used them what their experiences have been).
Bottom line: the more you understand about how to properly market your practice (including whom you can truly trust to help you) the better off you’ll be.
If you’re interested moving beyond the realm of “blind faith marketing” then you might be interested in this program.