Update: It’s almost 2022 and law firm names are still the BIGGEST ranking factor in local search. So just keep that in mind when reading this below 🙂
Whether you’re an attorney striking out on your own for the first time, or you’re looking to re-brand your existing law firm, you’re probably wondering what should I name my law firm?
Strategic branding is crucial for any business, and law firms are no exception. At Juris Digital, we’ve helped many law firms develop a brand name that contributes positively to both their reputation and their ability to drive new business.
Below I’ve explored three common types of law firm naming conventions to provide insight on the pros and cons of each.
Law Firm Name Type #1: Your Name(s) Only
Example: Andrew Flusche, Attorney at Law
The first type of law firm name to consider is to simply use your name, or the names of you and your partners. Historically, this has been a popular choice for law firms.
Pros of using your name as your firm’s name:
- Personal brand enhancement. When you use your name as you law firm’s name it means that anyone who ever has an interaction with your brand will, by default, hear your name. This can be a positive, especially if you intend to be particularly involved in the marketing of your practice, or if you are actually going to be the person handling the “lawyering” for your clients.
- Flexibility. If you use your name as your law firm’s name, you allow for flexibility in your service offering. Since you’re not indicating any particular practice area with your name, you’re better positioned to address a wider range of legal practice areas.
Cons of using you name as your firm’s name:
- Ambiguity. If any given person who is exposed to your firm has never heard of you personally, your law firm’s name may not give them much of an idea as to what it is that you actually do. Furthermore, if you have an especially common name (ie. Matt Green, thanks Mom and Dad), you may face branding challenges associated with competing against others with the same name.
- Lack of keywords. We know that having keywords in your business name can help with ranking in search engines for searches related to your areas of practice. Using only your name as your firm’s brand could hinder your online marketing efforts in this way.
Law Firm Name Type #2: Your Name(s) + Your Area of Law
Example: Sutliff & Stout, Injury & Accident Law Firm
The second type of law firm name to consider is your name(s) plus a descriptor of your primary area of practice. This option is great for firms who do practice in a specific niche, but still want to include the names of the attorneys in the firm name.
Pros of using your name plus your practice area as your firm’s name:
- Keyword value. By having a description of your primary services right in your business name, you make the task of ranking well in search results easier.
- Uniqueness. Even if you have a common name, by adding your area of practice in addition to your name you’ll be able to differentiate your brand and make it obvious to people how it is that you can help them.
Cons of using your name plus your practice area as your firm’s name:
- Length. By using both your name and your practice area you may end up with a name that is not especially short. This may cause issues with memorability and perhaps with logo design as well.
- Inflexibility. By including your practice area in you law firm’s name you do add an element of inflexibility to your brand. If you decide to expand your service offering in the future, you may need to update your firm’s name.
Law Firm Name Type #3: Your Practice Area Only
Example: Workplace Rights Law Group
The third direction you could go with your law firm’s name is to choose not to use your name, and instead just use your primary area of practice to brand the firm.
Pros of using your practice area only as your law firm’s name:
- Keywords. By using only your primary area of practice in your law firm’s name you gain a nice SEO advantage. Why? Because your domain name will likely match your law firm’s name, and since it has good keywords, you’ll gain the advantage that comes with having keywords in your domain name. Furthermore, when you get backlinks it is likely that your firm’s name will be used as the anchor text for the hyperlink. This will help you rank for keywords related to your practice.
- Clarity. When you use your name only for your law firm’s name, there may be confusion as to what you actually do. If you use your practice area only, there will be no confusion. Anyone who sees “Workplace Rights Law Group” knows instantly what type of law the firm specializes in.
Cons of using your practice area only as your law firm’s name:
- Weak personal branding. If you’ve built up equity in your own name, using your practice area only as your law firm’s name does little to leverage that equity.
- Extreme Inflexibility. By using only your area of practice as your firm’s name you drastically limit flexibility. If you ever decide to add new services, you’ll have to develop a completely different brand.
The success of your new law firm is not likely to be determined solely by what you choose to name it. Like any enterprise, your success will be determined by the quality of the products and services that you provide. However, it’s still important to weigh the pros and cons of various law firm naming options and choose a name strategically given your specific services and goals.