Lawyer SEO Marketing Guide 

LEARN THE LATEST LAWYER SEO TIPS AND TRICKS TO INCREASE YOUR LEAD GENERATION EFFORTS

LAWYER SEO

PREFACE

 

Picture this: you’re in your kitchen, about to make lunch. You wanted something that’s very specific today, but you forgot the exact recipe. What do you do?

That’s right, you Google it.

It’s so common a practice that it seems silly to narrate all that. It’s so mundane and seemingly uninteresting because we do it all the time. That said, the world has been changing. The internet has, over time, become a more significant part of our lives. This also means that the world (and our practices) have begun to shift towards it. SEO exists because of the internet and its fast-expanding usage—to ignore its presence is just deliberately avoiding inevitable progress.

Marketing is difficult, no matter which type of industry you are in. This is even more so in the legal industry, where firms and individuals are often required to do everything with tact. It’s extremely in-demand, but also highly competitive.

 

However, there seems to be an aversion to legal marketing; and it’s ultimately an unfounded assumption that’s rooted from the refusal to adjust to changing times.

In this E-Book, we’re going to look at:

  • Why Legal Marketing is Essential

  • A Guide to DIY Law Firm Marketing

  • Your Legal Marketing SEO Checklist

 

It will hopefully shift the perspective on Legal Marketing as a whole, as well as present the internet as a new cultural element that’s never going to go away. Once your perspective has changed on the matter, we can guide you through the very basics of SEO—a crash course that’s going to get you started.

 

Why Legal Marketing is Essential

These days, online marketing isn’t just an additional promotion anymore. It’s no longer an extra adage to get ahead of the competition. The explosive rise of the internet has made it more relevant for people to be on search engines rather than on lifestyle magazines. 

In fact, a lot of printed media, whether it’s for entertainment, politics, or current events, have ceased doing physical copies and have moved on to digital newsletters. For more than a decade, Kindle and .epub formats have become newer, cheaper, and more convenient alternatives to physical books.

It isn’t a new thing to hop on while it’s early, it’s already widely used. At this point, erasing or refusing to put your presence online is deliberately putting yourself or your law firm at a disadvantage.

There Are Some Unfounded Stigmas Attached to It

The idea of Law Firm marketing is fairly new—compared to other industries, that is. It has only been made legal a few decades ago. Until the 1970’s Law Firms weren’t allowed to promote themselves in any way. 

Not even a mere newspaper ad that has your name and office phone number. It was almost unthinkable that a lawyer could have sincere intentions of protecting their clients’ legal rights while they’re finding ways to keep their practice afloat.

Let’s address the elephant in the room here: legal services aren’t treated (at least perceived) as typical consumer products. There’s a fear of putting legal services in the same box as clothing lines or gimmicky merchandise. 

There’s a presumption that marketing the legal services you offer like you would a salon or a fast food restaurant is inherently bad. Practicing Law is viewed with professional sincerity, and any effort to treat like such is almost a blasphemy. There’s an assumption that treating legal practice with too much focus on its monetization is a bad look.

But here’s the thing: legal marketing isn’t always bad.

Marketing isn’t a suspicious front to mask fraud. It isn’t always used for predatory adverts and getting people to buy things they don’t need. Legal services are a need—and heavily sought after, in fact. Making it more difficult for people to find what they need is disadvantageous to both clients and law firms. 

A lot of charities and well-meaning non-profit organizations utilize the same basic methods to get their message out there, to inform, and to get people to act. While this isn’t to say that there aren’t companies and individuals trying to take advantage of consumers, marketing in its most basic definition is just putting yourself out there.

While legal marketing doesn’t define your capability as a practicing lawyer, it can affect your place in this highly competitive market. Clients who don’t know much about the Law will often do a basic area search and hire the next available attorney they can afford—and if you don’t put yourself out there, people cannot find you.

The Internet is Changing Everything, and Fast

A lot of things have changed in the past two decades. People no longer browse yellow pages to file divorce papers. They no longer walk down the street to find the next available law office. You don’t see high-profile celebrities rifling through newspapers for the name of a lawyer who handled the same legal trouble as theirs. To ignore the fact that the internet has changed our day-to-day ignores the changing nature of how people seek legal assistance.

In a sense, the huge, drastic change here is the way people find information. Twitter, for example, isn’t just for art archives and celebrity updates. It has—for better or worse—become some people’s main source of news. Regardless of your opinion on how Twitter and its users handle information, it’s clear proof of the internet’s reach.

 

Not to mention, thousands of universities and colleges from all over the world have opened up online classes and conferences that give participants actual, real world credits. Some of these universities promote their programs on Twitter and Google pages, too. The internet is no longer exclusively for entertainment and informal communication, it is now used for information dissemination in all forms.

Adding to the discussion of Legal Marketing being fairly new, most of the pushback stems from not acknowledging that things have changed. People find the services they need differently than they used to. This isn’t something to be nostalgic about, it is something to be acknowledged. 

People don’t have to travel or use up gas money to do a survey on the best-reviewed Law Firms in the area. In fact, they don’t have to rely on biased hearsay; they only need to consult a few people on the internet and ask them about their experience with someone or a company. If not, they’ll do some research themselves, and find Law Firms that might sound appealing to their current situation.

The world has made it easy and accessible for clients of all types—clients who wouldn’t have known they have a legal right to sue someone of something even—to find assistance. 

Why not help make it easy for them, too? It’s more likely for most legal services to have an online presence in the following years than it is for them to stay in their humble, in-person environments.

Consider these two common methods you see online:

  • Video Blogs and Infographics

    • Medical professionals have taken to Youtube, uploading informative and engaging videos that get curious people to know about the next procedure they might want to go through. Licensed psychiatrists do “sit-downs” in front of the camera, slightly informal but strangely welcoming, and discuss the basics of the most common mental or psychological disorders. There are advisers for divorce, child adoption, and child support that make educational videos on the basics of the process.

 

  • Informative Blog Entries, How-Tos, and Reviews

    • Those who don’t like to be on camera start informative blogs. They post easy-to-digest content that might help them with their present concerns. Computer experts write basic instructions on how to get rid of dangerous malware. Make-up artists write reviews of the new product releases in the last month. Fitness experts list a variety of foods and exercises to improve someone’s physical health.

 

These don’t only earn them money from video and clickable blog adverts, it gets people to click on their website—or look them up and seek their services. That’s it. You’re not advertising something that you cannot deliver. 

You are not promising viewers and readers one thing only to give them another. You are simply putting your name (or law firm’s) name out there, not selling them something they absolutely don’t need.

Marketing yourself and your law firm requires careful consideration as well. You don’t want to come off as overly-eager, but you also have to present yourself as someone who’s going to be helpful to them. 

You don’t want your attorney marketing strategies to come off as extremely aggressive and unprofessional, either. Legal marketing has always been complicated, but some firms have been successful with it.

An Educated Client is Always A Good Thing

Sometimes, people don’t seek legal services because they don’t know they need them. They get injured from faulty construction and don’t file claims against the building’s owner. They endure years and years of employment bullying and discrimination thinking there’s nothing they could do. 

People don’t question their inheritance, even when they have suspicions about a Will’s validity. Going back to the discussion of how professionals market themselves online, this lack of client education can be addressed through informative legal content.

If it’s the stigma lawyers are worried about, they should look at all the informative content online—it is helpful, digestible, and professional. Considering how most people are on the internet anyways, they’d be more thankful to have the information out there.

Much like people don’t buy essential or proxy items without researching, it’s the same thing when they’re seeking legal services for important litigation claims.

For example:

 

If a job applicant experienced deliberate discrimination that ultimately led them to be terminated without cause, they don’t always know if their claims hold any water. So what do they do? They google it. They try to figure out what Wrongful

Termination means, find lists of red flags related to employment discrimination, they search for specific laws that might fit their situation. Once they come to an attorney, they will know which questions to ask.

 

If they didn’t know about employment discrimination laws in the first place, educating themselves might be the reason they sought an attorney at all.

Ultimately, it’s clients who decide they want help with something. They’re the ones who will look for an attorney in the sea of online recommendations and reviews. However, they might only be able to start acting on something because they now know they have to.

Marketing your law firm can get very expensive very quickly. In fact, the legal industry is among the top 5 industries in which to advertise. This e-book is meant to provide you with tips and guidance for marketing a law firm on a small budget based on our own experience. 

Additionally, this e-book will help you build a bridge to a long term and sustainable solution. Most likely you don’t want to do all the marketing yourself forever, and the tips presented here will help you put yourself in a position to delegate some of your marketing strategies to a professional when the time comes.

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Law Firm Marketing 

When it comes to online promotion, it’s not enough to just maintain a website. There’s an infinite sea of similar content online, so posting promotional content on your own might not be as effective as you might have initially thought. Sure, you can ask friends and family to share links to your website, but that might not be enough.

The internet is an expansive environment that can be accessed by anyone—including the people you don’t know. Your friends and family might refer your services to their own circles, but it is almost no different from getting them to pass your name around through word-of-mouth. 

You can be content with that, but that doesn’t really take full use of the internet. Some clients don’t even have friends and family who can point them in the right direction, so it’s good that they find you too.

So, yes. It doesn’t start and end with an informative website. It has to be visible in Google searches; and there are years of constantly-changing practices that were done to make sure of this visibility.

LAWYER SEO: How Not To Get Lost in the Search Results

Today, search engine optimization (SEO) is based mainly on Google. However, the practice we now know as SEO predates Larry Page and Sergey Brin's co-founding of the world's most popular search engine. 

While it may be argued that SEO and all things search engine marketing started with the publication of the first website in 1991, or even with the introduction of the first online search engine, the tale of SEO "officially" begins in 1997.

We now use search engines to find content, perform research, shop for goods and services, entertain ourselves, and communicate with others. A search engine sits at the heart of almost every online destination. Search engines have evolved into a unifying force and a compass for daily life.

 

The search engine landscape was highly competitive in the last decade of the 1900s. AltaVista, Ask Jeeves, Excite, Infoseek, Lycos, and Yahoo were among the search engines available to us.

 

In the beginning, on-page activities were the only way to do some early form of SEO. This included adjusting for things like:

  • Assuring that the material was appropriate and of high quality

  • Enough text had been written into the page

  • The HTML tags you used were correct and relevant

  • You had both internal and external links within the content

 

In this period, the trick to ranking well was to just simply repeat your keywords enough times throughout your web pages and meta tags.

As you can see, SEO as a form of marketing isn’t new. When you’re thinking about how much the internet has affected our daily lives, it’s easy to get left behind. To get a feel of how the landscape has changed for marketing yourself online, we can look at how SEO developed into its Google-centric algorithm today.

How SEO Came to Be

In the year 2000, Yahoo made the worst strategic decision by partnering with Google and allowing Google to control their organic results instead of Inktomi. Before that, Google was a relatively unknown search engine. 

The result was that every Yahoo search result said "Powered by Google," effectively bringing their biggest rival to the world, and Google became a household name.

Google's web crawler and PageRank algorithm were game-changers in terms of information retrieval. Both on-page and off-page considerations were considered by Google. In the most basic sense, Google's algorithm was based on the premise that "if people are talking about you, you must be important."

Over the next decade, it became a scramble to get as many ties as possible to improve one's ranking. In the coming years, Google will have to solve problems with links, which has become a highly exploited strategy. In the year 2000, the Google Toolbar for Internet Explorer was released, enabling SEO professionals to see their PageRank ratings.

This ushered in a new age of unsolicited email requests for link exchanges. So, with PageRank, Google effectively added a currency metric to its linking. 

Today, domain authority is similarly misunderstood. 

Starting in 2000, Google's organic results got some competition in the form of AdWords advertising. Following updates to Google algorithms like “Florida”, SEO became much more difficult because it became much more relevant than simply repeating keywords a certain number of times.

Personalization & Localization

In 2004, Google and other major search engines began to improve the results for searches with a regional purpose (e.g., a restaurant, plumber, or some other type of business or service provider in your city or town). By 2006, Google had released a Maps Plus Box, which I thought was pretty cool at the time.

Around the same time, Google and other search engines started using end-user data, such as search history and preferences, to personalize search results. 

This meant that the results you saw in a coffee shop could be different from what anyone sitting next to you saw while searching for the same question. Nofollow tags were developed in 2005 as a way to fight spam. SEOs first used this tag as a means of sculpting PageRank.

This is why it’s so important to narrow down the people you want to reach. Are your clients coming from California? Do you only cater to one state, or do you frequently travel between one state to another? Considering how specific laws can be, you can’t just present your law firm to the world without telling the reader your specifics (such as location, area of practice, specializations).

Google’s Universal Searches

Beginning in 2007, we started to see the quest evolving in new and exciting ways. Both of these changes were made to improve the user's search experience. The search results had previously consisted of ten blue links. 

Then Google started combining organic search results with other vertical results such as news, video, and photographs. Since the Florida update, this was by far the most significant improvement to Google search and SEO.

Lawyer SEO Strategies And Tactics

Digital marketing can be seen as a single approach inside a broader business growth plan, depending on how you look at it. 

There are several choices within that strategy. This means you'll need a new approach to figure out which options are best for helping the law firm achieve its target using digital marketing.

A new SEO tactic could emerge from that strategy. However, SEO needs its own plan because implementing SEO without a structure for achieving the objectives will not yield the desired results.

 

An example:

Say, your goal is to increase your firm’s clientele by 15%. The first move is to devise a plan for achieving your objective. 

This may include strategic choices like organic optimization, advertising, fixing and optimizing your UX, and social media presence.

These are not the entire plan, though. It is not a fully fleshed strategy. You must examine each strategy and consider how you can use it to achieve the set target.

What To Plan For

You may be a little confused if you're new to SEO. A plethora of websites, books, and guides are available. The fact that SEO is constantly changing is part of the reason why so many people are frustrated by it. 

Google's algorithm evolves, so you'll need to stay on top of it. You need to persuade Google that it is worth sending searchers to your law firm’s website. 

There isn't a single golden SEO element that takes precedence over all others. 

However, since it is a practice that has seen years of testing, experimentation, and data, there are a few things that usually come up in SEO-related content. Consider the most popular discussion pieces of SEO:

 

  • Links

    • As long as Google has existed, links have been an important part of SEO. Links act as 'votes' for your content, indicating to Google that other websites find it useful and important.

    • The higher your site ranks for similar keywords, the more high-quality, appropriate links you acquire.

  • Search Rankings

    • Do you need links to rank high on the searches? Not really. The algorithm at the moment favors the use of proper search terms. It should match how people normally type when they look for something on Google.

    • For example: if you’re an employment attorney, you don’t fill your website with broad terms. You have to use “employment attorney” or specify which state you’re practicing in. This also makes it easier for clients to find the exact service they need.

  • Content Volume

    • The more content you have is better, but if you're churning out short, insignificant write-ups that are only there to make space isn't too good either. These days, most SEO experts will tell you to write long, high-quality content that people are likely to refer to friends or go back to after they came upon it.

    • Also, the more information you have in one place, the more people it's likely going to attract. Quantity is good, but consistency is best.

 

What is "High-Quality Content"?

 

When creating material, there are a few things to bear in mind:

  • While keywords are still important, context is even more important. Google's crawlers are now analyzing the context and looking for secondary keywords that are relevant to the searcher's purpose.

  • Titles, meta descriptions, alt attributes, H1 tags, and URLs should all have simple, keyword-rich titles. These elements indicate to Google that your site is essential, which aids in its ranking. Relevance is more important than duration. According to Google, the amount of content required to make a page satisfactory is determined by the page's subject and intent.

 

In other words, make sure that all of your content is written for people first and Google optimization second.

Consider Metadata

On the search results page, metadata refers to the title and lines of text that appear.

It's not difficult to improve the metadata. Here are a few things you can do:

  • Use keywords and variations in the title and summary that are important but not redundant.

  • Maintain brevity, but not excessive brevity. Shoot for fewer than 160 characters in your meta descriptions, as Google will cut them off.

  • Make sure consumers know what to expect by being straightforward and succinct.

  • Consider metadata to be content advertisements.

  • Use the meta to inspire clicks, which will lead to increased traffic.

 

User Experience (UX) is One of the Biggest Factors in SEO

The quality of your website's user interface (UX) has a big impact on its Google ranking. User experience is difficult to quantify because it is influenced by numerous factors such as site infrastructure and layout, content, and so on. 

However, this can simply be addressed by having an internet-savvy friend or relative test out your site and give feedback based on that experience.

You’d be surprised at the amount of useful feedback you can get from these simple tests. Was it hard for them to get your contact information? Were there some bugs that ruined the entire experience for them? 

Is there enough content for them to go through? Is the current color scheme making it really hard to read? Remember, you’re trying to present your law firm to a potential client still deciding whether to hire you—and first impressions do matter.

Here is a checklist you might want to look at:

  1. Make sure people want to stay and read. Ensure that the time spent on the website and the click-through rate (CTR) are both high and that the bounce rate is minimal. These signals aren't specifically linked to rankings, however, optimizing the site for high interaction will help indirectly. Google likes it when its users are satisfied.

    • This is why High-Quality Content helps. Users are more likely to stick around when they see something useful or interesting.

    • For example, an article on “Personal Injury” is likely to keep a user’s attention when it has the complete details of the topic. The write-up should hopefully include: digestible explanation of “Personal Injury” in Law, specific details on how it’s normally handled in the client’s state, possible litigation options, possible damages, and “How-Tos” and “Checklists” on what an individual should do after an accident (more can be added, but the point being it has to be as informative, engaging, and useful to the reader as possible).

  2. Make it easy to navigate through your website. Improve the navigation on your website so that users can easily locate the page they're searching for. The use of navigation bars, drop-down lists, internal links, and a site search can all be beneficial.

    • For example, a potential client has been reading your article on “Personal Injury”. They are now quite convinced that they have a case. They think they might actually need a lawyer. They might try to open a new tab, but chances are they’ll look into the current page they’re already on. If it takes too long or if it’s outright impossible to find your law firm’s information, the client will only give up and search through a new tab.

    • If your website is hard to read, crashes constantly, or is generally inaccessible in any way, the reader will move on to another search result. Since legal services are highly competitive, it’s likely for that potential client to find a new law firm in minutes.

  3. The loading time of a website is crucial. Your website should load in under two seconds in an ideal world. Compression of images, optimization of code and structure, and faster servers can all help. To get a sense of where you stand, use Google's PageSpeed Insights.

 

UX will possibly become much more critical in the future as Google becomes smarter. So now is the time to brush up on the fundamentals and put them into action on your website.

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Smartphones Alongside the New Internet Culture

 

While laptops and desktop computers are still widely used for internet searches, it’s important to acknowledge the importance of mobile devices at current times. More and more apps and services have been developed around the smartphone—you can do your shopping, order food, pay bills, and find recipes. It’s because of how closely people are keeping their phones in their proximity that it’s become a day-to-day essential.

What do most people do when they need to know something, anyway? They pick up their phone, open Google, and search for answers. Whether the user is on a train or lying in bed late at night, they have access to the internet. 

It is more convenient to open an app on your phone than to get up in the middle of the night and start your computer. These days, people might screenshot or copy information (like a law firm’s contact details) and save it straight to their phones.

Google switched to mobile-first indexing in 2018, which means that the search engine ranks your site based on mobile versions of the site. Since mobile devices account for more than half of all internet traffic, Google's decision makes sense.

The Most Popular Search Engines Across the Internet

Before starting on tools, you first need to look into the different types of search engines. This is important, because this will decide how you will go about posting your content. 

You don’t want to adjust your content’s visibility on less popular search engines, because this ultimately limits the number of potential site visitors you’ll attract. 

Each search engine is programmed with different algorithms, and will return searches different from others.

So, before you start creating your content, consider signing up or adjusting your SEO to more widely-used search engines.

 

  1. Google

    • A lot of SEO experts work around Google. As mentioned, it’s become almost a cultural norm for people to “Google things” when they need answers. While it’s true that you can find video “How-to’s”, a written text of what to do next will suffice. The more time people save, the better—that’s why you see people “Google” recipes, medical symptoms, state laws prohibiting specific things they want to do.

    • The obvious benefit of ranking high on Google is the vast amount of traffic that can be generated. As mentioned, it is so heavily ingrained in our day-to-day rituals that most internet-savvy people are going to go on it to look up anything. If you ever see a search bar that says “Powered by Google”, the results you're getting are fetched via the same algorithm as you would when you type into Google.com.

    • The disadvantage here is that everyone else needs this traffic, so organic search is the most competitive, and paid search is frequently much more costly than on other pages. If you ever see “Ad” in bold and attached to the beginning of the link, that’s when you know that it’s a paid promotion.

    • Furthermore, many argue that Google is pushing searchers away from clicking through to websites and toward satisfying their needs and intents directly on the Google website via featured snippets, reduced organic results on the first page, increases in paid search results, and other strategies, making competition more expensive with less possible reward.

  2. Youtube

    • Just in the past decade, Youtube has risen to become a business behemoth. It started more like a social media space where people can interact through video uploads and comments, and has since turned into a source of information and entertainment. It has so much traffic that it has basically replaced cable television for a large portion of the population.

    • It's clear to see the appeal of such huge traffic, just as it is with Google, but that's also the drawback for marketing. The effect of just using YouTube as one traffic vessel cannot be overstated if it is good. However, standing out in a sea of over 500 hours of content posted to YouTube each minute can be difficult. It can be costly to contend on this one with paid options under the Google Ads system.

    • When you do decide to post content for SEO on Youtube, you're likely to experience what most of its creators' experience—the struggle to be seen. Youtube is notorious for its strict copyright policies, monetization guidelines, and age restrictions. Spend enough time on the site, and you'll hear creators complain about the algorithm that favors a very narrow list of content. With that on top of the competitive sea of videos, it gets harder to put your content out there.

  3. Amazon

    • While you can’t directly promote your Law Firm on Amazon, it doesn't diminish the fact that there’s massive traffic that goes into the site. If you or another member in your firm has written books and other legal guides, it might be a good idea to put it up there.

    • In reality, some may argue that having a lot of great and useful content will help you rank on Google and attract those trying to find out what your books are. However, unless you're on Amazon, you won't be where they are when they're looking to convert.

    • The disadvantage would be that competition is tough, prices and other information are easy to compare to rival goods, and selling here can be very expensive at times. This isn't your main goal, though. If members of your firm have legitimate products like books, links from Amazon to your website really adds to the number of external links that get people to go to your site.

  4. Microsoft Bing

    • While most SEO practice today is entered around Google, Bing still holds relevance in the current internet culture. It is the default search engine preinstalled in Microsoft Edge on Windows-run computers—which in itself is a huge deal.

    • A lot of users don’t tend to mess with presets on their devices, and will happily use Bing because it is accessible. It gives back search results the same way, and while a developer might not have the same opinion on them, the average user really won’t mind.

    • Although Microsoft Bing does not have Google's market share, it is competitive in many markets, including the United States and the United Kingdom. Their algorithms aren't as advanced as Google's, but they're making significant progress in the AI space.

    • Because of this disparity in sophistication, they are easier to follow, anticipate, and configure for. Although this will not be the case indefinitely, it is likely to be the case in the near future.

  5. Facebook

    • Facebook’s user base is huge. It’s so widely-used by people of all ages across different countries. If there’s anything to look for when you’re promoting your services, it is to make sure that the medium reaches as many people as possible. However, the wide user base also contributes to a disadvantage: competition.

    • It is not enough to create a page for your law firm. As mentioned earlier, you can make a website or a page and ask friends and family to share them around their personal circles. However, sharing them around personal circles is no different than having people you know verbally passing on information about your law firm to other people. The legal marketing you're looking for is being able to reach people who might not know about your practice and services outside of your own social bubble. 

    • In conjunction with that, paid ads can be very expensive on Facebook. Depending on the target audience, the cost per click will range from a few bucks to hundreds of dollars, making it less expensive than Google Ads but still expensive. Some may say that the traffic isn't as targeted as it should be.

    • While Google Ads traffic is based on search searches, which lends an implicit actual relevance, a lot of Facebook advertising is based on job titles, places, interests, and other demographic details. You start to lose some of your relevance. It is, however, a perfect way to get in front of people who aren't looking for you.

 

Whichever search engine you want to optimize for is definitely left up to you. However, it’s best to follow common practices when you’re starting out. That said, if all these choices confuse you, the best way to go would be to optimize for Google Searches—it’s what most people go for, and more people have studied the algorithm enough for there to be enough resources on it.

So, What's the Big Deal About Search?

Users are important, so the search becomes important. As technology advances, SEO professionals will be faced with new methods of searching, new devices to search on, and new forms of searches (such as voice search or searches conducted by my oven), but one constant will be why people search.

Back then, people used to look through a list of results that included keywords they typed in. People used them for homework, checking stock prices, possibly looking through weather reports. The inspiration for the creation of Google’s search engine was to comb through data on the web for things (like photos) you might want to see.

It’s clearly evolved since then. Nowadays, you’re not just visiting Google to look for photos to use on a school presentation. It’s no longer a tool you use to look up a friend or a foreign location. 

It has been so ingrained in our day-to-day lives that we started using it for instantaneous answers to whatever questions we have. These days, the questions we ask Google are no longer “What’s Wrongful Termination?” or “What’s a Law Firm?”, it’s now “How do you file a personal injury claim in my state?” and “How do you decide which lawyer to hire?” 

In other words, today's searchers are looking for ways to solve problems, finish personal tasks, or to generally do something.

The Consumer Journey

When a user searches, they are on a journey. The term "consumer decision journey" is often used by marketers. It's just a fancy way of referring to a user's journey from task inception to completion, and the majority of these journeys begin with a simple search.

The consumer decision journey is a process. 

The search has to progress from simply reading words on a page to comprehending the user's purpose at each stage of the journey. Search has progressed from simply delivering the right content to the right user at the right time to assist them in completing their mission. 

It's all about assisting the consumer on their journey for search marketers. You help them out—and ideally—convince them to buy your offered services before considering others.

However, customer journeys are no longer limited to a single device. Users can be on their mobile device, continue their research on their tablet or work laptop, and then complete their purchase on their home computer.

 

Computers and phones aren't the only places where you can conduct a search.

 

Watches, smart glasses, Bluetooth speaker assistants, and even kitchen appliances can now be used to browse. This is why modern SEO has started considering voice command searches, too.

While there is some healthy debate on whether this has always been the case, SEO has evolved into what we'll refer to as "real marketing" in today's always-on, hyper-connected world.

The emphasis of today's SEO is on:

  • You must understand how users interact with searches

  • Derive insights based on data

  • Content planning

  • Problem-solving

 

Any legal marketing strategy or campaign should follow three main tenets:

  1. Attract.

  2. Involve.

  3. Convert.

 

However, the first step of the quest is strongly emphasized: attract. It is by far the hardest to do. This is why getting people to click on your links or website is prioritized. 

You want to be as visible and as accessible as possible—it’s why you want to rank high on the Google searches in the first place.

It is no longer sufficient to have a fantastic service offering. 

Clients must be aggressively sought out through a variety of platforms and sources. This is why, despite arguments from clients or design agencies to the contrary, every webpage is an SEO page.

If a webpage is responsible for attracting, involving, or converting visitors, it should include a significant SEO component.

A successful LAWYER SEO can help with not only content but also:

  • Navigate between different versions of the same page.

  • Resolve technical problems that cause search engines to ignore the content.

  • Correct server configuration.

  • Integrate social media, advertising, artistic, user interface, paid search, or analytics into your strategy.

  • Look for ways to improve the overall look and functionality of your website.

 

A successful SEO expert comprehends not only the searcher but also the competitive environment. It's not enough to simply comprehend the user's mission. Search marketers must know what other solutions are available in the market and how they can bridge the gap and provide a better solution for the user's challenge.

From keywords on blogs to full-service ads, we've come a long way. Assisting production, information architecture, user interface, content strategy, marketing, social, and paid media departments, SEO professionals get to take on different roles.

Why Content Matters In Lawyer SEO

You must commit to the grind of constantly producing optimized content if you want organic search exposure, rankings, and traffic. They can propel any website to the top of search engine rankings when they're at their best. 

But only when they're at their best are they at their best. And they can incur Google penalties that are almost impossible to reverse when they're at their worst.

The explanation for this is simple: without optimized content, you will not rank in search engines. However, as we've already mentioned briefly, it's essential to recognize several factors at play here:

  • On the one hand, there is content production. During the development process, ensure that the content is audience-centric and adheres to the guidelines outlined in the previous section.

    • Audience-centric means concentrating on what the audience wants to hear rather than what you want to say. Producing valuable and appropriate content is the name of the game if you're going to rank in search engines, as we've seen.

  • The scientific aspects of optimization are on the other side of the equation. Keywords, meta names, meta descriptions, and URLs are all things to consider.

 

Google's algorithm favors content that a huge amount of users are clicking through at a concentrated volume at a time. If you've been on Youtube in the last five years, you would have seen the rise of internet trends—they could be anything from challenges, to fashion, to news, to certain types of media.

An Example:

This works almost the same way in search engines. Before the movie Frozen (2013) came out, typing in the keyword “Frozen” on google would have returned a few culturally relevant results (such as frozen food, frozen dessert, how to make frozen yogurt, etc.).

Since the rise of the huge franchise, more and more people started searching for the movie instead, which was quickly picked up by the search engine, and ultimately changed the search pages.

 

When applied to educational content for legal services, you only need to predict how the average user is going to use the searches. 

They aren’t going to search for specific laws to the letter, they are going to ask about their specific case in the simplest way possible.

So, when you’re thinking about marketing your law firm, you don’t just slap on a list of state laws and call it a day. Make it as simple and accessible as you possibly can. 

While you’re at it, make sure the reader knows you can provide what they’re looking for. They won’t be on the searches if they don’t have a specific need, anyway.

 

Why Keywords Are Important

 

SEO keywords can range from single words to complex sentences, and they're used to notify website content in order to boost organic search traffic. They are used by your target audience when looking for information about your law firm. 

“Keywords, when properly researched and optimized, serve as a connection between your target audience and your website.”

Basically, keywords are specific words people type into the searches. You already know what the most relevant content is, now you need to find what the most popular keywords are used to look for said content. 

While “Attorney for Businesses” is well and good, if not a lot of people are using it in the searches, it makes it harder to find your law firm. If more common keywords like “Business Lawyer” are more widely used, you should go for that. 

Google not only picks it up and pushes it further into the results, it also makes sure that more people are going to find it.

  • Primary and Secondary Keywords

    • Primary keywords are also known as "targeted" or "priority" keywords. They are used to identify the most important keywords. These words can be applied to the whole website or only a single page. All other keywords you're targeting and/or adding are classified as secondary (also known as "tertiary" or "supporting") keywords.

    • Secondary words are those that you're loosely optimizing for but aren't considered a high priority in certain cases. Secondary keywords may also help you get the most out of your primary keyword targeting by acting as semantic or long-tail support.

 

  • Here’s an example for a “Divorce Lawyer” Search:

    • Primary: “Divorce Lawyer”

    • Secondary: “Affordable”, “Best”

  • Global and Local Keywords

    • A location-based keyword could be one of two things, depending on how it's used:

    • Searching for something nearby: this is a broader search that uses keywords like “near me” and “nearby”.

      • Remember that Google Maps is sophisticated these days, and it should be able to return a few options to the searcher.

      • This can work if you put your law firm office location on Google Maps, but it can also pop up when Google detects your specified location on your website.

    • A specific location: As an example, a user might type in “Los Angeles Estate Planning Attorney” into the searches.

      • This is why it’s important to specify where you conduct your practice. You might have someone clicking on your website, but if they’re in a different state altogether, they would not go on to hire your firm for legal services.

      • Users are also likely to look up relevant state laws, so it’s best they find resources that match their current needs. If they’re from a different county or state, depending on their case, they might just close the tab and start anew.

      • While it’s good to take advantage of Google’s wide reach, you have to remember that SEO is meant to reach potential clients.

 

Organic keywords once were easy to access in Google Analytics, Adobe Omniture, or other data analytics, which might shock you if you're new to SEO. However, things began to shift in 2010, when Google began quietly removing keyword info. A considerable number of organic keyword exposure will be stripped from late 2011 to the following year.

Although there are some limitations, as mentioned above, SEO has become a well-known practice that third-party tools have been developed for it. Not only for keywords but everything pertaining to SEO in general (We have suggestions for Free SEO Tools in the later sections of this e-book).

Why Links Are Important

SEO involves a lot of redirection. When you provide educational “How-To’s”, you put in links that will send a potential client to your information page. When you do brief tutorials on Youtube, you leave links to a landing page with your contact details. SEO used to be referred to as a “Funnel”, where you get people to look into a specific landing page of your liking.

Web ranking was heavily focused on keyword use within the page's content in the early days of SEO, long before Google existed. Keyword use was the simplest way to get pages to rank in the absence of sophisticated search engine algorithms. The rationale was simple: the more times a keyword phrase appeared on a website, the more likely it was the page's true purpose.

Unfortunately, SEO experts at the time took advantage of this scheme and abused it by overusing the targeted keyword phrase to boost their rankings. Keyword stuffing is the modern term for this technique. This causes websites to rank for keyword phrases even if they don't have anything to say about the topic.

 

A new way of looking at and evaluating websites in terms of what ranks and what doesn't was needed, and it should go beyond content analysis alone.

 

Types of Links: Internal, Inbound, and Outbound

 

A link, also known as a hyperlink, is a clickable object on a website that takes you to another page. Links may take the form of text, pictures, or buttons. We may categorize links based on where they lead users, whether it's to another page on the same site or to a different site.

  • Internal Links

    • Internal links are links within your own website that connect pages. Internal links are links on a page that connect to other pages within the same domain; search engines decide this by looking at the domain name; if the links on a page link to other pages within the same domain, they are called internal links.

    • Here are a few you might use an internal link for:

      • Standard Site Interface. Links that are typically found in the top bar menu, sidebar menu, and footer of all sites. This is typically based on the site design and how topics are categorized and subcategorized to create topics and subtopics that range from broad to specific.

        • This is where you’ll see basic information related to your law firm. If your content is mostly digestible legal content, you might categorize them through your areas of practice (i.e., Personal Injury, Criminal Defense, Business Litigation, Family Law, etc.).

      • Related Pages. A portion of a page that links to other pages that are relevant to the page's topic. Users benefit from this because it suggests sites that the user was most likely searching for.

        • For example, the user is on an article for Personal Injury Claims in motorcycle accidents. Suppose there’s a quick discussion of “Pain and Suffering” or “Wrongful Death”, you can link them to a more general or exhaustive article on any of those specific matters.

      • Sitemaps for Users. A sitemap is a single page that connects to all of the site's other pages. According to usability reports, there are three groups of people who access a website: those who use the standard navigation, those who use the search box right away, and those who go straight to the sitemap. Sitemaps may be confusing for very large sites, so in these situations, the sitemap can only include the key category areas rather than every page on the web.

  • Inbound Links

    • The clickable text of a link or the alternative text of an image in image links is known as anchor text. The anchor text informs search engines about the destination page's subject. Now, the anchor text of a link is one of the most critical aspects of inbound links that search engines consider. 

    • This has been exploited in the past, allowing link bombing, which involves using the same phrase you want to rank for in the anchor text of thousands of inbound links, regardless of the page's content or relevance.

    • Many previous Google updates, including the Penguin update, addressed this problem, where too much keyword-focused anchor text may appear unnatural and have a negative impact on ranking. After the Penguin update, having natural anchor text in your inbound links has become increasingly important.

    • Here are a few things to make sure your link-building efforts aren’t wasted:

      • When people add a link to your website on a list, the anchor text is often your brand or company name. As a result, if your keyword-focused anchor text outnumbers your advertised anchor text, this may trigger issues. More branded anchor text is preferable.

        • An example being “Sample Law Firm” is better than a descriptive anchor text that says, “this Law Firm handles Will and Trust Litigation in California”.

      • It's unlikely that many people can use the same anchor text. Not everybody shares your viewpoint or uses the same keywords you normally use. It's extremely unnatural if you keep optimizing for the same anchor text when attempting to obtain links from other pages, and it eventually becomes the majority anchor text and isn't your brand name. It's crucial to see some variety in the anchor text, even if it's just generic anchor text like click here, visit here, website, and so on.

        • For example, you don’t want to use “Personal Injury Lawyer” all the time. You should try using variants like “Car Accident Attorney”, “Car Crash Lawyer”, “Insurance Claims Law Firm”, and the like.

        • In the same vein, you can localize your terms by adding your state to the anchor text, like “Orange County Personal Injury Law Firm” and “California Criminal Defense Lawyer”.

      • The homepage of almost every website is the page with the most inbound links. As a result, if a page on your web is too far away from the homepage, the PageRank would plummet until it reaches the page.

  • Outbound Links

    • Outbound links are basically links to third-party sites. You might come across this in instructional blogs that refer you to more in-depth discussions or more specialized take of the current topic at hand. By practice, high-ranking sites can sometimes sell their links to another company or website.

    • The way SEO professionals use outbound links has changed over time. Some assumed that outbound ties depleted PageRank, lowering its ranking capacity. This may have been true for a number of years. This is the origin of phrases like "PageRank hoarding" and "PageRank channeling."

    • Any outbound link was considered a leak. However, if users need an outbound link, you can use the nofollow link attribute. However, before Google issued a PageRank update in 2009, many SEO practitioners took advantage of this. In summary, PageRank hoarding was no longer effective.

    • This has spawned a slew of experimental practices, including:

      • There shouldn't be too many outbound links. In theory, the whole PageRank leaking logic still holds true today. However, every now and then, you can come across a site with a large number of outbound links that still rank highly. As a result, the rule is to simply do what seems to make sense.

      • Not all outbound ties should be nofollow. The rel=nofollow attribute on links in the a> tag informs search engines that the source should not be credited for ranking purposes. To prevent PageRank from leaking to other pages, it's a good idea to always use the nofollow attribute.

 

Sites of high quality are more likely to connect to other high-quality sites. It's just as important to give as it is to receive ties. Good quality sites uphold the standard of quality that has made them who they are, and if they link out to other sites, they can link to a good quality destination as well. Since this is a common occurrence on high-quality blogs, you can try to emulate it to show search engines that your site is high-quality as well.

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Debunking SEO Misconceptions

 

Getting started in SEO is hard. While it is a well-established practice in legal marketing (and other industries), there are a few assumptions that keep floating around. This might be due to the fact that what we know of the algorithm is derived from studies done by SEO experts.

Google doesn’t really publicize the nitty-gritty details of how their algorithm works, so everything we know are from our own developers and long-time SEO experts who have dedicated their careers to deconstructing the algorithm.

Below are a few common misconceptions that have been debunked before. Knowing these might help ease any initial difficulties that come with starting out.

  • PPC Boosts Ranking

    • This is a common misconception. The theory is that Google would favor websites that invest money with it through pay-per-click ads in organic search results.

    • This is completely untrue. The algorithm used by Google to rank organic search results differs significantly from the one used to evaluate PPC ad placements. Running a paid search advertising campaign through Google at the same time as performing SEO can help your site in other ways, but it will have no direct impact on your ranking.

  • Google's Sandbox

    • Some SEO experts believe that new websites will be automatically suppressed in organic search results for a period of time before being able to rank more openly. Many other SEO experts will argue that this is simply not the case.

    • SEOs that have been around for a long time will provide you with anecdotal proof that supports and refutes the notion of a sandbox. So, what’s the answer?

    • Unofficially, it seems that there is a period of time during which Google seeks to grasp and rate the pages of a new site. This could be compared to a sandbox. It isn’t necessarily suppression, as much as it’s Google’s algorithm taking some time to index or rank the content you are putting out.

  • The Age of a Domain Is a Factor

    • The assumption is that age must be a ranking factor because a website has been around for a long time and is ranking well. While it can be true, age in itself is not the main cause. There are far too many factors that contribute to a site's ranking than just its mere posting date.

    • To explain, here are examples:

      • A website that has been up and running for eight years is likely to have a large number of significant backlinks to its most important sites.

      • A website that has been up for less than four months will find it difficult to compete. The older website tends to rank higher, leading to the inference that age is the deciding factor.

    • So, you will not rank higher by virtue of posting a long time ago. Even if the content you put out is a decade old, if it’s not optimized for Google searches, it still won’t rank high anyway.

  • Getting Penalized for Duplicate Content

    • This is a popular misconception that seems to get more and more overblown as it gets passed on. The theory is that if your website's content is duplicated somewhere on the internet, Google will penalize you.

    • Knowing the difference between algorithmic suppression and manual intervention is crucial to comprehend what is really going on here:

      • A manual intervention, which may result in web pages being deleted from Google's database, would be carried out by a Google employee. Google Search Console will send a notification to the website's user.

      • If your page is caught by an algorithm's filter, it can't rank well. This is known as algorithmic suppression.

    • Since getting both copies of the same thing in the search results is pointless, yours is suppressed. This is not a punishment. This is the algorithm going about its business. Some content-related manual actions are available, but simply copying one or two pages of someone else's content will not activate them. It could, however, get you into more trouble if you don't have the legal right to use the material. It can also reduce the value your website provides to users.

 

How Long Will SEO Take?

As you can see, SEO requires a lot of legwork on your part. It’s only natural to wonder how long you should be doing it before results come in. This will become part of your law firm marketing, after all, so it’s best to get a perspective on it.

While SEO in itself is an on-going study that changes with time, there are three things that can tell you how you’re doing:

  1. Competition

  2. Inbound links

  3. Content

 

There isn't any specific formula that's going to crunch out real numbers, but observing these three is going to allow you to infer and predict how your SEO efforts are going.

Competition

As you would expect, the more websites you have to compete with, the longer it will take to make it to the top of the search engine results. This will follow a consistent trend in which outranking the lower pages is both easier and quicker, but as you ascend the search results, each subsequent move will require substantially more effort and time. This is due to a large number of competitors.

If you type up, say, "Employment Lawyer near me" on Google Search, you'll have a wide range of results. Change up the keywords into a different area of practice, and you'll find the same approximate number of results. As said before, SEO used for legal marketing has become common practice. The more saturated your market is, the more effort should be put into your SEO practices.

Companies (in our case, law firms) are driven into a niche by demand, which leads to increased competition. Because of the competition, they are forced to deliver more lucrative offers, which ensures that in order to stay viable, they must take a greater share of the market. This is an atmosphere that benefits larger businesses with more resources who can afford to employ the best SEO experts in the industry.

If you're in this situation, you're in for a longer and more difficult battle. As a result, you must assess all aspects of our competitors' SEO. You must also examine their activities over the previous few months, as well as continue to monitor their activity in the future.

Don’t worry, you don’t have to do this all by yourself. SEO is such a common marketing practice that there are so many related resources out there.

Inbound Links

It's no secret that ties are still important in SEO, but their effect on how long it takes is determined by a number of other factors. The first is the number of links pointing to your section. More links pointing to your domain can generally help you achieve SEO success faster, but it's not just a numbers game.

In general, a smaller number of high-quality links from relevant websites would have a much greater effect on your rankings than a large number of low-quality links from irrelevant websites. 

This is also critical because high-quality connections are more difficult to obtain, making them more difficult to duplicate for your competitors. In comparison to links created using automated methods, they appear to last longer.

However, the rate at which you earn links, as well as the rate at which you have previously received links, may be important considerations. An abrupt rise, in general, can signify an unnatural scheme to manipulate ranking.

Content

The quality of the content you post on your website has an impact on how easily you see results, and the first thing you should know is that quantity does not always equal quality. Just because you pushed out fifteen legal articles in a day, doesn’t mean it will get some of them to rank high in the search results. However, this also doesn’t mean that super-long content is the way to success, either.

In reality, there is no such thing as a minimum or optimal content length—the content must simply be long enough to solve a visitor's dilemma. There's a fallacy that you should release new content gradually, based on the idea that releasing a lot of new content at once would seem unnatural to Google, lowering your rating.

It's easy to believe this misconception, but Google has officially debunked it. If you have fantastic content ready to go, there's no excuse not to publish it right away from an SEO standpoint. The quicker you put it out there, the better.

Your SEO will take longer if you wait. It's worth remembering that a webpage's age and ranking are linked. As we previously debunked, newer pages do not rate as well as older pages, but this is due to other factors rather than age.

On that note, instead of publishing in bursts, stick to a regular publishing schedule for two reasons:

  • It tells Google that your website is updated regularly, which allows the algorithm to pick up on it more frequently. This aids in the acceleration of search engine optimization efforts.

  • It allows users to visit your website more often, which can help Google detect positive user experience signals and, as a result, accelerate your SEO efforts.

 

It isn't all about producing material, though. Deleting content can also help shorten the time it takes to complete your SEO. The trick is deciding which content to hold, boost, and remove. Finally, the trick is to consistently produce original, usable content that meets the needs of your audience.

Again, try looking for real-time trends. What’s the most common topic discussed on forums and social media right now? Which law practice is in-demand? Are there recent celebrity news that boost searches for divorce? Plan your content around that instead of randomly churning out repetitive write-ups.

Furthermore, higher-quality, long-form content appears to get more inbound links than low-quality or shorter content. Although content is relevant in and of itself, it also has an effect on your link-building activities.

Here Are Some Free Tools To Get You Started

Starting out on SEO can be confusing. After all, there are so many things that come with it. While most would say that you do better with practice—and that is true—that doesn’t mean you can’t get a jumpstart. Most people dive into it without knowing a single thing, but when you’re aided by a few tools and guides, the transition will be easier.

Below is a list of tools that even experts might use. You don’t have to be a developer or a technology expert to be able to use them. Even if you become a self-taught master along the way, you still might want to continue using them in the future.

  1. BuzzSumo

    • While BuzzSumo has a great keyword search tool, what it’s mostly used for is its Content Discovery feature. It rifles through forums and blog posts—in other words, relevant content.

    • This is a good way to look into trends. Remember that while you’re looking for keywords all the time, at certain times in any given year, a few topics are more searched than others. Sometimes, big news stories breakout, and people read up on very specific topics of the law. This can also help you decide which topics to write about instead of deciding which related keywords fit each other the most.

  2. Answer The Public

    • Answer The Public is primarily a keyword tool. Say, you want to write about “Probate Law”, typing that into the tool will give you the most popular keywords and related statistics. You don’t want to keyword bomb your entire article, so you should diversify them.

    • Even better, knowing your related keywords helps you expand your reach. Not everyone will phrase it like “Personal Injury Lawyer”, some people will type “Personal Injury Attorney”, “Car crash law firm”, “Lawyers for accidents near me”, and so on.

  3. Twitter

    • Whatever your opinion on Twitter is, you can’t deny that it’s become the bastion of mainstream internet culture. Users are free to interact however they want and with whoever they want. It’s easy to sit there and scroll down for three minutes and come out with an idea of what to write about.

    • Even if you don’t want to waste your energy on scrolling to no end, Twitter’s trending page might help you piece together an idea. Trending topics are updated in real time; click on one, and it filters out related tweets for you. While not an official SEO tool specifically built for our purposes, it’s still a good (and free) resource.

  4. Reddit

    • Much like Twitter, Reddit is a good source of trending topics and timely discussions. You need only visit related threads (there are legal practice ones, too!) and start browsing. Reddit users also tend to upvote the most interesting or relevant posts, so that also helps when you’re trying to gauge what people are thinking.

    • How it greatly differs from Twitter is its—or lack thereof—character limit. Users can post full-on analytic takes without limits, so the discussions tend to be more fleshed out. Trends are still noticeable in forums, even when you don’t have a trending page like Twitter has.

  5. Ahrefs

    • Ahrefs is a fully-featured SEO tool that can help you perform a site audit, monitor your rivals, conduct keyword analysis, find high-performing data, and so forth.

    • This basically tells you the “strength” of any given domain. It’s good to use on your own site, but better when you use it to look into your close competition. That way, you’ll be able to see what they’re doing right—and what you can possibly learn from that.

  6. SEO Search Simulator by Nightwatch

    • SEO Search Simulator is a Google Chrome browser extension. It updates you on how you’re doing in the local and global rankings. Do you, for some reason, want to know how you’re ranking on Google Brazil? You can adjust the tool’s appropriate settings and you’ll get your answer.

 

Getting Started On Your Website

 

Now, you know how important content, links, and keywords are. You now have a basic grasp of how law firm marketing can be implemented through SEO. You know you need to rank, your website's design has to be both appealing and accessible, and you have some basic tools to start.

So, here we are: you're finally building your website.

Remember, when you're producing content, potential clients are going to come in and read them. If they decide they might need your services (at the very least, look into your law firm), you need to redirect them somewhere.

 

You can't just post blogs or daily articles and not have an "about me" page—that defeats the whole point of using SEO for your law firm marketing.

If the same potential clients don’t click to your information details, they still might want to read up on something else. If you don’t have proper tags and site tabs, it might be impossible to find the specific content they might want to read up on.

 

Chances are, they’ll give up trying and close the tab. The more difficult it is to navigate your website, the less likely potential clients are going to stay around.

Note that SEO isn’t just content production—it’s leading people towards you. All the SEO strategies and tactics you are using are all in an effort to get a potential client to click to your appointment page or office contact details.

Use the list below as a checklist of the most common web pages your site should have.

  1. Home Page

    • One look at your home page should tell the reader everything your law firm offers. Do you mainly focus on a specific area of practice? Does your firm primarily handle criminal prosecution? Do you offer free online consultations? Do you only take on the cases of a specific group or minority? Don’t forget to put in your location as well. Your reader has to know which state you practice in.

    • Make it so the user has quick access to multiple important landing pages from the homepage alone—they might want to read some articles, but maybe they’re there to directly set appointments with your firm.

  2. About Page

    • Your about page should have relevant details about your law firm. People go about this in many ways, but the best way to go is that your “About Us” should relate to what you advertised on your home page.

      • An Example:

      • If your home page boasts your law firm’s specialization in employment law, the “About” page should have:

        • History of the firm

        • Labor Law cases you and your colleagues have handled and won

        • Individual practicing attorney’s experience with employment law

    • Imagine pitching yourself to the client. You don’t  just give them a calling card, you get to make a small info section to present yourself.

  3. Contact Page

    • Unlike other websites, a law firm's "Contact Us" page holds more importance. You don't really go to Twitter and immediately click on their contact information. With law firms, however, your office number, address, and other contact details are what clients look for when they decide to hire your services.

    • However you want to run your site—might it be an online appointment, live chat consultation, or a simple call to action with an office phone number—these details must be easy to access.

    • It is, however, advised that you diversify the mediums people can reach you through. While a phone number and an office address are great, not adding an online appointment feature when you can is a wasted opportunity. The key is to make it as easy for the client to reach you through the internet. The more seamless the prospect of hiring you is, the more likely they are going to try to reach out to you.

  4. Offered Services

    • This can vary depending on how your firm presented itself on your homepage. You have to make sure that potential clients are able to “browse” through available legal options. Sometimes, these users don’t know much about litigation, and are therefore going on the searches to find out more. If you assume they know what a specific area of law means—think again. Part of the user experience (UX) is how easy it is for a layman to navigate that read through your content without getting confused.

      • An Example:

      • If your main focus is personal injury claims, then it’s good to organize the presentation—don’t just slap on a personal injury claim tab and be done with it, add sub-categories for each common accident and injury. As mentioned before, not everybody is going to think and type the same keywords as you. When someone gets into a car crash, they don’t always type “personal injury attorney LA”; they sometimes go with “car crash lawyer” or anything similar.

    • The above method can also work if your law firm practices in several areas of the law. If you handle both criminal defense and corporate law, make those tabs and add specific categories to them, too.

5. Blog Posts

  • There is a limit to how many pages can be added to a website until it’s too cluttered. However, the number of related topics for which you can optimize posts for is almost limitless. This is where the use of blog posts comes in.

  • Any subject you can't or won't be able to cover as thoroughly on your main site can be covered in considerable detail in a blog post (or a series of blog posts). Every blog post can be tailored to meet the needs of a particular searcher and used to drive targeted traffic to your website.

  • You can’t put a full list of laws or detailed violations on your “Offered Services” page—because it’s either too broad or will come off too cluttered when you do so—so you discuss it in a blog post instead.

    • For Example:

      • You can post a “COVID-19 update” on state labor laws.

      • You can write a post detailing the legal aspects of a recent popular case.

      • You can create an entire post about common FAQs that would otherwise become miscellaneous content on your “About Us” page.

  • Having visitors to your website, though, isn't enough. Try to ensure your blog posts have links back to your website. That isn't to say you can't use each post to gently inspire readers to learn more about your products and services, but it does mean you can.

 

Your Legal Marketing SEO Checklist

So, you’ve blown through an entire crash course in Law Firm SEO. It’s good to go back to the previous discussions as many times and as long as you need to. 

Right now, you’re about to plan things out, apply what we’ve learned so far, and be on your way to SEO for Law Practice Marketing.

To guide you through the planning process, below’s a quick list of things you need to remember.

1. Set Up A Budget

SEO has a wide range of options—from the way you create your website to how you promote your pages. You can either learn basic HTML on your own or hire a group of developers to do it for you. Either you make the content yourself, or you hire someone to make it for you. You might also want to pay for Instagram Ads from time to time. However you want to go about it, you have to thoroughly plan it out.

Any law firm should include a well-thought-out marketing budget. Then you'll need to figure out how many cases you need to bill every year to reach your revenue goal. You'll be able to sort out the total law firm marketing budget once you've laid the groundwork.

Take note of your law firm's current status (such as whether it is new or well-established). Consider how tough the market is. Are you and other members of your firm in a highly competitive location? It's critical to stick to your law firm marketing budget once you've established it.

2. Create a well-designed website

Your law firm's website is also a potential client's first impression of you. It's your chance to make a good first impression on visitors looking for a lawyer. Use high-quality images, state your services and practice areas clearly and concisely, highlight any awards, recognitions, or significant experiences you have. Most importantly, you have to make sure your contact information is prominently displayed.

A lot of companies like WordPress and Wix have user-friendly settings that allow both beginner and expert website creators to customize the look of their domain.

Remember UX? Make sure the user experience is smooth. If you don't have an entire team behind you, try asking someone (a friend or family member) to try navigating through the site. Most of the time, you'll get some instant feedback on whether it's easy to use or not.

3. Remember Your SEO Lessons

If you want to get the most out of your law firm website, make sure it adheres to SEO practices. It's crucial to make sure the website is well-designed and consistently provides high-quality content. This is what search engines (such as Google) and their users are looking for.

You should also make sure the content has both primary and secondary keywords. Instead of only using the term "lawyer," use the name of your city, find related keywords, and diversify your anchor texts. Doing so will increase your chances of getting attention from potential clients among other competing pages.

If attracting potential clients in a specific area is vital to you, make sure you also have a Google Business page. Be sure to provide a detailed overview of your services as well as your contact details.

4. Get Your Firm on Social Media

You must go where your potential clients are. Since there are so many social media networks/sites to choose from, you'll need to find out which ones are better for your law firm and practice field. Social networking ads, with some careful planning, can have a huge effect on the growth of your law firm.

Are you looking to boost clientele from a pool of work young adults? Try Instagram. Are you considering an older group? Maybe Facebook's the right place for you. The demographics can vary from one state or county to another, but taking time to observe the general user base can help you decide how to go about it.

5. Mind Your Online Reviews

 

Clients may begin leaving reviews once you have a number of online profiles for your law firm. Make it a habit to request an online review at the end of each case, particularly if the client is extremely pleased. However, double-check the advertising laws of your state bar to make sure your request is legal.

If you come across a negative review, don't dismiss it. Always remember that reviews aren't just for you; it's for other potential clients, too. People who use search engines to look for any type of hired service tend to look for reviews—they take it into significant consideration whenever they see positive reviews.

6. Study Market Growth and Try Out Networking

If you're going to attend local networking and bar activities, make sure you get the most out of your time there. Have a plan for how and where you'll spend your energy and time in conversation. Prepare to have fruitful discussions that will help you develop your brand and generate referrals.

Attorney referrals are often an important part of every law firm's market development and revenue growth. As a result, finding out how to develop referral relationships with other lawyers is an investment in a long-term law firm.

Networking doesn't have to be limited to mingling and shaking hands with other attorneys. To communicate with more potential customers—again, simply getting your name out there is part of legal marketing. You may want to suggest coming to public speaking or community events.

7. Always Check Back on How You're Doing

 

It's important to monitor the return on investment of your marketing activities, regardless of how you want to market your law firm. You won't know which campaigns are bringing in new business (and which aren't) if you're not testing them out. Whichever marketing strategy isn't working, you'll want to stop investing in it and focus your efforts on the ones that do.

Perhaps you'd like to create a new website to help you attract more customers.

 

Perhaps you've built up a lot of trust over the years and have a lot of positive feedback from previous customers. The only way to find out is to look at the numbers.

You know how companies ask select customers to fill out feedback forms? You can do the same thing. Inquire how clients learned about you, ask them about who referred you, etc. This is a rather low-tech approach that only produces anecdotal evidence.

Implementing website monitoring is the perfect way to monitor the law firm's digital marketing activities. For most law firms, the free version of Google Analytics—a website analytics tool that helps website owners gain insight into traffic to their sites—is a good solution.

You're All Set!

 

It's safe to say that the internet has fundamentally changed how we as a society operate. However, it is by no means a new phenomenon. Remember when people used to order books and CDs over the phone and had them mailed to a customer's doorstep? This is no different. It is simply the world moving alongside the impressive rise of new technology.

And why shouldn't we ride the wave? The internet has made daily chores easier for everyone. People no longer have to physically visit your law firm for a mere inquiry; they can send you an email. Clients don't have to depend on hearsay; they can now look at reviews and law firm achievements to decide which lawyers they want to hire. There's no longer a need for bulky directories and location sketches—you already have everything you need to know on your phone.

SEO came to be precisely because of these advancements, and it will be a lost opportunity to ignore the obvious advantages. Remember that SEO is all about practice, constant study, and unending adjustments to new algorithm updates and internet trends.

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