In this article, we are sharing a case study about a divorce website that earns over $20 000 per month by offering a self-help tool that couples can use to fill out divorce paperwork. The OnlineDivorcer.com website offers the forms required in every US state to file for divorce.
The site charges a fixed fee for the package of documents and unlimited support and it has the capability to serve more than 1 000 clients a day.
So far, Online Divorcer has reached 17 000 unique visitors per month, with about 40% of the total traffic generated by blog articles.
How the Idea Came
For many members of the OnlineDivorce.com team, divorce was a personal matter. At one of the meetings, at a barbecue party, the guys started talking and started discussing family issues - it turned out that the parents of some of them went through a divorce.
Obviously, everyone's experience was different. What everyone had in common was experienced emotions and money.
The question of money arose not only because of the property dispute — parents had to spend thousands of dollars on lawyers. Some ended up losing their savings. There were even those who refused a divorce because they could not afford it.
The team spent the night exploring alternatives to the usual divorce process—lawyers might not be the only option.
It turned out that in court you can represent yourself. After some additional research, they found that if they found the right paperwork and presented their case well enough, they could significantly cut divorce costs.
After months of research, the team helped a mutual friend get a divorce for nothing but the court fee. Then it became clear that in the same way, it is possible to help thousands of families save money on lawyers.
What Were the Difficulties?
When the project started 12 years ago (under a different name), there was no competition. Initially, it was understood that it would be difficult for people to trust the online service in such serious cases as divorce. Therefore, it was necessary to make sure that the results speak for themselves.
The team started in California, her home state. A familiar lawyer was involved in the project for consultations. As soon as the divorce process in California was mastered, it was the turn of other states — the number of sites increased. By this time, it became clear that:
Based on this, the team created a simplified questionnaire with detailed prompts and a clear automatic system that:
Of course, not everything happens completely automatically. The site has a team of specialists that checks for changes in legislation and monitors the relevance of documents. In addition, there is a 24-hour customer support service, so anyone who has questions about the services of the site can call the number indicated, if necessary, even at night.
While the site does not provide any legal advice, it does minimize the effort and money its clients spend on divorce. They, in turn, share their experience with friends, colleagues, and family, which helps build trust in the resource.
People are more likely to trust a service if someone they know recommends it. After the first successful divorce proceedings, people began to come to the site through referral links.
What Influenced the Site's Success?
In addition to a lot of research, a good SEO strategy has influenced the success of the site. All content on the site is built around YMYL. Everything on the site, from the blog to the main pages, can have a significant impact on the health, happiness, and finances of readers.
Google requires that such sites contain content written by experts, which is what the creators of Online Divorcer emphasized. The team includes attorneys and lawyers with sufficient experience to write on divorce-related topics and provide useful advice to readers. The site contains the data of real experts, including the biographies of the authors.
It's not just about Google's requirements — the website's owners say they sleep well, knowing that the site's information will not harm users and they get what they came for. Another benefit of expert content is that it tends to be shared. In this way, the link mass grows organically, which leads to an increase in traffic.
Google Analytics shows how well certain content writing strategies work in terms of driving traffic and building links. A more detailed picture of user behavior is helped by understanding heat maps of clicks (Hotjar was used).
Thanks to heat maps, the following was revealed:
Here's what the map looked like on the initial homepage:
The case of heatmaps has shown that sometimes small changes can have a big effect.
The Biggest Mistake They Made During Their Journey
At the start of the project, social networks were not used very actively, since the key demographic group 7-8 years ago was not involved in it as much as it is now. In addition, the target audience also began to get younger.
Now they have had to catch up and strengthen the work with social networks - Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and even Pinterest. Such a move helped attract a relatively younger audience than the one that was previously bet on.
Website Development Strategy
The strategy of the Online Divorcer team is based on simple principles:
These decisions helped the team survive many updates to Google's core algorithm without a significant drop in traffic.
The website’s Income
Although the site owners don't talk about the site's income, it's clear that it takes a lot of revenue to maintain a staff of 15-20 people. The site has a high check — $139 for a complete package of documents. Based on realistic conversion rate calculations (1%), it can be assumed that the site gets at least 170 customers per month on average. Multiplying this figure by the cost of the service, we get more than $23 000 per month.
The success of the Online Divorcer site is no accident. Behind the delicious numbers lie years of working with experts, collecting specific information, audience needs, and promotion. As a result, a generally simple principle emerges — in order to earn a lot, you need to solve the pressing problems of people with the help of recognized professionals. At the same time, the chances of success increase many times if the customers of the service save their money and time.