Something Old, Something New

You might think that Harvey & Battey, P.A., is the kind of law firm that doesn’t need an Internet presence. Founded in 1922, it is the oldest firm in the city and county of Beaufort, South Carolina. The senior partner, W. Brantley Harvey, Jr., served as a state legislator for 16 years, and after that, as lieutenant governor. His son, William B. Harvey III, is the Beaufort city attorney and carries the legal tradition to the third generation.
Given this legacy, does Harvey & Battey really need a Web site?

When asked this question, Lee Perry laughed. “Do you think we wouldn’t need any advertising?”

Perry, who serves as assistant to William Harvey, notes that “even a well-known, well-established firm needs to keep its name out there.” This is especially true given the influx of military personnel, retirees, and others who make the Hilton Head area the fastest-growing region in the state. “We’ve decided to establish a site to keep pace with the growing community,” she says.

The FirmSite has been a useful tool for staff and the public alike. “You don’t have to go into huge detail about who we are and what we are about when you talk to someone. We can say ‘You can go to our Web site,’ and people are happy to have that resource. It’s an additional avenue of acquainting people with the firm.”

It was important, Perry says, for the tone of the firm and of the region to be reflected in the site. “We’re an old southern, water community; there’s a heritage of gracious southern living here. We wanted that to come through on the site. We’ve tried to bring that out on the home page, and with the water photos on all the pages. We tried to make it a little more narrative, and not hard edge. I think it’s appreciated here.”

The legacy of southern hospitality is evident throughout the site. Visitors have no difficulty finding a way to contact the firm; its address, phone number, and email address are placed at the bottom of every page. The section offering external links is unusually comprehensive in its inclusion of local tourist, residential, and news sources. The real estate practice area has a wealth of helpful information, as does the estate and probate practice.

In addition to placing the site’s address on letterhead and business cards, the firm asked West to optimize its positioning with search engines. As a result, “there was a huge difference in traffic over time,” Perry says. “At first, I couldn’t find us. But now, you do a search, and we’re right there. I’m quite satisfied.”

Traffic to the site has been steadily increasing; within the most recent six month period, for example, traffic has risen by over two and one-half times.

Even the most prominent of firms rely on a FirmSite by West to stay in the public eye.

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