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Eleven “MORE” SEO Specialists Share Their Best Tips for Lawyers

“IF YOU WERE WORKING WITH AN ATTORNEY TO IMPROVE A LAW FIRM’S SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION, WHAT WOULD BE YOUR #1 TIP TO GET RESULTS?”

This is the question we posed to more than 50 SEO specialists who have done SEO for lawyers. Their answers will provide you with good direction whether you’re formulating your own law firm SEO strategies or just looking for general advice.

If you want to improve your own website rankings or your clients’ website listings in the search engines, then this expert Q&A roundup is what you’re looking for.

Enjoy and share it with others. Thank you!

1
JOHN LINCOLN
ignitevisibility.com
twitter.com/johnelincoln

I would follow the legal news, such as new large and ground-breaking cases that change the industry, legal news in the media, etc.

I would comment on each development in blog posts and on social media.

In addition, I would write blog posts on longtail terms and create guides around the biggest service terms they want to rank for.

Finally, I’d make sure to have a conversion strategy around each segment of keywords.

2
JOEL KLETTKE
casestudybuddy.com

There are a lot of tips I’d love to share, from claiming and optimizing local listings, to making their web pages suck less (no oceans of jargon, please!)

But I’m a content guy, so that’s where my head goes right away.

A lot of lawyers think they need these big blogs full of content to attract links.

Rather than dump a bunch of money into a blog—which takes time to maintain that lawyers don’t have, and a constant budget to feed that could be spent elsewhere—focus on creating a handful of really strong evergreen resources based on what your clients are constantly asking during initial calls.

Think about it from a lead’s perspective: many have never hired a lawyer before. Content that helps them know what to expect isn’t just great for driving people to contact you, it’s also  highly shareable.

If I had a law client, I’d tell them to build the best-written, most visually engaging resources for people considering hiring lawyers, and then share the hell out of those.

3
STEPHEN FURNARI
lawfirmsuites.com
twitter.com/stephenfurnari

As a content marketer, I would suggest that lawyers survey their clients and prospects about the most pressing questions or the most painful issues they have about the lawyer’s area of practice (i.e., “If my wife divorces me for cheating, will I lose custody of my kids?”). Lawyers need to pay really careful attention to the exact words clients use to describe their problems, since clients often describe legal issues differently from how a lawyer would. For example, I may be a securities lawyer, but a client may refer to me as a “PPM Lawyer.”

I would then create very detailed content that answers those questions and provides actionable advice and case studies, using both blog copy and video. In these articles, avoid selling (i.e., if you cheated on your spouse and need to talk to a lawyer, call me). It just pisses potential clients off.

The title for each post and video would be the question their clients ask in their own words—even if the terms/words used by the client are not how the attorney would describe the issue.

By building a library of these question/answer posts, you begin to optimize your website for the long tail natural language search your clients will most likely use when they have a legal problem you can solve.

As a side note, I see a lot of firms who do a good job with search rankings, but then do a crap job of creating a user experience on their site that converts (obviously not the clients of Rankings.io). If you do a great job of driving traffic but your clients are turned off when they get there, you’ve just wasted a lot of effort.

4
JOSH BACHYNSKI
www.seo-help.me
twitter.com/joshbachynski

Give the web searcher what they are looking for better than everyone else.

5
STEVE WIIDEMAN
www.top10seotips.com
twitter.com/seosteve

We work with 3 attorneys currently. My number one tip is to focus on building a solid taxonomy from aggregate competitor research (at the page-level) and to build as much supportive content under the primary practice area you are optimizing for.

We did this for slip and fall recently and came up with over 50 new pages we could create around places people slip and fall and causes of slip and fall accidents. The results a week into the content build out were amazing.

6
JUSTIN HERRING
yeah-local.com
twitter.com/JustinCHerring

We work with a lot of attorneys so here you go!

There’s not just one tip which will get it done. They need to set up and optimize pages for each service they offer with 500 words of content and a video explanation, set up Google My Business, and get 20+ 5-star reviews, then get/build guest post backlinks to those service pages and the GMB listing.

Should be ranking within months depending on the budget.

7
RYAN SCOLLON
www.ryanscollon.co.uk
twitter.com/ryanbowlerhat

My #1 tip for improving a law firm’s SEO would be to get listed on industry-specific directories. A large majority of people look for a local law firm, so the Local SEO side of the project would be super important.

Not only do law firm directories rank pretty well, being associated with that business category also helps build Google’s trust with your business. It’s a super competitive industry, so small jobs like this can make all the difference in getting you ranking at the top of the search results.

8
RYAN BIDDULPH
www.bloggingfromparadise.com
twitter.com/RyanBiddulph

My #1 tip would be to create helpful, problem-solving content to lay a solid SEO foundation. SEO is about problem solving more than ever.

Whether the firm hired skilled freelance writers or boosted its credibility by having lawyers write articles, the smart way to build your SEO on a solid foundation is to patiently and persistently write robust, thorough content through a blog.

9
GREG LEE
www.bkv.com
twitter.com/bkvadvertising

SEO and content marketing tactics have been widely adopted to the point that everyone has pushed out large volumes of decent content. Decent content on a subject matter is affordable on a weekly basis.

Any decent writer can produce it. As a result, we see the same five tips, best practices, and how-to blogs across every website.

You can try to make content that is 10x bigger and better. But that is costly and hard to do consistently. Instead, you can get more value out of the same resources by spending a bit more time on up-front research.

Find out why your attorney is unique. Every attorney has special talents, connections, insight, history, and life lessons that go into their success as an attorney. And better yet, their passion to practice law. Have your writers and editors call in for a discovery meeting with the attorney that you treat as if writing a biography.

Give writers a chance to ask questions and dig into areas they find inspiring about their subject. If you get your writers inspired about a person and that person’s passion for practicing law, you will get that special thing that pushes your content beyond the everyday, every-website blog posts.

10
KEN LYONS
www.measuredsem.com
twitter.com/KenJLyons

As my #1 tip, I’d highly recommend that any attorney or law firm website prioritize speeding up their website.

Google is hyper-focused on speed and getting users the information they seek as fast as possible, and that focus on speed as a ranking signal will only continue to grow. BTW here’s a fantastic list of 101 tips to improve site speed www.digitalexaminer.com/101-page-and-site-speed-optimization-tips/.

We’re seeing some pretty incredible results with organic traffic boosts across client sites when we’re able to improve load times.

Increasing site speed is also a scalable activity because many of the improvements you can make (like fixing render blocking CSS and JS) will boost load times for not just the page but the entire site.

What’s more, the majority of law firm sites I’ve worked on and seen are notoriously slow. So, given how important site speed is to Google (and users), if a law firm focuses on boosting load times they’ll be miles ahead of their competitors.

11
ALLEN MACCANNELL
www.webceo.com
twitter.com/CloudBasedSEO

Don’t overstep the boundaries of your niche.

When setting up a niche website, the most important thing to keep in mind is the audience you plan to attract.

People who look for the nearest law firm in Google are unlikely to require a blog post about 10 ways to tell a competent lawyer from a fraud. Instead, they’ll want help with a very specific problem, which will show in their search request: for example, “bankruptcy law firm London” or “criminal lawyer Manchester.”

Being a representative of your office, you know better than anyone what kind of services you provide. That knowledge is the foundation on which your site will stand. Aim precisely at the audience that wants what you have to offer.

A legal service firm is meant to help people with a narrow set of very characteristic problems that you may find only where the law is involved. Some firms specialize only in a certain area, such as family law, and therefore deal with issues like divorce, alimony and child support.

Other firms take on multiple areas; they cast a bigger net and occupy a wider niche. Takeaways: the content of your firm’s website must be optimized strictly for the issues you deal with. Act within your niche, or else you will attract an audience that needs something your website cannot provide.

Most people look and fight for easy-to-think-of topics and keywords because they can’t imagine how wide their net can be for catching potential customers.

Instead of just using content ideas that are tightly associated with your main topic, you have to “go wide” with your research.

People who might be interested in your products or services have lots of different problems and interests. And it is up to you to explore them and see which ones are relevant to your business.

Then you can write SEO optimized content to bring them to your website and slowly nurture them into customers.

Chris Dreyer

Chris Dreyer is the Founder & CEO of Rankings.io, which provides SEO (search engine optimization) services to lawyers, to help them obtain more clients, cases and revenue. To learn more, visit rankings.io or email Chris at chris@rankings.io.

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Filed Under: Featured StoriesPersonal Development

About the Author: Chris Dreyer is the Founder & CEO of Rankings.io, which provides SEO (search engine optimization) services to lawyers, to help them obtain more clients, cases and revenue. To learn more, visit rankings.io or email Chris at chris@rankings.io.

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