Statistics don’t lie: Google’s local search results can drive high ROI as potential clients already scouring the internet for legal services find your firm front and center. Once you establish a prominent ranking for essential keywords, you’ll notice a direct correlation with an increase in qualified leads and, subsequently, more signed cases.
The goal of local SEO for lawyers is to be ranked among the top search results for critical keywords. To start earning organic search traffic to your website and signing more cases, knowing what does and doesn’t work in local SEO for personal injury law firms is essential.
If you’re all set to delve deep into the sea of SEO, this article is your indispensable guide to mastering local SEO for personal injury law firms. So now, without further ado, let’s get started!
Why Is Local SEO Important?
Wondering if you really need local SEO for personal injury? Consider this: 97% of consumers search online to find a local business, and a recent study from LocaliQ tells us that 46% of Google searches are local. That’s right: Nearly half of all Google’s 8.5 billion daily searches (99,000 per second) are local. That’s a lot of traffic!
With such a high proportion of online searches targeting local businesses, having your law firm appear in the top results is crucial to connect with potential clients searching for legal representation.
For personal injury law firms, local SEO offers the opportunity to:
- Attract more clients in your area;
- Build awareness for your law firm’s services and, consequently, credibility;
- Increase web traffic and conversions, leading to long-term success for your business; and
- Outperform your competitors by ranking higher in search results for relevant keywords.
Now that we’ve covered why local SEO is essential, let’s dive into what local SEO is.
What Is Local SEO?
SEO stands for search engine optimization. This is the practice of publishing website content with the goal of ranking at or near the top of online search results for certain search terms, words, or phrases. For example, if you Google “personal injury law firm” right now, your search results will contain pages that have all been optimized to rank for that phrase.
Local SEO takes this concept a step further to help you gain website visitors (and potential clients) in your area. This essential strategy is for businesses that want to be more discoverable in local search results on platforms like Google. Local SEO means optimizing your law firm’s online presence to attract more business from relevant local searches, such as “personal injury law firm in California.” It focuses on increasing your law firm’s visibility in search results on Google and other search engines, specifically targeting searches made by individuals looking for law firms in a particular area.
For personal injury lawyer SEO, this means optimizing your website, content, and online strategy to connect with potential clients in your geographical area.
Google Maps Local 3-Pack: The Most Important Part of Local SEO
The Google Maps Local 3-Pack is a feature in Google’s search results that displays the top three local businesses relevant to a local search. Typically, this block of three listings appears just below the ads but above the other organic search results when users run a search with local intent, such as “personal injury lawyer near me.”
The Local 3-Pack feature includes critical information about each business, including name, address, phone number, business hours, reviews, photos, and a link to their website. Additionally, it shows the businesses’ locations on a map, helping the user visualize the physical proximity of these businesses relative to their location or searched area.
Because local search results are heavily influenced by the location of the user, the specific businesses that appear in the Local 3-Pack can vary greatly depending on where the search is made from.
Ranking in the Local 3-Pack provides businesses with a high visibility area on the first page of search results, potentially driving more website traffic, leads, and customers. For this reason, it’s an extremely valued position for businesses focusing on local SEO, especially for service-based businesses such as law firms.
Why Ranking in the Google Maps Local 3-Pack Works for Personal Injury Attorneys
Ranking in the Google Maps Local 3-Pack is extremely valuable for personal injury law firms for a few reasons.
First, the Local 3-Pack appears at the top of the Google search results page before the organic results, making it one of the first things potential clients see in their search journey. This premier positioning significantly boosts visibility and likeability for law firms listed in the pack, possibly promoting a high click-through rate.
Second, the Local 3-Pack is based on the searcher’s location—a highly weighted ranking factor. As a result, personal injury law firms listed in the 3-Pack are more likely to be in close proximity to the searcher’s location, increasing relevance and potential for local clients to engage with such firms.
Finally, appearing in Google’s Local 3-Pack can greatly increase the quality of leads and cases signed for personal injury law firms. Leads from this part of the Google SERP are highly relevant and typically arrive warm. As you can imagine, local SEO practices that optimize rankings in the Local 3-Pack provide an extremely high return on investment for personal injury law firms!
How to Rank in the Google Maps Local 3-Pack
Here are key steps your law firm can take to qualify for Google’s 3-Pack:
- Create and verify your Google Business profile. Your journey to the 3-Pack starts with claiming your Google My Business Profile. Once this is done, ensure all the information provided is accurate and complete.
- Optimize your Google Business profile. Apart from basic information, include details that make your firm stand out. Responding to reviews and uploading photos of your firm can also contribute significantly to your local SEO performance.
- Add local business schema markup to your website. The inclusion of your firm’s name, address, and phone number (NAP) encapsulated in schema language is an important way to signal your relevance and prominence to search engines.
- Ensure your website is mobile-friendly. Given the increasing number of mobile users, having a responsive website is crucial to boosting user experience and increasing your chances of appearing in the Google 3-Pack.
- Build local citations. Citations, consisting of your NAP and, in some cases, your website URL, can enhance your firm’s online presence. However, consistency in the information provided across different platforms is vital to avoid confusion.
- Get more reviews for your Google Business profile. Reviews can considerably impact your firm’s rank in Google’s 3-Pack. Prompting satisfied clients to review your firm can boost your visibility.
Keep in mind that ranking highly in the 3-Pack is not a set-it-and-forget-it tactic! Achieving and maintaining this ranking requires a consistent and strategic approach to local SEO designed to prove your business’s local value to Google’s algorithm.
More Successful SEO Strategies for Personal Injury Law Firms
While the Google Maps Local 3-Pack is the most valuable real estate in a Google SERP for a personal injury attorney, it’s not the end-all, be-all solution to improving your search engine rank and boosting the quality of digital leads you receive. Knowing everything that works is essential to get the most out of your personal-injury-related SEO efforts. The following strategies have proven effective in increasing a law firm’s local SEO presence and driving more website traffic.
1. Create High-Quality, Educational Content
Creating engaging and informative content is crucial in establishing your personal injury law firm’s authority and driving organic traffic to your website. Focus on the following:
- Write blog posts and articles about personal injury topics relevant to your audience;
- Use local keywords in your content;
- Share your content on social media platforms and your law firm’s website; and
- Encourage backlinks from reputable websites by creating valuable, shareable content.
Remember, the more valuable the content that you share is to potential clients, the more they will be likely to trust your law firm.
2. Ensure Consistency Across All Directories and Citations
There are a lot of places online where your firm could be listed. From affiliate and partner sites to Apple Map data and Foursquare, you need to make sure your information is always accurate, up-to-date, and consistent across the web. Check suite numbers, hours of operation, and all other fine details to verify that there are no discrepancies, misspellings, or other issues.
If Google can’t be sure which information about your business is correct, it may not show your firm at all in search results.
3. Perform Regular Local SEO Audits
Local SEO should be an ongoing part of your firm’s marketing practices. For one, Google’s ranking algorithms are updated regularly. That means you need to stay in the know about what’s changed so you can adjust your content and strategy accordingly. Second, you need to keep up with any aspects of your site that are underperforming or need to be tweaked.
Here are a few SEO audits that you can conduct:
- Competitor analysis—determine what kind of tactics your competitors are doing that are and are not working;
- Google Business audit—analyze your Google Business profile and make any necessary updates periodically;
- Google Search Console audit—make sure there are no issues on your site that might hinder Google crawlers or indexing;
- On-page SEO audit—check your content and make sure all titles, meta-descriptions, body copy, links, etc., are well-optimized; and
- Citation audit—regularly check any online directories and citations where your firm is listed to make sure all information is accurate.
Curious about the power of content audits? In a recent SEMrush survey, an impressive 53% of business leader respondents said performing regular content audits resulted in higher engagement, while another 49% said the practice led to more website traffic.
Pro tip: Use tools such as AHREFs, SurferSEO, or Clearscope to research keywords and optimize content much more easily.
What Doesn’t Work for Personal Injury Lawyer SEO
Not every approach is suitable for developing a robust local SEO strategy. Here are some practices to avoid when working on your personal injury lawyer SEO.
1. Keyword Stuffing
Overusing keywords is an outdated, ineffective SEO strategy. Rather than cramming your content with your primary keyword, focus on creating high-quality content with a natural and well-balanced use of keywords.
2. Ignoring Local Reviews
Positive reviews have a significant impact on your local SEO. Encourage satisfied clients to leave reviews on platforms like Google My Business and Yelp to improve your search ranking and attract new clients.
3. Neglecting Mobile Optimization
With many local searches conducted on mobile devices, optimizing your website for mobile is crucial. According to SEO expert Bradley Shaw, 88% of searches for local businesses on a mobile device either call or visit that business within 24 hours. Further, LocaliQ reports that 80% of local mobile searches convert! Maintain a responsive design and improve website loading times to keep mobile users engaged.
SEO success is not an overnight process. An effective SEO strategy for personal injury attorneys does require a noteworthy commitment of time to execute. The basics of your strategy must start with zeroing in on local SEO. By doing so, your law firm will begin to attract premium local leads online that could play a pivotal role in growing your client base.
Get Started With Local SEO Today
Optimizing your SEO for personal injury law firms demands a targeted and well-rounded approach. By using local SEO strategies, avoiding outdated methods, and auditing your processes and content regularly, you can increase your online visibility and attract more clients to your law firm.