Thursday, July 12, 2012
Keep Email Addresses Off of Your Legal Website
During the site development phase, attorneys often ask us whether or not they should include their email addresses on their websites. Our answer is always resounding no! If you are considering adding an email address to your site (or already have one up there), we recommend that you reconsider.
Here are a few reasons of the many reasons why we strongly advise against the inclusion of email addresses on an attorney’s website:
- “Bots” which search engines send out to review your site pick-up these email addresses and you will likely receive a ton of spam mail within months.
- Most website platforms offer basic contact forms through which visitors can send contact inquiries. These forms then send out the notices to the designated person(s) at the firm using an authenticated account, reducing the chance that it gets marked as Spam by mail servers or mail clients. The Zola Creative platform even maintains a log of all of these contact inquiries and tracks additional information such as the IP address of the visitor submitting the inquiry.
- You will not necessarily know that the contact was initiated through your website which makes it difficult to effectively gauge your site’s effectiveness and make necessary adjustments for improvement.
Whenever possible, utilize online contact forms to keep your email address out of harm’s way while allowing people to still effectively connect with your firm online. If you are insistent upon an email address on the site, consider placing the email address in a graphic which cannot be detected by bots to save you from spam and potential viruses.