7 Essential Local SEO Tips for Law Firms, Attorneys and Lawyers
Local SEO in the legal space is tough.
CPC ad costs are through the roof, too, making visibility a difficult endeavor for many small, less established law firms and lawyers.
But here’s the good news: many local businesses, including law firms, are not quite good at marketing themselves.
Many are yet to exploit some of the best opportunities for increasing their search engine visibility, as you might find out if you conducted a thorough competitor analysis.
If we just play the game right, and you’ll stand a good chance ranking your website on the first page of search engine results.
Here are 7 of the most important areas to address if you want to boost your local SEO presence:
Research Niche Keywords
Before embarking on your ranking project, it makes sense that you should know exactly what keywords you’d like to rank for.
Solid keyword research must be the foundation for any SEO work.
For example, if your Chicago-based law firm specializes in personal cases, some of the keywords you might want to target include:
- Chicago personal injury attorney
- Personal injury lawyers in Chicago
- Chicago injury lawyer
- Accident attorneys Chicago
Use a keyword research tool to find all variations of the search terms potential clients use to find you (or your competitors).
It’s also important that you niche down to the exact services you offer.
As an example, if you only deal with personal injuries resulting from accidents, then you’re better off building your content around “accident attorney,” “accident lawyer,” and other related keywords.
Choosing the right niche keywords will help you understand how you should structure your website, and what kind of content you should write to attract your ideal clients.
Make Your Site User-friendly
Having an easy to use website is important not just for rankings, but also your users.
You want your site users to have a great experience, so they can stay on the site longer and ultimately take the desired action, such as filling out a consultation form.
Your website should be organized in a way that makes it easy for the user to find what they’re looking for. This will reflect in the site’s navigation and URL structure.
Your URLs should be concise and descriptive at the same time. Anybody looking at any of your URLs should be able to tell exactly what that page is about.
Here’s a good example:
Such a URL structure is particularly important if you offer multiple services and want to make it easy to navigate to the individual service page.
See this website for a good example of a well-structured law firm website.
Make Your Website Mobile-friendly
Mobile internet is on a steep rise, currently accounting for at least 50% of all web traffic, compared to desktop at 45%.
This trend is set to continue into the foreseeable future, but you know what’s more interesting? That mobile phones have the highest conversion rate, with a whopping 78 percent of local mobile searches resulting in offline purchases.
It’s no surprise then why Google now gives preferential treatment to mobile-first websites.
Luckily, it’s easy to make your website mobile-friendly if it isn’t already: simply ask your web designer to implement a responsive template on your website.
Create a Google My Business Listing
More than ever, consumers are relying on the internet to find information about local businesses. This includes directions to your office or store.
A Google My Business or GMB listing is absolutely essential for local SEO if your business has a physical location.
Creating a GMB listing takes only a few minutes, but the payoff is huge because your office will instantly become visible on Google maps.
If you use a less competitive keyword, it’s also one of the best ways to get on the first page and instantly become visible to potential clients even if your website doesn’t yet rank in organic results.
Build Local Citations to Strengthen Your Local SEO Profile
Besides Google My Business, your law firm should also show up on some of the top local directories, such as Yelp and Yellow Pages.
Local citations are profiles of your business on these directories. These directories are important because:
- Many consumers already trust them and use them to find businesses of interest
- They almost always show up on the first page for most local searches
- They are great places to build trust through customer reviews
For law firms or attorneys, Avvo and Nolo are two of the top directories to list your practice.
When building or editing your local citations, make sure your NAP (name, address, and phone number) is accurate on all directories/review sites, and is consistent on all channels, including your website and social media accounts.
Create Quality Content
Everybody’s talking about content these days. “Content is king,” they say.
Unfortunately, however, too many businesses are busy churning out content without understanding what it takes to engage readers and move them to take action.
Law firms, as it turns out, are no exception.
So what kind of content works best for law firms?
Legal advice, of course. Coach your audience on the exact steps to take after an accident. Teach them how to answer DUI charges.
If you can provide very specific answers to some of your reader’s most pertinent questions, you can be sure that some of them will pick up the phone to contact you for business–simply because they can trust you as an expert in their legal matter.
Build Quality Links
Writing quality articles isn’t enough if no one’s linking to them.
To earn some important backlinks, you’ll need a comprehensive link building strategy that includes:
- Outreach–reaching out to relevant influencers to link to your resourceful blog posts
- Guest blogging on authority websites in your city
- Link prospecting–find websites that link to legal resources and ask to be included on the list
- Internal linking–make sure your blog posts link to your service pages.
Since building quality backlinks can take a lot of time and effort, you may want to outsource to a trusted SEO services provider.
In an era when nearly everyone uses Google to start their search for service providers, local SEO is arguably the most important marketing activity for local businesses.
Taking action on the steps recommended above could be the difference between having a full pipeline of clients for your law firm, or no clients at all.
If you enjoyed this article, check out our guide on some of the best traditional marketing techniques to grow your practice.