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LAW FIRM SEO TIP
You've decided that a given keyword will bring in good leads if you can rank. Before you create content to optimize for that keyword, explore what the content looks like that already ranks for your keyword. Don't swim upstream by creating a service page when every page that ranks is a blog post or article.
"Divorce lawyer Chicago" is a high competition keyword that is hard to rank for. However, "low cost divorce lawyer chicago" or "divorce lawyer chicago free consultation" are keywords variants that are have much lower competition but can still bring in relevant leads. They're easier to rank for and therefore easier to achieve search engine rankings.
"Publish 100 new blog posts" is a poor goal because it's an output, but it's not an outcome. "Generate 100 qualified leads per month" is a great goal because it's an outcome. Start by defining what outcome you want to achieve, and then go about determining what sort of output will be required to get there.
Anyone who knows about SEO knows that "unique" content is crucial. You can make your law firm's website content more unique by incorporating content that is actually unique to your law firm; your client testimonials and your case results.
Do you already rank and get traffic for your most important practice areas? Consider creating a second website to cover the same topics but in a unique way. Check out FightVirginiaRecklessDriving.com for an example of an attorney using a microsite to take up more search result real estate for the same group of keywords.
Even though Google will never admit it, time and time again we have seen that having your target keyword be explicitly included in your URLs correlates positively with better rankings. Keep your URLs short and sweet, but be sure to include your target keywords. In most cases, your URL slug should exactly match your primary keyword.
Do you get asked the same question over and over again by your clients and potential clients? Write blog posts answering those questions. In fact, you have probably answered them a dozen times in emails. Go back through your emails and use that content on your website.
Identify what pages on your website perform the best - both in terms of traffic/rankings AND in terms of actually generating new clients - and plan to update that content regularly. This will help you achieve and maintain high rankings by showing Google and users that you care about keeping your best content as fresh and relevant as possible.
An SEO audit can be a valuable service. However, if your website is brand new, or if it's tiny (just a handful of pages) you do not need an SEO audit. What you need is an SEO strategy or roadmap which lays out what SEO success looks like for your firm, and how to get there.
A great way to get high-impact links is to find news stories or other sorts of articles online where you or your law firm is mentioned by there is no link back to your site. These are called "unlinked brand mentions". Reach out to these folks and ask that they add a link to a relevant page of your website!
One way to make your pages stand out in search results - and potentially increase click-through rates - is to use special characters. For a huge selection of special characters, open up a new Google Doc, click Insert, and then Special Characters. Then browse the characters to find interesting options. Copy and paste the character you choose directly into your title tag element. For instance, the title tag of this page is "124 Law Firm SEO Tips ⨳ Juris Digital". You can see that we've used a special character as a separator between the title and our brand name.
All the leads in the world won't do you any good if you don't have a solid process for following up with them and signing them up as clients. Get your intake system established before you make an investment in law firm SEO.
Allow potential new clients to message you directly from Google search by enabling the messaging feature in your Google business profile.
As you produce informational content that addresses legal topics related to your practice, consider shooting quick videos to supplement the text content. This is a great way to reach a wider audience with your web content and to build trust by showing people who you are, how you speak, and that you know what you're talking about.
Attorneys have valuable knowledge that others could benefit from. Start a Meetup group on a topic that you are passionate about and hold at least one event every month. Then, follow this guide to make sure that those efforts turn into links for your website.
Google oftent displays images next to mobile search results. You can give yourslef the best chance at getting images in search results by adding a square image - which is unique and relevant - near the top of your content.
Before you consider opening new offices in new markets, achieve ranking dominance of your primary market first. This way you'll be making those additional investments from a place where you are already generating consistent new leads.
By creating a GoFundMe for a worthy cause, you will get a nice backlink from gofundme.com and you also might get news coverage as well. Check out this example from one of our clients.
By taking your website content and putting it into different formats (graphics, PDFs, slide decks, etc.) you can use these assets to get links from 3rd party sites.
Chances are, there are websites that already rank for your target keywords that sell listings/ads which will link back to your site and help you rank better for those keywords. Additionally, these listings may generate direct business for your firm.
Did you know that Google allows you to create Google Business Profile listings for individual attorneys at your firm? These are called Practitioner listings, and when used strategically they can help you gain more local visibility for a wider array of practice areas. Learn more here
Do research to find worthy causes in your city or state that align with your own values and mission. Donate to them in exchange for a logo and link from their website to yours.
Do you handle non-compete litigation? Create a noncompete template and publish it on your website. This will help you be found by folks who could have legal needs around your area of practice.
Do you meet with clients and potential new clients in-person at your office? Be sure to select "onsite appointments" as an attribute in your Google business profile.
Do you offer virtual appointments to clients and potential clients? Be sure to select "online appointments" as an attribute in your Google business profile.
Don't be blind to what specific pages on your site generate the most positive outcomes. Know what pages are the most impactful and focus on getting everything you can from them
Don't create your own citations. It's mind-numbing. Use one of the many quality services that exist for creating listings on the most important local business directory websites.
Don't feel like you can only set one category. If there are multiple categories that are relevant to the services offered by your law firm, select them all.
Don't forget to get listed on Bing and Yahoo local as well! Google is most of the ballgame, but it's not the whole thing. It's worth making sure that your law firm's local SEO efforts extend to the other prominent search engines as well.
Don't get me started on how powerful client success stories are. A well-done client success story proves to your potential best clients that you have the chops to help them with their issues. Learn more here.
Don't publish content from anonymous authors. Sign your name (or some else's name) to your content. A short bio and a headshot are bonuses.
Even if it often seems like slow websites rank just fine in Google, optimizing your site to load as fast as possible is still time well spent. A fast-loading website delights the people who visit, and delighted users tend to become clients.
Even if more reviews do not help you rank higher (which is a topic of debate) the importance of getting regular, positive reviews cannot be overstated. Getting client reviews should be an ongoing part of your law firm's SEO and marketing plan. Have a process in place to continually solicit reviews from happy clients.
FAQPage Schema is a great way to set your pages apart in search results and deliver answers to your users as quickly as possible. Check out this guide to learn how we optimize FAQPage schema at Juris Digital.
For example, many states publish vehicle crash data via online databases. Personal injury lawyers can use this data to create original research content that relates to their areas of practice. For example, use data to answer the question "what are the most dangerous roads in (your city)"
For your website content to perform - rank in search and ultimately produce leads - it needs to be accurate and compelling. This simply cannot be achieved by a general content writer. Make sure the people writing your content have specialized knowledge in your areas of practice.
Forum spam has a long history with SEOs. For years, spammy link builders nuked forums in every corner of the web with spam accounts and spun comments. But there is a way to leverage forums for links that add real value. In fact, we have outlined our process for doing so here.
Getting links to your website from local news publications is a great way to build your site authority. Use LinkedIn and other social networks to form connections with local reporters, and offer to be their go-to legal commentator.
Google maps have a Q&A feature. Think of this as an FAQ page for your law firm that lives right on Google's first page. Ask and answer common questions about your law firm's services and areas of practice.
Google often uses your Heading 1 tags as the title it displays in search results. For this reason - and because it's a prime place to include your main keywords - you ought to pay attention to making your H1 tags as relevant and compelling as possible.
Google Search Console is a free tool from Google that provides a ton of useful data about your website's performance, and reports for helping you make strategic changes to better optimize your website.
Google shows local map-pack results for a huge proportion of lawyer-related keywords. The more offices you have across your markets, the more search visibility you will gain.
Google the names of the individual lawyers in the firm and make sure that the first page of Google looks good. If there are low-quality images, bad reviews, bad news stories, or anything else that you don't want to be associated with the attorneys at your firm, take action to make improvements.
Google uses this data to show folks how long you have been in business right in search results. Make sure to add your law firm's open date in your Google business profile.
Google your law firm's name and see what page 1 of the search results looks like. Are there sites with positive reviews showing up? Does your law firm website rank first? Is there a Google business knowledge graph on the right-hand side? If any of these elements are sub-optimal, take action to make your firm look better.
Hemmingway is a desktop application that gives you feedback on the readability of your content and gives advice for making improvements. For just 20 bucks this is a hugely valuable tool that will help you differentiate your website content.
Use this free tool from Google to make sure that your various forms of Schema markup validate properly: https://developers.google.com/search/docs/advanced/structured-data
We could say more about it but you might as well just check out this post from Sterling Sky.
It's tempting to let your prospective clients contact you using every method available. However, this can actually lead to a bad experience if you aren't well equipped to offer a given form of communication. For example, if you don't have someone who can answer your phones, don't prompt people to call you.
If Google does not crawl and index the 3rd party websites where you have business listings, you won't get any SEO benefit from them. Use the site command operator to check if your primary local citations are indexed in Google.
If you are paying just a few bucks a month for website hosting, your website is probably slower and less secure than it needs to be. Don't go with the cheapest possible web hosting option. Learn more here.
If you conduct some competitive research you'll soon find that the sheer volume of links rarely correlates with high rankings. It's much more important that the backlinks you have be of high quality than that you acquire massive amounts of links.
In general, you want your GMB listing to be as complete as possible and this means selecting any relevant Attributes that apply to your law firm and your office.
In reality, your "website" isn't what generates traffic from SEO. Rather, specific pages on your website generate traffic when they rank for keywords that people search. When analyzing the performance of your website be sure to focus on what your top traffic-generating landing pages are.
In some markets in the US people are more inclined to search for a lawyer by the name of the county rather than by the name of the town or city. You can take advantage of this by creating pages that are optimized for the names of the counties you serve.
In your Google Business profile, you can add custom services. Use this area to get super granular with the specific types of cases you handle. These services can help you rank for specialized areas of practice.
Internal linking is important for SEO, and the anchor text you use in those links is also important. Take the time to use keyword-optimized anchor text in your internal linking.
Internal linking really is impactful. Make sure that both users and Google know exactly what your most important pages are by linking to them often and from other important pages. Use keyword-rich anchor text, and link from pages on relevant topics.
It might sound obvious but make sure your law firm is properly categorized in Google. You can't rank for relevant search terms if you aren't categorized as a law firm that handles those specific types of cases. Example: Personal Injury Attorney
It's 2022 and honestly, this shouldn't be something that needs to be said, but it is. You don't need a separate website for mobile devices. You need a website that responds to whatever the viewport size is. That's how the name "responsive" came about.
It's a common misconception that your homepage should always be optimized for your highest competiton, most important keyword. This isn't always the case. Search that keyword in Google and see whether it's mostly homepages that are ranking. If not, think again about your strategy.
It's impossible (and infuriating) to understand where your site ranks at any given moment for any given keyword. The nature of personalized search results is such that ranking and positioning are in constant flux. So rather than focusing on rankings, focus on traffic. If an important page on your site had 30 hits last month, and 100 this month, your rankings, on average, went up. That's really all you need to know.
LegalService schema can help boost your local search rankings by telling Google exactly what type of business you are and where you are located. Use our free tool to add LegalService schema to your website.
Many law firms just want to know how to get rid of negative reviews, but this is small thinking. When you get a negative review, use it as an opportunity to listen to your clients and improve your services. There is so much more to gain by listening to your client's feedback than by trying to suppress it.
Most lawyers can only take cases in specific states, and sometimes specific cities. Give yourself the best chance at ranking high AND bringing in only qualified leads by localizing your informational content. Learn more here
Near me is a great keyword variant to use in your content because people do tend to want a lawyer who is near them, and so it's common for people to add the "near me" modified to common lawyer searches.
No-code design tools like Canva make it easy for non-designers to create custom graphics that don't look half bad. Taking that little extra time to customize graphics on your site is essential for high-performing search content.
Often people who search the same keywords are actually looking for different information. Identify opportunities to rank in multiple positions by addressing multiple user intents, but the same keyword.
One of the best ways to trash your law firm's SEO is to change the URL of important pages and then fail to redirect the old URL to the new one. It's generally fine to change your URLs (especially when you are making them more optimal) but always be sure to redirect the old to the new.
One way to enhance the visibility of your Google listing is to knock out spammy competitors. If you know that law firms that are outranking you in Google maps are not legitimate, report them as spam and see if Google will take action to remove them.
Over the years we have had a handful of clients who sabotage their own SEO success because they were so reluctant to publish content or approve a design. Don't let your perfectionism be the enemy of your progress. Publish when it's ready, and you can always perfect over time.
Page titles remain among the most critical on-page SEO elements (despite recent changes by Google to how they treat titles). Page titles are worth spending time on. Make them unique from your competition, compelling, and relevant to what the searcher is looking for.
People facing a legal claim often search questions related to what their case settlement might be worth. For example, someone who is considering suing for wrongful termination in California might search "California wrongful termination settlements". Create the content on these topics to get in front of these folks.
People frequently search "best" or "top" along with their search for a lawyer. Use these words in your content (ethically) to give yourself a chance at ranking for keywords with these variants.
People need to know what it will cost to hire you. Yet most law firms would never give this information out on their website. Be radically transparent with your pricing and your potential new clients will be drawn to you.
People use Apple Maps to find businesses. Make sure your firm is listed on Apple Maps. Generally, if you have a Yelp listing, you have an Apple Maps listing, but it's worth double-checking. You can also verify and manage your Apply Maps listing here: https://register.apple.com/placesonmaps/.
Putting a "table of contents" in your informational content is a great way to improve usability and achieve rich results in Google that can have a positive impact on clicks.
Rather than trying to come up with compelling things to say about your law firm in your sales copy, use your own client's words instead. Check out this example: SilvaInjuryLaw.com.
Rather than using generic calls to action that read the same on all pages, customize your calls to action based on the topics of individual pages. For example, if you have a blog post about the statute of limitations for a given civil action, your call to action should include language like "don't let the clock run out on your case".
Sad but true, this is the number one way to improve your Google maps rankings. Proceed with caution as this tactic can bring attention to your listing and cause both temporary and permanent listing suspensions. However, generally, we have seen that the rewards far outweigh the risks.
Search something related to your practice area and then have a look at Google's "people also ask" results. This will help you build out a large inventory of content topics that you know people are asking about.
Show your face. Talk about yourself. Be human. This will differentiate you from your competition and form connections with your potential new clients before you ever speak to them.
Slow typer? Utilize dictation tools to speed up your content creation process. Google Docs actually has a dictation feature built-in. You can also use the dictation feature on your phone.
Spend some time on your bio. People do research you when they are considering hiring you, and a compelling bio page can be the difference between signing up that new client or seeing them go to one of your competitors.
Stop thinking of content in the aggregate. A single piece of content can generate literally millions of dollars for your law firm. Identify the topics and keywords that are most valuable to your firm and invest in making those individual pieces of content as compelling as they can possibly be.
Studies show that consumers are willing to overlook negative reviews if the business responds adequately. Always respond to your Google reviews - negative and positive. This show prospective clients that you are engaged, you care, and that you are open for business.
The whole goal of SEO is to get people to your law firm's website. When they get there it's essential that the content you present be easily comprehensible. Text readability is a crucial element of effective law firm SEO.
There are a ton of niche practice/service areas for which competiton is much lower. You can hedge your law firm SEO investment by optimizing for keywords related to less competitive service areas, including more transactional services like contract reviews and hourly consulting.
There are few better ways to earn the trust and goodwill of your potential clients - before you ever meet them - than by offering them something for free that helps them solve a problem or get an answer to a question. Think calculators, form templates. etc.
There is a misconception that blog posts are somehow a less good "home" for important content. It's fine to house important content on your law firm's blog, so long as you have a solid plan for linking to your most important posts prominently from relevant content on your site. Remember, internal linking is what matters in terms of showing Google what pages are most important, not what type of page template you use.
There is no data showing that adding Google Posts to your listing directly benefits rankings, however, this utilizing this feature is a great way to show your prospective clients that you are active, and open for business.
There are a ton of websites out there that allow you to create profiles for yourself individually or for your law firm. These sites normally allow you to add links to your website and your social profiles. While these links can be done in a spammy way if you focus on creating high-quality profiles – with custom graphics and unique content – they can add real value to your website and your overall online reputation.
These concepts are essential to any effective SEO-centered content marketing strategy. Learn more here.
This is a free tool from Bing that provides you with lots of good SEO-related data on your website's performance. It's also often overlooked because, well, it's Bing.
This is a great trick to spot-check your new content to make sure it's in Google's index. Open Google and type site:yourwebsite.com/page-you-are-checking/. This will tell you whether or not Google has indexed your page.
This is a low-hanging fruit item that can make a big impact on your site's performance. Identify old links – both from your site and from external sites – that no longer display content and redirect those URLs to pages that do have content.
This is a simple way to look sharper than your competitors. Make sure your logo is as crisp as possible by using an SVG file format rather than a compressed jpg or png.
This isn't to say that you shouldn't carefully consider what TLD to use when you are creating a new website for your law firm. However, SEO should not be a consideration in this decision as the TLD you use will not impact search rankings in a direct way.
This lawyer created a Super Bowl ad that includes quotes from the bible, a flaming graveyard, and heavy metal, and also got links from dozens from online publications like Time.com and People.com.
This may seem old-school, but using your primary keywords in your image file name and alt text has a real, measurable impact on rankings. Always optimize your website's images by adding your target keywords.
This should really be a part of a larger online networking strategy rather than just a way to earn one-off links. At any rate, engaging with other legal bloggers by commenting on their work is a great way to build links quickly – by dropping your website or blog URL in the appropriate field – and to generate higher quality links over time.
Use Fiverr to create short whiteboard videos to act as a supplement to your important pages. Check out this example.
Use this tool -- https://ga-dev-tools.web.app/campaign-url-builder/ -- to create tracking URLs so that you can see exactly how much traffic is being generated by specific online sources, such as your Google Business listing.
We see that people often search for law firms that offer free consultations. Use this modifier in your content to scoop up traffic from these types of searches.
When a potential client finds your law firm online, what will their impression of you be, and how will you stand out in their mind? It's crucial that you differentiate your firm through the words you use, the design you deploy, then questions you answer, and how you make people feel when they "meet" you online.
When creating content meant to rank for keywords containing "best" try to actually compare yourself with your competitors to demonstrate why you think you are the best option.
When you are asking people to do you a favor - like leaving a Google review - make it easy for them. Use this free tool to generate a link that will direct folks directly to where they can leave you a review.
When you search a keyword like "best dui lawyer las vegas" you'll find that most of the pages that rank take the same approach with their content. So, take a unique approach. Rather than telling people about why you are the best, consider waxing philosophical about how "best" is subjective and how the best lawyer for person A might be a terrible lawyer for person B.
WordPress is the most popular content management system on the web, and a huge percentage of law firm website use WordPress. We aren't saying it's the best option in every case, but it usually is (...for now).
Work your personal network and arrange to contribute content to websites operated by folks that you know. This is a great way to increase your own exposure and to get valuable links to your site.
Writing on a subject is one of the best ways to learn that subject. By having your legal staff and paralegals write informational content for your website, you not only benefit from the content from an SEO / marketing standpoint, but you also give your staff the opportunity to clarify their thinking about subjects that matter to your law firm's clients.
You are a successful alumnus, The odds are that your law school would love to publish an article from you on their website or blog wherein you give advice to graduating students, or simply reflect on how your education prepared you to develop your successful law practice. Reach out to your law school and figure out how you can do something valuable for them.
You can add animated graphics to your Products on your Google business listing. Here's a complete guide to accomplish this.
You know the usual suspects here - Justia, FindLaw, lawyer.com, etc. Links from these sites likely won't be enough on their own to help you rank for your most important keywords, but they can still help move the needle toward getting there.
Young lawyers and law students are all over the web. Find them and offer to help them with anything you can. These are the current and future publishers in your niche; make friends with them and links will follow.
Your Google profile image will often be the first impression that your firm makes online. Take the time to create a custom graphic that makes you look good.
Your outbox is a goldmine of unique and informative content centered on your legal practice areas. Mine your emails for content that you can repurpose on your website for SEO.
Your practice area plus your location (eg. divorce lawyer in Chicago) is not the only type of keyword that will bring in new clients. And, those keywords are always going to have the most competition. Publish content that answers your client's questions (eg. how long does a divorce take in Chicago?). This type of content helps earn trust and positions you in front of people who are potential clients.
Your results from SEO will suffer if you treat your SEO provider purely as a vendor. Instead, invite your SEO team into your business. Collaborate with them. Answer their questions thoughtfully, Inform their efforts with your unique insight. Be partners and your results will improve.
Different people prefer to communicate in different ways. Figure out how your clients prefer to communicate and offer them those options through your website. This generally means email, texting, phone calls, video calls, and good old fashion in-person meet-ups.
Take time to understand what you bring to the table that other firms do not. This doesn't mean that you have to prove that you are the best lawyer of all time. Simply that your law firm offers something uniquely beneficial to its clients.
We love this tool because it allows you to quickly add internal links to your important content. It gives suggestions for adding internal links and it makes adding those links easy - just a click rather than having to make the edits manually.
Rank Math is quickly becoming our preferred WordPress SEO plugin. It's got great features, great support, and the pricing is reasonable.
With the December 2021 so-called vicinity update, Google is using proximity-to-the-searcher as an even more significant local ranking factor. Law firms can gain an advantage in local SEO by investing in office space that is in close physical proximity to their potential clients.