The law industry can be a very competitive market, both online and in-person. SEO should be an integral part of your marketing operations, as word of mouth just doesn’t cut it anymore.
Marketing strategies that include paid ads to obtain new clients can be expensive, and when SEO is done right, it will get your site seen on the most popular search engines.
In 2021, the majority of businesses are using SEO to grow traffic to their site and to get their services seen by potential clients – especially in the law industry.
Keep reading to find out more about SEO, and why your law firm needs to implement an SEO strategy.
What is SEO?
If you’re not familiar with the marketing world, then you should start by knowing that SEO stands for search engine optimisation.
SEO is the process of optimising your site so it ranks higher with search engines, so your site is more visible when people search certain terms.
Google and other search engines have certain rules that you must follow if you want your site to appear on there, and you have to fit with their algorithm.
The more you research, understand, and comply with these requirements, the higher your site will rank.
These search engines all have bots that gather information on every website and put them into an index. Taking into account all SEO practices, the algorithm then orders sites and pages and determines where they’ll appear when certain terms and queries are searched.
The most popular search engine (by far) is Google, with around 90% of the internet population using Google as their preferred search engine.
It’s such a popular service as it delivers the right results based on what people search, and only ranks high-quality and optimized websites higher up.
On-page or on-site SEO is the practice of optimizing your web pages to boost your website’s ranking and to promote organic, ad-free traffic.
On-site SEO includes the content aspect, as well as headline optimisation, HTML tags, meta descriptions, and optimized images.
Creating high-quality, readable content is an integral part of any SEO strategy. Make sure that your content is something that your target audience would want to read – for example, you don’t want to create a blog post about shoes when you’re a law firm trying to attract new clients.
Be sure to provide valuable information in your content so your readers will gain something from visiting your site.
Producing a variety of content types such as guides, reviews, and blog posts will boost your DR (domain ranking), and give potential clients a reason to visit your website and learn more about your business.
When conducting any SEO activities, you should always consider meta descriptions. A meta description is that little snippet of text under the clickable link (title tag) after you search something using a search engine.
Meta descriptions/ meta tags typically provide a description of what the page is about and encourage your readers to click the link.
According to Google, meta tags don’t affect your domain rankings – but there is plenty of evidence suggesting that better, more concise meta descriptions do help SEO efforts.
The title tag is an HTML tag found at the heading of each page. It’s a clickable link found on search engine pages that gives readers an insight as to what topic the content is about.
Missing title tags can negatively impact your SEO efforts, so make sure you write powerful, concise title tags so your readers know what to expect.
Compelling headlines and the correct use of header tags can make your content look a lot more professional and optimised.
A bad headline can deter any potential viewers, and result in less web traffic – and therefore, fewer clients.
Header tags are HTML elements that order your subheadings and separate them from chunks of ‘normal’ text. H1 is bigger, H2 is smaller, and H3 is even smaller.
They should be used in order of content – regular subheadings typically use H2, and if you have a subheading within a subheading, then H3 should be used.
Although header tags don’t do much for SEO, they still help to give your content some order and make it more user-friendly.
Before you publish any content, all images should be optimized. Images that haven’t been optimized can increase loading time, which is bad for SEO.
Images that have been correctly optimised can also give you more ranking opportunities – for example, your site may appear on google images thanks to a quality image.
Ensure all images are relevant – it’s better to use no images than poor quality, irrelevant images that don’t match the tone of your content.
Off-page SEO is just as important as on-page SEO and can do wonders in boosting any optimisation efforts. It covers just about everything that doesn’t occur directly on your website.
Things such as link building, outreach, local SEO, and social media are all part of off-page SEO operations. It’s everything that you do off-page to increase traffic to your website, and get it seen by potential clients in your local area.
Building links is a fundamental part of improving your domain ranking. However, many people make the mistake of including any links, when you should only be using links that link back from a high-authority site.
Linking to and from sites with low authority can lower the ranking of your own site.
Not only do more links from other sites increase the chance of getting your website and content seen by others, but it also increases the authority of your own site – making it more Google-friendly.
There are many techniques for acquiring backlinks, and it can be a tedious task that requires a lot of patience.
Outreach is an integral part of it, which can include compiling thousands of names and email addresses into a document and sending emails out in the hope that someone will link back to your site.
Another way is by offering guest posts. Many blog owners and businesses will post your content on their website with backlinks to your site, as they get something in return – your content.
This method is more time consuming and beats paying for backlinks and doing link exchanges with lower authority sites.
Social media isn’t an essential part of SEO, but it is a big part of gaining site traffic. It’s a way of getting to know your customers, and a way for your customers to get to know you and to ask any questions they may have.
Many marketing companies will manage your social media accounts for you, as it keeps your customers engaged and informed on any upcoming events or promotions.
How Can SEO Help Solicitors and Law Firms?
Law firms and the legal industry is an extremely competitive market, and SEO will help you beat your competitors and be seen on search engines before them.
This will ultimately lead to more leads and more clients, helping your business grow to its full potential.
Hiring an SEO specialist takes care of all the dirty work for you, from writing pages and pages of content to editing meta descriptions and creating a huge list of backlink opportunities.
For one person, this can be a very daunting task – but when you hire an SEO team, you can relax knowing every aspect of your content, website, and outreach is being taken care of.
Part of SEO is getting your business seen locally. One of the main ways of doing this is getting set up on Google My Business (GMB’s), which gets your site on Google maps listings.
If you have multiple business locations, then it’s necessary to include those too.
On Google Maps, the top map listing gets 33% of clicks – so your goal should be to secure that top place on Google Maps. There are things you should include to increase the chance of more clicks – such as:
- Adding as many images as possible that represent your law firm.
- Including a video – whether it be a corporate video or just a simple video of the property.
- Ensuring that you have accurate opening hours.
- Including all locations – this makes your business seem more professional.
- Having a concise, powerful description of your firm, including how you can help your client.
- Be sure to add contact information – e.g names, addresses, and phone numbers.
According to Google, covering all bases and providing a full description of your GMB is a ranking factor, and the more accurate and concise your information is, the higher you’ll rank.
Consistency is key when it comes to getting your business details submitted to local directories – any inconsistencies will stick out like a sore thumb and confuse your potential customers and clients.
Your business should be listed in the correct categories using the correct keywords for optimal results.
Local SEO will get your business seen by the right people. Whether you’re a small local business or a global firm, a large percentage of your searches and clients will be from the local area.
Many people choose to include their location in the Google search, so if you search ‘family lawyer Liverpool’, then local family lawyers in Liverpool with the best SEO will show up first.
Even if people don’t include their location in their search, your site will likely show up.
In 2021, Google is more efficient than ever when directing searchers to the best websites. When you type a query into Google, your information will be used to give you the best, most relevant results.
If you’re sat on your laptop in Liverpool and search for something like ‘family lawyer’, then the top results you see will be local firms near you, which is super convenient whether you’re the searcher or the business owner.
As we’ve outlined throughout the article, search engine optimisation is the process of getting your website ranked as high as possible. You want any potential clients to be able to find you online easily using the right search terms and keywords.
If you don’t practice SEO, then it’s not very likely that anybody will see your web page unless they type the name of your business – and even then, the chances are slim.
SEO isn’t about tricking the system or buying a high domain ranking – it’s about hard work, patience, and dedication. It’s about building your site to be the best it can be and working with the system to get the best results.
As you’ve probably gathered from the article, SEO can be difficult, time-consuming, and a bit of a headache. The SEO scene is always changing and new ways of optimisation are always popping up.
Google is forever changing its algorithms and requirements, and it can be difficult keeping up – which is why we’re here to help.
If you want to get your website seen by the right people, then it’s best to hire SEO services, who know the trends and are up to date with any changes in the marketing world.
At Quirky Digital, we offer quality SEO services that can help your solicitor or lawyer business grow.
With our proven track record, you can rest easy knowing that your site’s optimization is in safe hands. Click here if you would like further information.
Liam launched himself into the SEO industry while still in high school and many years later he has gathered extensive experience in improving the profitability of small business websites, with a particular focus on link building and local lead generation.