The end of 2015 also marks the end of an era that has lasted eight years: the Legal Beagles site we all knew is dead, you know, the one that was there just to help people without financial gain. VIP memberships have been around for a while but we all know they only produce enough revenue to cover the running costs of the site such as servers and hosting. Unlike its biggest (and much bigger) rivals, Legal Beagles doesn’t have adverts, referrals or skimlinks, well, until now. OK, so there have been some rather discreet ads on the right sidebar, ironically one of them is for the owners of one of what could be considered a rival site.
Next year things are set to change. A new Legal Services Comparison site is due to be launched on the first day of the year. Although users don’t pay to use comparison sites, they generate revenue through pay-per-click (PPC) advertising where the advertiser in question pays for each click-through they receive. The site can also get commission paid through cost per acquisition, sponsored links and banner adverts if used. Since a strong user base is key to the success of such a site, Legal Beagles are on to a winner here.
Whether the site users will also win remains to be seen. The impartiality of the advice could be put into question by the presence of such as sister site. Furthermore, legal services are not as easy to compare as, say, insurance or financial products. There are many kinds of services and many areas of law. I’m not going to comment further until the site is up and running and we can all see what exactly it is they are offering. Suffice to say that Legal Beagles is no longer a site run purely for the benefit of its users. Whether it ever was, is another matter.