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Law firm SEO: A Search Engine Optimization guide for Lawyers

Law firm SEO: A Search Engine Optimization guide for Lawyers

Law firm SEO: A Search Engine Optimization guide for Lawyers

 

Lawyers need preparation for cases just as law firms require clients to exist. Law firm SEO is one amendment that can help your law firm retain a sustainable business. An SEO friendly website can help every business reach its peak by creating exposure organically. A law firm is no different.

A well developed and optimized website will bring more clients to your doorstep. Law firm's higher ranking on Google search pages is equivalent to word of mouth in today's era. If you are new to the digital world, this might seem like a stretch. However, experts and law firms who are already benefiting from digital marketing will beg to differ. Create organic traffic to help raise awareness about your law firm without the hefty pay advertisers ask for by creating an online presence that puts you in the light of your choice.

Basics of Law firm SEO

There are specific keywords that people use to search for lawyers in their city. There are keywords that many people use but, there are some variations as well. For instance, someone who is looking for a lawyer may write 'a law firm near me' whereas; another one might write 'a lawyer near me.' Both of them will get results. There is a chance that the results will be different in both the SERPs (Search Engine result pages). As a law firm, you aim to reach as high as possible on these SERPs to improve reach and business. Law firm SEO practice includes the techniques to increase the people visiting your site so that, they can turn into real clients. Being an SEO lawyer can mean a few different things

  1. In the case of an already existing website, lawyer SEO will have to analyze it.
  2. Forming and implementing strategies to help your business discern from the crowd.
  3. Sustaining positive attorney SEO practices for the long run.

Investing in the long term, effective marketing SEO for an attorney will help you reap the best results possible. Taking the help of a professional SEO firm is usually the best way to go about it. You can work on SEO yourself as well. Whether you look for professional or do it yourself, you need to understand the functioning and techniques of SEO. Here is a thorough guide that will help you.

List of factors that are crucial for lawyer SEO

It is a common misconception that a lawyer SEO marketing only relies on keywords for a good ranking on the SERPs. Keywords are an essential factor, but they are not the only factors. For the best results, the different factors that you will need to keep an eye out for:

  1. Optimizing the website: Your site should have all the critical markers so Google can recognize it. This includes header, content, URL, image, title tag, and Meta attributions. If you do not perform this step correctly, no user will ever find your site.
  2. Navigability: Visiting a site that does not provide relevant links can be traumatizing. If a user has to jump through various pages before getting the information they need, you have already lost them. To ensure that everything is readily available to the user, work on the navigability of the site. It helps make a hospitable first impression.
  3. Content: Content is an integral part of SEO. No, a list of keywords will not do. Google can sort through that kind of content. You need to produce content that is plagiarism free and useful. Also, the keywords should be incorporated into the text organically. This is the only type of content that Google and users will like.
  4. Backlinks: Backlinks are links that take the user to your site. Google has crawlers that crawl through your website quickly and visit the links in the content. When a renowned site backlinks to your website, your website’s ranking improves. You can also provide internal links to improve your ranking.

SEO is an amalgamation of techniques that improve your site's structure, architecture, link profile, and content. SEO for law firms not only works on the keywords but also, works on improving navigation. These techniques make for a good experience for users and search engines. Furthermore, these methods ensure that search engines show your website to people looking for information related to lawyers.

 The use of the most relevant keywords garners better chances of top results on SERPs. The guide will cover the basis on which you should select your keywords and methods to optimize the pages of the website using titles and headings.

Greater visibility = Good SEO techniques

As discussed above, there is a lot more to SEO, than just scattering the relevant keywords in the content. To know what is working and what is not in your lawyer SEO practice, you can opt to utilize internet marketing analysis on your website.

Analysis of the law firm's website

There are several factors that you will need to analyze to understand the website's navigability. An easy and intuitive navigation experience confirms user engagement. The factors to consider are below

  • Dead ends

You click on a link and then, there is some error and page does not load. What do you do? Leave the website. Expect the same from the users.

  • Organize your content

When you organize your website's content comprehensively, users stay on the website for longer. Moreover, search engines find it easier to crawl your site. A detailed roadmap on your website can help in organizing your content.

  • Backlinks

When other websites link back to your website, your ranking improves. However, link quality is also essential.

Internal links

Internal links help users find other information that they might not even think they need. It also allows crawlers to find more locations within the website.

  • External links

You can incorporate links to other websites on your web pages. Google and users want more information on the subject. When your website includes citations to other authoritative sources, you prove to them (Google and users) that you have their best interest in mind.

  • Word count

A 500 words article cannot be as comprehensive as a 2000 words article on the same topic. Search engine crawlers also know this. So, your chances of ranking better on SERPs increase marginally when your website has a bigger word count.

In the analysis, we will do a thorough check on the quality, quantity, and performance of the backlinks. Broken links discourage users from visiting your website. Optimized anchor text with relevant keywords, internal links, and link profile will help users find your website easily. When you link back to trusted and related websites, users find it easier to trust your site.

Even though SEO will focus on your overall presence on the internet, the content on your website matters the most in the end.

SEO analysis for attorneys

An analysis is important to set targets. Once you know how you are performing, you can aim for better. Key performer indicators (KPIs) help put numbers to your website's performance. You can use KPIs to analyze the website's navigational structure and link profile.

Ways to analyze the performance of internet marketing

  • The strategy

A thought-out internet marketing strategy will command better results than a website that an owner publishes without a plan in mind.

  • Tools for the taking

To obtain an explicit report on your website's SEO, you can use several free tools available on the internet. These tools tell you about the number of visitors and how they reached your website.

  • Link analysis-A must

Link analysis will tell you about the broken, non-authoritative, and authoritative links. Authoritative links are the best for your business when they are relevant. A detailed report on link analysis will give you information on what you need to rectify and what should stay.

 

Difference between On-site and off-site SEO:

On-site SEO focuses on techniques applied on your physical website. Off-site SEO consists of SEO techniques which do not happen on your website but, contributes to the traffic on your site.

 

Law firms On-site SEO

On-site SEO comprises of making the site easy to navigate, right keywords selection, and creating content that includes these keywords naturally. The areas of expertise for On-site SEO are

  • Keywords selection: Determining the keywords list is an integral part of SEO. Utilize tools like Keywords Everywhere, Google Keyword Planner, to create a list of keywords that works for your business. Intuition and a look at your competitors can also help with keyword selection.

 

  • Website structure: Optimize the structure of your website so that people find relevant information on each page.

 

  • Headings: Use headings to organize your website. The types of heading you use also have an impact on your ranking.
  • Title tags: Title tags use keywords to clarify the content on the web page.
  • Meta-description: The descriptive words written right underneath the URLs of results on SERPs are meta-descriptions. Brevity is a must here because the word limit is capped at just 160 characters. An engaging Meta-description will get the clicks, whereas a bad one will confirm a pass.
  • Content: Unique content that is useful to your potential customers is a must. The outlines for good custom content are that it should be easy to read, visually pleasing, engaging, and long.
  • Google Analytics: Google Analytics is the best tool to track your site's performance, including traffic and click-through rates. It is an essential tool that lets you track the trends on your website. This data encourages appropriate changes to your SEO strategies.
  • Sitemap: Adding a sitemap to Google search console tells Google about the site's content. Upload sitemap to other essential search engines as well. Sitemaps help search engines rank your website faster.
  • On-site security: Security is a significant issue on the internet. Hence, on-site security should not be taken lightly.
  • The loading speed of the site: Waiting is not the preferred past time of anyone. When your website does not long for a long time, people click the cross button and move to the next option. Long loading speed also lowers your website's rank on the SERPs
  • A call to action button: Whenever possible, add a call to action. Your website's aim is to fetch you, new clients. Once the potential client is on your website and takes the time to read your content, a call to action button can push them to use your services.

The significance of good custom content

The website's productivity ceases to exist if there is no great content on it. A site with bad content will not see the light of day, no matter how well you design it. To ensure that users have a great experience on your website, make sure that your content isn't incorrect, dull, or without purpose.  

Active blogging

Blog posts are the best for keeping your website relevant at all times. Blog posts on your website should hold importance in the eyes of potential clients. Every post is one more valid reason for a potential client to visit your site. Your site will have static pages with content, which will stay relevant for a long duration of time. For instance, services pages are static pages. Blog posts are more dynamic in nature, and they change with time. A blog about 'new amendments to the judiciary system' can only remain relevant for some time.

Providing specific information in your blogs encourages more people to come to your website. For this, you need to ensure that the content is relevant and high-quality. An active blog is an integral part of your SEO practice. As long as you refresh your content from time to time, potential clients will have more reasons to revisit your site. Blogs with the comment section encourage discussions and conversation.

Active blogging requires continuous blog posting. It is one of the most effective ways to direct traffic to your blog.

Here are a few questions that you need to ask yourself when you decide to blog actively

  1. Who is your audience?
  2. What brand image should ensue from the content?
  3. What visuals to include?
  4. How many times to post in a week?
  5. Who will write the content, you or guest bloggers?
  6. Should you hire an internet marketing firm for blogging?

Incorporate internal links in your blogs so that; the potential customer spends more time on your website. Internal links will help you with clients and with Googlebot's spiders. Publish the right content with the help of an effective internet marketing strategy to get the best results.

Lawyers advertising ethics and SEO content

An effective SEO campaign will maximize your law firm's visibility online and help change potential clients into loyal customers. At the most basic form, your marketing campaign should implore the targeted audience to use your service. It should never spam them with irrelevant content. Bar associations implement law firm marketing rules. Your state might not have them, but there are a few business considerations you should take as a lawyer before advertising.

Offensive, deceitful, and misleading advertisements are a big no. Mendacious means of advertising might get you what you want in the short term, but it will harm your business in the long run. Legal liability is also possible. Unfortunately, these rules and regulations have not curbed the malicious attorney marketing practices.

Disingenuous lawyer advertising

Lawyers are the people whom people trust. As a profession that demands absolute respect, advertising standards are much higher for law firms when compared to other industries. The use of prohibited language in advertisements and the absence of necessary disclaimers can tarnish the reputation of a law firm. To avoid exile from the industry, here are a few rules that you should follow:

Rule 1: At all cost, avoid false, misleading information

Rule 2: Only flaunt your expertise once you have the appropriate certification that has been approved by the state's bar.

Rule 3: Never guarantee positive results.

Who should work on the content?

Creating relevant content with factual and accurate details while keeping it interesting is a mammoth task. Pinpointing 'what people need to know' and 'what kind of information will potential clients be looking for' requires a lot of brainstorming. Only a company with SEO expertise, specially curated to law firms will be able to achieve this goal within due time. An experienced law firm SEO company will produce engaging content. The ability to convert users into real clients while being in sync with the bar association's guidelines only comes with experience.

Geography-based internet marketing strategies for law firms

Geo-modifiers are a part of technical optimization. These help your business target the correct audience, based on location. The use of Geo-modifiers will make it easier for clients (who are in close vicinity) to find you and spread your content to other potential clients.

For lawyers, the local client base means everything. People usually search for services near them. For instance, people in New York will search for a lawyer near me, a law firm in New York, or some other variation of it. When your site has a geographical tag, people searching for lawyers in your vicinity will find you.

For lawyers, the local client base means everything. People typically search for services near them. People in New York will either search for a lawyer near me, a law firm in New York or some other variation of it. When your site has a geographical tag, people searching for lawyers in their vicinity will find you.

National SEO focuses on keywords pertaining to the field. Focusing on keywords based on the events when people need lawyers like car accident lawyers, medical malpractice, and divorce attorney appeals to the national and global audience.

Use of local SEO for law firms reaps the best benefits.

A quick guide to website's navigational structure and architecture

An SEO expert needs excellent organizational skills to improve the navigability of the website. An easily navigable site is suitable for the users as well as search engines.

Elements of the website's architectural structure

  • Hierarchy: Put relevant content under an umbrella term. Use the names of the URL to show the hierarchy.
  • Site Maps: A page that enlists all the pages on the website in the hierarchy is a Site Map. It helps engines crawl your site better.
  • A simple approach: Keep your website simple. Too many clickable items will confuse the users and crawlers.
  • Cap the page levels: When your menu has subpages, after sub-pages after subpages, it defeats the purpose of the organization.
  • Mobile friendly experience: Many potential clients will search for your services on the phone. So, make a website that works just as well on the phone as it does on the desktop.

Once, you are done with on-site content and structure, move to off-site SEO

Off-site SEO for Attorneys

Off-site SEO contains techniques that we implement outside of the site to improve traffic. Off-site SEO includes back linking from reputable sources.  Authoritative sites linking back to you via social media shares, or within the web site's content for additional information benefits SEO.

These links should accompany anchor text with keywords that are relevant to your business. Also, an increase in the number of links also helps SEO.

Backlinks: Links on your and other websites that take the users to your site are called backlinks. When you have high quality and quantity backlinks, your SERPs ranking improves.

Link profile: Link profile is a list of websites that link back to you. Aim for high-authoritative sites to link back to you to improve your link profile.

Why maintain a healthy link profile?

A few reasons to focus on link profile are

  • The search engine trusts you.
  • Ensues trust in the audience.
  • Higher ranking on SERPs.
  • More authority on SERPs than competitors.
  • Use anchor text to target essential keywords.

Links that will benefit your business

As a law firm, your links should only be in reputed pages. When news sources, industry journals, and reputed websites link back to you, it is beneficial for your business. You can add internal links to your site to take people to some of the older, less popular posts.

Should I be wary of some backlinks?

Any irrelevant backlink will have the opposite effect of a reputed backlink. You should avoid spam-based backlinks and irrelevant backlinks at all costs.

A qualified SEO company will help your business acquire good backlinks while eliminating the bad ones.

 

Importance of Directory listings for my law firm SEO

Directory listings: List your business on renowned directories. People, who do not wish to go through a lot of information, use directories to find a relevant law firm. Directories garner trust and provide contact details. Moreover, list your business on Facebook, Google, and Yelp to improve SEO.

 

 

 

SEO for lawyers through social media

80% of Americans are on Social media. It is anticipated that more than 2 billion people will use social media in the coming years.

Integrating advertisement through social media gives your business a chance to build a reputation and maintain a presence in the eyes of potential clients. More engagement on your social media profiles improves SEO.

How do social media benefit my business?

  • It provides the chance to turn users into customers.
  • Constant access to new, current, and former clients.
  • It helps maintain contact and ensures trust and loyalty in customers.
  • Social media links back to your website, which improves SEO.
  • Better and more extended interaction with the audience improves your visibility on the social media site and results in SEO gains.

 

The bar association also has rules on what an attorney can post. An SEO company that specializes in internet marketing will know about these rules in detail. Use their services to manage your social media.

Sites for SEO for Attorney Social Media Campaigns

  • Facebook
  • YouTube
  • Instagram
  • LinkedIn

These are reputable social media sites with several users. An experienced Law firm SEO company will be to manage all these accounts for you. Furthermore, the SEO firm can provide additional suggestions to improve engagement.

 

To choose the best SEO Company for your Law firm, here is what you need to consider.

Ethics are an important part of your business, and the company you hire for SEO practices should show your ethics. Misrepresentation can harm your reputation tremendously.

Two types of SEO practices: White hat agencies and black hat agencies.

White hat practice:

·     Long term strategies with real human traffic.

·     Users find relevant content and long term gains.

 

Black hat practices

·     Uses cheap tricks that utilize the working of search engines.

·     Harmful in the long run and drives away potential customers.

 

 

White hat and black hat practices include:

White hat practices:

·     Semantic Mark-Up

·     Effective and relevant keywords use

·     Quality inbound links

·     Relevant Title and Meta tags

 

Black hat services include:

·     Use of unrelated keywords

·     Keywords stuffing and stacking

·     Tiny text and hidden links and texts

·     Cloaking

·     Mirror sites

·     Spam blogs

·     Page swapping

·     Gateway pages

 

Being in compliance with your state's guidelines is important. Many of them prohibit the use of black hat practices. Refer to the guidelines for details on allowed SEO practices.

 

Hiring the wrong company for SEO work can be dangerous, especially for lawyers, but a white hat SEO company can improve your numbers immensely over time.

How to track Law Company’s growth via internet marketing?

It is crucial to measure the effects of internet marketing campaigns. There are a variety of questions that you can answer via tracking SEO reports throughout the year.

  • Is there an increase in the profitability of the company
  • How are your new customers coming across your business?
  • What about the client growth rate and how many of them are leads from the internet?
  • SEO for long-run or short-run?
  • Are you updating SEO strategies to improve growth?
  • Change in your website's SERPs ranking?
  • What about reviewing SEO techniques to discern the working links from the ones that are not working?

To track the success of SEO techniques, set goals beforehand, and see how you are advancing towards these results.

What Return on Investment (ROI) should I expect?

ROI is calculated in percentage and is equal to (Net profit/total investment). Keeping your expectations realistic is very important when you calculate ROI for any aspect of your business, including, SEO. The ROI in SEO is much layered in nature. ROI in SEO will include:

  • Change in the refinement of the site's health, functionality, and structure.
  • Increase in interactive user experience.
  • Enhanced presence on social media
  • Growth of traffic to your site
  • Change in rankings on SERPs.

Campaign length for Law firm SEO

SEO, much like environment conservation, is a continual process. It doesn't stop until you want the website to cease.

Though, you can ask how long it will take to see substantial results via SEO.

This too does not have one answer but, there are a few factors that you should consider

  • Website's running time

The run time of the site has a positive correlation with a presence online. When you continually fill your website with relevant information via blogs and other updated content, Google starts to recognize you. Reaching that top position takes its sweet time.

  • Website's conditions

Broken links and lack of a design that enables straightforward navigability is off-putting for Google. Google will not send potential clients to your site if these conditions persist.

  • What if there is an already established SEO campaign?

When you start anything from scratch, it takes longer. If the base is already set, then the waiting period will decrease.

 

  • Content's amount

When your website has updated, relevant content, it proves its value to search engines. The more relevant content you have, the better.

 

Is there any other way to track SEO returns?

Google's algorithm is proprietary, but it does provide tools to assist the calculation of SEO growth. SEO analytical tools include Google Analytics, Google Webmaster, and more. You can use these tools for:

  • Phone tracking: It allows you to know the campaigns and keywords that get you the calls. For this, you need to keep your NAP (Name, Address, and phone number) consistent.
  • Form tracking: Tools that locate the position of the form filler are available. Not only will you have the form delivered to you immediately but also, have an estimate of the location of the clients.
  • Traffic reports: A good traffic report will tell you about the trending keywords, which ones are leading to your business and the kind of traffic coming your way.
  • Ranking reports: A keyword ranking report helps in managing the focus keywords for your website. It also, tells you the keyword's rank in the search engine.

 

An amalgamation of expertise, tenacity, and strategies will result in the top rankings for your law firm website. If just creating a website would have been enough, nobody will invest in SEO. Take your business to the new heights using the latest SEO strategies now.

 

SEO for Attorneys: Digital marketing solution that works

Search Engine Optimization's end goal is to steer the relevant traffic in your direction, generate users, convert them into leads, and finally make a contribution to your revenue. The techniques mentioned above are implemented while keeping this end goal in mind, and every SEO decision is affected by this end goal.

 

Patience is a virtue that will be put to the test when you invest time, money, and work into SEO. It is a long-term process, and nothing can change that. Our skilled team will work with professionalism to provide you and your law firm with long-lasting results that improve your business's viability.

 

Some FAQs

Should I get a .law or .lawyer domain?

The search engine will crawl any top-level Domain so you can get one of these types of domain. However, there are a few SEO plug-INS that do not support any domain other than .com.

My site is ranking well, can I stop SEO now?

No. SEO is a continuous process, and Google changes its algorithm regularly. SEO experts have to keep in touch with the latest updates from Google, and so does your website. Keeping the higher rankings on SERPs and improving traffic requires constant vigilance.

 

 

 

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