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Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, is a critical aspect of any law firm’s marketing strategy. According to The National Law Review, 96% of all people seeking legal advice use a search engine to find answers. SEO plays a key role in determining a law firm’s visibility and credibility online, leading to a higher number of visitors to the firm’s website. For those who are new to it, or even for those who have some familiarity with it, SEO for law firms might seem overwhelming.
Many people have questions and concerns about how SEO works and why it is so important for law firms. At Law Quill, we are ready to assist with these valid questions and help you demystify the SEO process. Consider reaching out to us for a quick phone or zoom call by scheduling an appointment on our calendar today.
What is Law Firm SEO?
Simply put, SEO is the process of bringing more visitors to a website through higher rankings on search engine result pages. In other words, the first links that show up when you enter a search query in Google, Bing, or any other search engine are on the front page due to SEO. Law firm SEO, also sometimes known as attorney SEO or legal SEO, refers to the strategy of increasing a law firm’s visibility and credibility through search engines.
When it comes to SEO for law firms, a key aspect is organic ranking in search results. Here, organic means unpaid – while law firms can pay for prominent spots in search results through paid ads, organic is far more advantageous. According to Search Engine Watch, a resource that provides research on search engines, search engine users are more likely to click on organic results in Google and Bing by an incredible 94 percent, leaving only 6% clicking on paid search results.
How Does Legal Firm SEO Work?
While we know that SEO for law firms is important, the question for many is: how does it work? In other words, how do law firms improve their rankings, visibility, and credibility online? Essentially, the goal of SEO is to provide search engine users with the most helpful and relevant experience when looking for knowledge.
SEO makes it easier for search engine algorithms to scan websites for appropriate content and display it in the search results. While there is no guaranteed method to rank as number one in organic search results, there are many tactics law firms in an effective SEO strategy to rank higher in search results and increase the likelihood that they will rank number one in search results. These strategies include:
Creating Content That Addresses Search Engine Users’ Inquiries
Attracting potential clients requires ensuring that your law firm’s website answers the questions that they are most likely to ask. An average search engine user might inquire about a law firm’s location, the kind of law the firm practices, its reputation, or their price range.
An effective SEO strategy includes content that directly answers potential clients’ questions.
Search engines want to send users to websites that address their inquiries, so it is important to anticipate and address inquiries on your website. This makes it more likely that search engines will rank your law firm’s website higher.
Using the Right Keywords on the Website
When it comes to SEO for law firms, It is not enough to simply create content. The content must be keyword optimized. Keyword optimization involves researching, analyzing, and selecting the best keywords to drive traffic to a website from search engines. These are important because search engines use automated bots to evaluate websites. The best keywords for your law firm to use will vary based on factors such as location and type of practice.
For example, a law firm that specializes in personal injury and is based in Alabama would use the keyword “personal injury lawyer in Alabama” to make it clear to both search engines and visitors that this is what they are. While it may be possible to anticipate through intuition what the relevant keywords are likely to be, make sure to also engage in research and look at the data to ensure that the keywords are relevant. There are many keyword research tools out there that can assist with that by looking at search volume and the likelihood of the law firm ranking for that term, and by offering keyword suggestions.
Leveraging Keyword Variations and Placement
It is important to note several tactics that optimize keywords. First, keywords often have variations, because people will enter search inquiries in different ways. It is important to also incorporate keyword variations such as “best personal injury lawyer in Alabama” or “where to find a personal injury lawyer in Alabama” to encompass a variety of different searches that relate to the main keyword.
Second, the placement of keywords matters. On webpages, keywords should be placed:
- In titles
- In descriptions, including meta descriptions and alt descriptions
- In headings and subheadings
- Evenly distributed within paragraphs
- Within the web page’s URL
Another important strategy in SEO for law firms is link building. Backlinks, or links on other websites that link to your website are an important way to improve ranking in search engines. Backlinks essentially work as a vote of confidence for a website, implying that the content on the website is valuable and worth engaging with. When search engines see that a website has many referring links from other websites, they view the site as a credible source.
One way to link build is by placing your law firm’s information in directories such as:
- Local directories, like Google for Business
- Social media profiles
- Content sharing on social media
- Reviews and endorsements by other websites
Focusing on User Experience
User experience is also critical to SEO for law firms. Speed, interactivity, and accessibility of websites all play an important role in optimizing your website. Search engines also take into consideration website accessibility to users. Additionally, a website that is easy to navigate is more likely to lead to visitors contacting you; it is important to note here that the website should be optimized for smartphones and tablets, not just personal computers.
Learning how to optimize SEO for law firms can be confusing which is why it is often helpful to work with experts. Consider reaching out to a digital marketing company that specializes in content for legal firms, such as Law Quill.
Why is SEO Important for Law Firms?
SEO for law firms is key to attracting clients. The vast majority of people these days seeking legal support look online – and are far more likely to click on higher-ranked websites on search engines. Some of the reasons that SEO for law firms is so important include:
- It leads to increased traffic to websites in the long term.
- It contributes to people not only visiting the website but also to more “conversions” by calling the office or sharing their contact information.
- It makes it easier for people to locate the office physically, as the firm’s address will be more readily accessible.
- It also makes it easier for people to search the law firm and read reviews, which, in turn, further builds up rankings in search engines.
- It improves law firms’ reputations, placing them on the internet as verifiable and credible authorities in law.
- It gives the law firm the ability to reach potential clients on the move – since they can be reached on smartphones and tablets.
How Much Does Law Firm SEO Cost?
For firms eager to optimize their SEO, they may be wondering: how much does it cost to engage an expert on SEO for law firms? The answer can vary as SEO is time extensive and an expert may charge an hourly rate. For this reason, it is important to include it in the law firm’s budget if SEO becomes something that the law firm wants to prioritize. When looking for a good SEO consultant, make sure that the consultant is comfortable with:
- The role of content and use of keywords
- The importance of backlinks
- Optimizing user experience
They should also be familiar with the legal industry. A good law firm SEO consultant will never guarantee overnight results for SEO; SEO strategy takes time and is a cumulative process.
How Working with a Legal Marketing Agency Can Help
Developing a strong strategy when it comes to SEO for law firms may seem complicated, which is why working with an experienced marketing agency may be to your benefit. An experienced marketing agency can help you understand the SEO process and work with you to create a strong SEO strategy.
Law Quill is an attorney-owned marketing agency that emphasizes creating unique and customized content for every law firm. We work closely with law firms to demystify SEO and help your firm reach potential clients faster. We focus on providing resources to help them succeed with their legal marketing online. Schedule a free visit with us by scheduling a phone or zoom call on our calendar today at your convenience or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.