As a law firm, how can you get ahead? These days, so many law firms and private legal practices advertise heavily online, and so SEO strategies are becoming increasingly important for lawyers.
With recent changes to Google’s management of search engine rankings, having multiple websites won’t be enough to draw visitors to your site. New search engine algorithms take into account related terminology, and search for repeating patterns, in a specific attempt to block out Personal Blog Networks. PBNs are networked blog sites, usually with a few unique posts for good measure, all of them linking back to the same central location. They’re designed to create a false impression of niche authority for that location – generally a service provider. The ongoing crackdown on PBNs does create a problem for legitimate services employing similar tactics.
The following SEO strategies will help create some top-notch search engine optimization for attorneys hoping to get a leg up on the competition… an appropriate metaphor, since lawyer SEO (and SEO in general) is still all about legwork. It’s just a matter of knowing where to apply your time and energy, in order to achieve the best possible results.
1. Create and Deliver Quality Content for Your Clients
Doing the right thing, by way of search engine optimization, is all about knowing where to apply your resources… and being able to spot approaching trends. One of the most effective SEO strategies today is user-generated content, which isn’t going to be changing any time soon. User-generated content scores highly with site ranking algorithms – so highly, in fact, that some social media platforms (the latest source for big-time SEO) have integrated systems which rate a given post by its relative value.
Maintain a Blog
Blogs are good. In fact, they’re better than good; they’re honestly written gold. A blog allows you to constantly provide new and interesting information to prospective clients. Write articles that specialize in your field, with headlines like “How To Protect Yourself Against Collection Agencies.” It’s a great way to provide content which your clients perceive as being valuable, which lends a sense of appreciation and “time well spent” to their visiting your website.
Blogs are also interactive; you can leave blogs open to comments, interact with your visitors by answering questions they post in response to your blogs, and allow guest bloggers to make the odd post here and there. The more you help your clients, the more they perceive you to be trustworthy.
Promote Your Practice on Social Media
Social media marketing is the current wave in SEO enhancement. It’s one of the most profound and active types of user-generated content marketing in existence. Create a page for your firm with all of the major social media providers – including Twitter, Facebook, Google+, and Pinterest. Don’t leave any stone un-turned, because your next client may need the services of a social media manager to keep track of it all. Even if that isn’t an option for you presently, what you can do on your own will be worth the time.
Post regular updates, post links to each of your blogs on all of your social media accounts, add relevant images and video content, and do your best to keep up with followers’ comments. Track down other attorneys and law firms in your area, and follow them; invite them to do likewise for you. It may be counter-intuitive, but this will actually work out to benefit both parties through the additional brand exposure.
2. Localize SEO for your Law Firm
Generally speaking, a law firm services a relatively contained area. Most law firms work within a portion of a particular state. This can actually work to a law firm’s advantage when it comes to local SEO strategies. Local SEO for lawyers is important, because people tend to do a great deal of research online when it comes to choosing an attorney. They will look for a reputable local attorney to solicit a free quote or a consultation from, and they may gather several of those – while performing additional research – before choosing to actually have a sit-down meeting. By taking advantage of local SEO boosters, an attorney can give his online presence a key advantage – particularly within the ever-expanding market of mobile internet connectivity.
Register with Google
Take a few minutes, and register your law firm or private practice’s website with Google. There are actually a couple of steps here: first, you need to create a Google+ page for your business, if you don’t have one already. Next, you need to verify your business; this usually involves a postcard, and is not an instant process. Some businesses can be verified by phone; for others, if they have already verified their business’ website with Google Webmaster Tools, verification may be instant.
Register with Local Directories
Networks of local business directories, such as those found in this list on HubSpot, are like the filing cabinets of the internet. Imagine walking into an office with one thousand files sitting in separate folders on a desk, and being told that you need to sort them all into alphabetical order.
Now, imagine walking into that same office, only to find that the files have already been sorted within the first letter of each of their names. It only remains to put the twenty-six separate piles of folders in order.
This is the sort of convenience that local directories provide to major search engines like Google. This means that if your practice is registered with a business directory servicing your local area, you’re going to rank higher in Google searches for legal services from within that area. The more directories with which your practice is registered, the higher your website will rank in organic search results… and in local results, such as those provided by the Google Map Pack.
Additionally, listing accurate information for your business with multiple local directories can help Google avoid some common mistakes and inconsistencies resulting from sparse, incomplete, or outdated information.
If you’re in need of an optimized SEO package, stop by our website today for a free quote on any of our services – or put your website to the test with our free SEO analysis.