Vladimir Grevtsov’s Legal Knowledge Agency’s is a large business media company that delivers legal knowledge to law professionals from various firms, including corporate lawyers. The agency also publishes a printed magazine, organizes educational events, including some of the largest in the county, and holds regular expert discussions of country’s statutory act drafts.
What We Started With
The main issue was that the printed version of the magazine no longer attracted regular readers. The client had an online presence, but the website was obsolete, with outdated UI/UX. It simply listed PDF files of the magazine’s printed editions. It was basically an information product with no means to promote and share the content online. Users did not have proper options to search for relevant laws and legal documents. No search engine or links to legal acts were provided. Website users were seeking other, more modern ways of searching, reading and receiving legal information services online via their desktop and mobile devices.
Main Goals And Objectives
Our goal was to develop a whole new set of functionality to turn the project into a universal omnichannel solution and a one-stop legal knowledge portal to accommodate all use cases. For that we had to utilize our full set of expertise in web portal development and law firm web design.
The objectives were to complete the following:
- Provide access to an external portal of legal knowledge through paid subscription;
- Online representation of the printed magazine in a more structured and approachable format;
- Expand the portal’s sharing and distribution channels on the web (Add functionality for sharing news, SEO optimization, etc.);
- Counterparty/contractor background-check service, which includes manual and automated monitoring mechanisms;
- Design a modern UI and UX with smooth interactions and data flow for the website to provide users with new, convenient, modern ways of consuming legal information and news.
Results and Achievements
We have reached our goals and objectives and provided the client with a powerful, full-fledged legal knowledge web solution. It did not take long for the client to get the first results. The project’s revenue started rising at an increasing rate right after project launch. The client witnessed numbers that were 4 times higher compared to the same period of the prior year.
Project’s Scale and Interesting Facts
50 Unique layouts
30 000 Testing checkpoints
Unique functionality and features
A complex counterparty background-check service was developed. It includes:
- Expansive database of counterparties accumulating information from 15 various governmental knowledge bases and presenting it in a comprehensive, yet concise format that is convenient for the user;
- Manual and automated counterparty monitoring mechanisms, with options to monitor the current state (operational, under trial, pending liquidation, bankruptcy, etc.).
Another feature that makes the service stand out among competition is the ability to give advice to lawyers on problematic issues. Additionally to providing recommendations with sound legal advice on individual issues, there is a possibility to download legal documents for specific cases.
We also integrated the powerful Sphinx search engine into the solution. This feature provides the solution with great search capabilities that allowed to find relevant content based on the weight of such parameters as appearance of the term in the:
- article title;
- contents of the article;
- author’s name;
- article’s preview text.
Our search mechanism allows users to look for companies by typing in their tax ID and various versions of the name, including name synonyms. If the system does not find a certain company in its database, it redirects the search request to an external source and uses that information to provide the user with relevant results.
The Development Process
What we offered to the client was custom web portal development services and started working hand-in-hand with them to deliver the envisioned solution.
The client originally had detailed prototypes, but they turned out to have little influence on the final look and feel of the product.
There were two teams, one from each side: LOVATA's team and client’s representatives.
- Project manager;
- Business analyst;
- UI/UX expert;
- 3 front-end specialists;
- 2 back-end developers;
- 2 QA engineers.
- Product Owner;
- Editor in Chief;
- Business Analyst;
- Content Manager;
- Marketing Specialist;
- System Administrator.
The teams had bi-weekly meetings, where the work completed during the sprint was presented. Since the project was quite complex, the tasks were prioritized accordingly. The deliveries happened once a month, with an MVP provided two months after the project’s launch. Project management was entirely on LOVATA’s side.
The solution is not just another knowledge base portal. One of the main challenges we had to face was to create a User Experience that would help users to easily obtain the information they needed, whether it’s news, background checks, subscriptions: we had to make it all intuitive and fluid.
Our design comprised of over 50 unique layouts for various parts of the system. Each and every one of these layouts had to be discussed and approved by the client after our designer had created his concept and vision of the user story.
А full-fledged legal website design was implemented. The company’s website now includes a large knowledge-base of law-related and legal content, with the option of paid subscription that provides access to a set of products, including:
- Latest legislation news;
- Online version of the printed magazine;
- Counterparty background-check service (manual checking, as well as automatic monitoring);
- Access to an independent knowledge base of national laws and regulations;
- User’s profile that allows accumulating information, which can later be used for marketing purposes by the client’s team.
The solution has two separate versions implemented: for desktop and mobile devices. The type of mobile device is determined on the client side and sent to the server to receive an appropriate layout for each specific device type.
Our solution brought many advantages for end-users, increased the service’s client base and overall online presence. It also introduced rich back-end features for the portal’s admins to manage their new website and provide fresh and relevant content.
The new back-end features of the website include the following functionality for admins:
- Flexible subscription system provides options for users (using promo-codes) to gain access to different product bundles, including trial sets. This, combined with the custom banner placement mechanism, is a powerful tool in the hands of marketing managers;
- Flexible news placement allows to add news releases and updates, advertisements and announcements;
- A powerful custom SEO plugin with rich functionality, which was implemented by LOVATA’s development team.
Diligent Testing & Browser Support
Testing turned out to be quite complex as well. There were over 30 000 testing checkpoints that embodied the whole system. Various features were covered by unit testing and automated testing.
We tested the solution across 5 desktop and 2 mobile browsers. The end solution had full support for the following browsers:
- Desktop: Google Chrome 57+; Mozilla Firefox 52+; Opera Browser 44+; Microsoft Edge 14+, Safari 10.1+.
- Mobile: Google Chrome 57+; Safari 10.1+.
As a result, LOVATA has delivered a robust, reliable and stable solution.
Plans for the Future
The work on the project is ongoing and additional functionality is being developed as we speak. One of the upcoming features will be developed by using Artificial Intelligence: special machine learning algorithms will soon be introduced. This will provide an ability to track the history of counterparties and receive high-probability predictions on their future activity.
Тhe service will be capable of determining whether counterparties are likely to follow the same issues with transition, liquidation, bankruptcy, fraudulent activity etc. based on the history of their predecessors and a large set of data gathered from various sources.