Is The 98/2 Rule Costing You Money? (The Ninety Eight Two Rule)

Most solicitors’ websites fail because all of the effort is spent on working out how to get more people to visit their legal website, yet little or no time is then thought about how to get more people to interact with their website once they arrive there. Yet this is a massive mistake. My 98/2 rule explains exactly why this is the case and why failing to take note of it can cost you a substantial sum of money.

Is The 98/2 Rule Costing You Money? (The Ninety Eight Two Rule)

The 98/2 rules is based on the average figures frequently banded about the internet that for every 100 visitors to your legal website (or any website for that matter), ONLY 2 of them will actually take the time or go to the trouble of interacting with you.

This might mean that they fill in a contact form on your website, phone your freephone number (you do have one of those don’t you?), or email you. Now I say this is an average figure but I can tell you from working on hundreds of solicitors websites, that it is, if anything, generous.

Some websites convert at less than 1%, meaning that less than 1 person for every 100 visitors interacts with the website owner, but let’s work on the 2% for the purpose of this article.

So if only 2 people out of every 100 visitors to your website actually get in touch with you, even if you manage to add 1000 new visitors to your website per month, that actually will only amount to 20 new enquiries.

It will not surprise you that, with this 98/2 rule in mind, my strong advice to you is that first you spend time trying to change the 98/2 rule into a 95/5 rule or even better a 90/10 rule.

How to change the 98/2 rule to work in your favour

So how can you do this? Well there are a number of ways, so let’s look at each one in turn.

Tell people what you want them to do

This is the most obvious one, but I assure you, based on my many hours looking at law firm websites, it is a common mistakes that costs solicitors thousands of lost fee income every year.

At the end of every page on your website you must spell out exactly what your visitor should do next.

Do not assume that they will trudge off to find your contact page; they won’t. In addition to the 98/2 rule, you should also know about the 2 page rule and the 90 second rule – that is the average number of pages and the average time that your visitors will be spending on your website.

With that in mind, you really do need to lead your visitor by the hand in terms of telling them how to take the next step. Offer them a free enquiry and a variety of methods of making contact with you, from your telephone number to your email address and your ‘Free Enquiry Form’. If you don’t have a free enquiry form – you should get one. They improve the 98/2 rule – often dramatically.


Ensure that every page answers every question

I mentioned above that your visitors will, on average, only look at two pages on your website. I know this from analysing the data from hundreds of law firm websites. With that in mind, you need to ensure that every page tackles all of the questions running through your prospects minds, which include:

  • Your costs (just mentioning that the first enquiry is free of charge removes this worry)
  • Proof that you are good – reviews
  • External proof of your expertise (press coverage)
  • Volume of people helped to date



Websites are very static things. A visitor arrives, they read content, then they leave. What if something stopped them from leaving just before they left? There are a whole range of tools that do this – I even created my own software solely because the 98/2 rule caused me so much loss of sleep. (Your Website Genie). You should use one – mine or someone else’s – but use one you should. It changes the 98/2 rule – often dramatically.


To find out more about improving your legal website to reduce the 98/2 rule – download my free guide by clicking the button below:

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Now I’ve got eight staff and two offices, and we’ve never been busier.

I’ve been working with Nick for the last six years, and in that time he’s had a significant impact on my business.

We first start working together when I worked at an employment law practice, and when I left there to set up on my own, Nick was one of the first people I called.

I knew that one of the key pieces to get right was the website – in this day and age it’s impossible to run a successful firm without one – and with Nick’s advice, help and guidance, we created our own marketing-focused site that has proven to be the backbone of all the sales and marketing that has followed.

But a good website means nothing unless people see it, and that’s why we turned to Nick to run our Google Adwords, which quickly became a primary source of leads.

In addition to running the traffic, Nick held our hand through every element of the client attraction process, from how to communicate with leads, to how to close sales, and the impact that had on our business cannot be understated.

And that’s why I will always recommend Nick to anyone who needs help with marketing – particularly legal firms: his breadth of knowledge about everything to do with sales and marketing means that he can (and does) help with every part of the picture, resulting in a stronger business than you could have imagined.

Since we’ve been working with Nick, we’ve grown quickly – back in 2013 it was just myself and my wife, and she was part-time.

Now I’ve got eight staff and two offices, and we’ve never been busier.

And if our lead numbers are anything to go by, it’s only going to get better – 2015-2016 saw us get 800 good quality leads in employment law, and that figure more than doubled last year. I can only look forward to more exciting times, working hand-in-hand with Nick to grow my practice and enjoy the fruits that come with that growth.

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