Do me a favor.
Hop onto Google and search your most important keyword. It’ll be something like “[business location] + [what you do]”
What do you see? Most likely, it’ll be something like this:
- 3 local services ads
- 3 PPC ads
- A local 3-pack (plus the possible map ad)
- Organic results, about half of which are directories and review sites
Whether you see opportunity or hopelessness depends on your perspective. On one hand, that’s four chances to show up on page 1 of Google for money-making keywords. On the other, unless you pay-to-play, you’re relegated to showing up only below the fold (if at all).
This phenomenon has left many to declare the death of law firm SEO.
So why does Juris Digital still offer it as a primary service?
Only 2-3% of Google searches result in a PPC click
According to clickstream data presented in The State of Searcher Behavior, only 2% of all Google mobile searches and 2.8% of Google desktop searches resulted in a PPC click.
Before you start thinking that this is a “people don’t click on ads” post, consider another recent statistic revealing that 60% of people can’t distinguish paid ads from earned search engine results.
Seems contradictory right? People click on ads because they don’t know the difference and yet only 2-3% of searches actually result in a PPC click?
In reality, these facts can coexist.
People click on ads when they’re triggered, but that small percentage of total clicks to ads tells us that there are far more Google searches that are informational/research-based (that don’t even trigger ads) than there are transactional/bottom-funnel terms (that do trigger ads).
Remember the example that we opened with? It’s the difference between:
- Denver divorce attorney
And queries like…
- How long does divorce take in Colorado?
- How is property divided in a Colorado divorce?
- Are divorce records public in Colorado?
People research before they buy and every customer’s journey is going to look a little different. SEO helps local businesses remain “always on” – in other words, they’re not just there in the consumer’s I-want-to-buy moments. They’re reaching their potential customers with helpful content that builds trust while they’re still in their information-gathering stages.
In industries where Google has taken up so much of the SERP real estate with features like paid ad results, SEO still has an important place in your top and mid-funnel efforts.
How SEO & PPC make each other better
Not only is SEO critical for targeting potential customers while they’re still in their research and comparison phase. SEO has also been shown to make PPC better for transactional terms, and vice versa.
Studies have shown that conversion rates from search traffic are actually at their highest when SEO works in conjunction with PPC.
So, have an ad showing on page 1 and your click-through rate might be 4%. Add in an organic page 1 ranking and that CTR might jump to 5 or 6%.
Digital marketing is less like boxing and more like football (or whatever your team sport of choice is). Instead of the channels going head-to-head in a match to determine a winner, they’re each playing a unique role on the same team to overcome the other team – your competitors.
Not only should you diversify to increase your effectiveness, but if the fall of Facebook referral traffic taught us anything, it was that we need to diversify or die. Companies that relied predominantly or solely on referral traffic from Facebook ended up having to dole out layoffs en masse or had to close their doors completely when the social platform changed their algorithm.
It’s never a good idea to put all your eggs in a basket you don’t control. Diversifying your marketing also makes you future-proof. It won’t be a fatal blow if one lead source decides to fail you.
How earned exposure from SEO can lower your customer acquisition cost (CAC) over time
If PPC is pay-per-click, is SEO free clicks?
While the work isn’t free, placement in organic search results is earned. You don’t have to keep paying Google for the traffic you get from showing up in those results. You’ve earned the right to be there! Contrast that with PPC, where you have to keep paying for that visibility, and the second you stop paying or your budget runs out, you lose it.
Think about what earned exposure can do for your customer acquisition cost over time.
You don’t have to keep paying for your website to stay on page 1, so as your website begins to rank for more and more of these keywords, you’ll increase the amount of potential new business coming to your website, and when you increase potential clients without increasing the investment it takes to procure them, you can lower your CAC.
Does SEO work for attorneys? Yes, and here’s proof.
We could talk all day about the merits of SEO (and that’s the truth – we love search so much we could spend a whole day talking about it!), but at some point, you’ll want the evidence.
“This all sounds good,” you say, “but how do I know it actually works?”
I’m glad you asked. Juris Digital’s portfolio is full of law firm success stories, like GJEL Accident Attorneys who experienced over 13,000 website visitors and 150 leads per month after starting an integrated marketing approach that combined organic search, social, and other channels. Check it out.
The importance of SEO isn’t limited to a specific set of industries. Properly optimizing your website for search engines is critical if you don’t want to miss out on your share of the 3.5 billion queries that people search every day.
Whether you’re interested in SEO or still need some convincing, I encourage you to reach out and learn more about how SEO can help grow your law firm this year!
Juris Digital has helped hundreds of law firms bring in consistent, quality new cases from search engine optimization. Ready for more and better leads?