A Beginner’s Guide to¬†SEO¬†for¬†Law¬†Firms

Written by Erik J. Olson. Posted in .
Home > Blog > A Beginner’s Guide to SEO for Law Firms

SEO¬†is essential to your¬†law firm’s¬†online marketing¬†success, but getting it right can be tricky. As many as¬†70% of small businesses don’t have an¬†SEO¬†strategy, and this causes them to lose traffic and potential customers. Array Digital can help you build an effective¬†SEO¬†strategy. Call 757.333.3021 or contact us online to get started.

SEO for Law Firms – Getting It Right

Family law firms face a significant amount of competition for potential clients in their local communities. If searchers cannot find your website in the search engines, and preferably on the first page, you are going to lose some of those clients to your competitors. As a family law attorney, search engine optimization is the starting point of your online marketing efforts.

SEO is the foundation, and it complements PPC, social media marketing, and other law firm marketing efforts. A good SEO strategy may help you reach the first page of the search results, which is where your potential clients are looking

Why SEO Matters for Your Law Firm

Search engine optimization¬†refers to the strategies and techniques you will use to create a web page that ranks well in the search engines. When you learn¬†SEO¬†techniques, you can use the Google¬†algorithms¬†in your website’s favor. You can put the page elements into each page of your site that will impress Google and make it more likely that your page will display first in the¬†search engine results¬†pages.

SEO matters because of the habits of potential clients. When people need the services of a family law and divorce lawyer, they will enter a search term in the search box, but rarely will they click beyond the first page of the results. If you do not have an SEO strategy that is working for you, they are unlikely to find your site.

Are there ways to get website traffic without SEO? Yes, through linking, social media, pay-per-click campaigns, and email marketing, you can, but not with the same level of success as through the search engines. The search engines are where people go when they need legal help, and you need to be visible.

SEO Component 1: Web Design

Digital marketing starts with a law firm website. You need a high-quality website design to serve as the foundation of your marketing efforts. This is your online presence, and you want it to be a professional and effective tool in your overall marketing efforts.

Put in the Right Page Elements

As you build your website, use content, title tags, meta descriptions, and schema to help the search engines find it.

  • Content: We will look at this more closely in a minute, but¬†high-quality¬†content¬†gives you a place to work on your branding while also working on your¬†SEO.
  • Title Tags: Title tags tell the search engines the main part of your content and should contain your most important keywords.
  • Meta Descriptions:¬†Meta descriptions¬†are the little blurbs that show up under the¬†search engine results¬†listing that tell what the page is about.
  • Schema: Schema is a special type of code you can add to your website to tell the search engines what the page elements mean.

In addition, the internal linking structure, site map, site layout, page load speed, and many other factors of the website’s design all impact your¬†SEO. Take the time to build a quality website as the first step of building your¬†SEO¬†strategy.

Do Not Neglect User Experience

User experience matters when building your website design. Make sure you pay attention to how well the site functions for users, and adjust the layout of elements to give them a positive experience.

User experience impacts your SEO because it impacts the number of visitors, average time on page, and bounce rate. All of these serve as ranking factors that Google considers as it chooses which pages to list first, so user experience matters.

SEO Component 2: Quality Content

Once you have a site, you must fill it with content. Content marketing refers to using the content on your website and blog to brand yourself as an authority and encourage new clients to contact you for legal services.

Perform Keyword Research

Content marketing¬†also focuses on¬†keyword research. Your content needs to showcase your¬†legal services¬†and knowledge, but it also must contain the words and phrases people search for when they are looking for a lawyer who works in your¬†practice area. Perform¬†keyword research¬†to see what¬†family lawyer¬†clients search for when seeking an attorney’s help.

Create Professional Content

Once you have those keywords, use them to create effective, professional, and authoritative websites content. As you build your content, look for creative ways to add some. Consider:

  • Practice area¬†pages: Dedicate one page of your website to each of your different¬†practice areas.
  • Blog: Create a blog that gives you space to write articles and publish press releases.
  • FAQs: Have an¬†FAQs¬†section that answers important questions in your legal¬†practice area.
  • Testimonials: Request¬†testimonials¬†from clients and publish them in a prominent area on your page.
  • Video content: Video content is highly engaging and can help increase your branding efforts.

Consider working with a content provider to help create that content as you focus on building your legal marketing plan. Make sure the content is high-quality because both your reader and Google will notice if you have poor quality content.

SEO Component 3: Linking Strategy

A linking strategy is another important part of a¬†family law¬†attorney’s¬†SEO¬†strategy. You need both internal links and external links to boost your¬†search engine results.

Internal Links

Internal links help the search engines crawl your pages. They create a map that the bots can follow to see what you feel is important on your page. They also help the user experience be a positive one by making it easy to find information while doing research on your page.

For example, if someone lands on your family law practice home page and finds a link to your child support information, your divorce attorney page, and your child custody page readily displayed, they can click on the one they need and get the information they require.

External Links

External links, also known as backlinks, tell the search engine that your content and page are important enough for other sites to link to it. This strategy gives your site authority in the eyes of the search engines, and that boosts your overall law firm SEO efforts.

Linking has to have a strategy. A link-building strategy that is effective will give the right information to the search engines to show that you are an authoritative site with a well-planned strategy.

SEO Component 4: Mobile-Friendly Web Design

Today’s¬†law firm¬†client is more likely to search for law services on a phone than on a desktop according to data from¬†Statista. In 2019, mobile search queries reached 141.9 billion compared to 62.3 billion for desktop users. This means your website needs to work for mobile users if you want it to be effective.

Make a Site Mobile-Friendly with Responsive Web Design

The best way to reach mobile users, as well as desktop users, is to create a responsive¬†website design. Responsive design responds to the device a user is searching on so that the site displays the best version of the site for the user’s device.

Optimize for Fast Page Load Speeds

As you optimize your site for mobile, make sure you address site load speed. If your site loads too slowly, it is going to push people away, and this increases your bounce rate. Google also measures page load speed and rewards sites that load as quickly as possible. Your family and divorce law website need to load quickly on all types of devices and browsers.

SEO Component 5: Search Intent

Google search¬†intent refers to understanding your¬†target audience¬†and what they are really seeking when they perform a search for a site like yours. Knowing your¬†target audience¬†and clients well is critical to understanding search intent. You need to provide a website with content that answers¬†searchers’ most burning questions, and this is the best way to not only ensure your¬†website ranks¬†well, but also ensure that¬†prospective clients¬†become¬†new clients¬†when they land on your site. In other words, addressing search intent will lead to greater¬†conversions¬†through¬†organic search¬†traffic.

Read People Also Ask

So how can you do this? The “People Also Ask” tool on Google’s¬†SERPs¬†can help. When you search for your target keywords, see what questions pop up in this box, then consider how you can build content that answers those questions. This strategy will give you a site that stands out in the¬†legal industry¬†as an authority.

Check the Competition

You can also check the pages of high-ranking competitors. What are they including in their websites? Are there questions they answer that you are not answering on your site? If not, then you have found a place where you can add additional SEO efforts.

Add a Blog

The best place to add this content is through a blog. When you come up with a hot topic in your particular practice area, instead of adding another practice area page that addresses it, add a blog post. This will give you an easy way to generate more traffic to your website and brand yourself as a helpful, authoritative voice.

SEO Component 6: Local SEO

Local search engine optimization refers to working on your website so that it targets local clients. Since most law firms do not practice nationally, this helps target your efforts on those clients who can actually use the services you offer.

Google Business Profile Listing

The best way to start with local SEO is to make sure your Google Business Profile page has updated information with the correct address and phone number for your firm. Add other SEO elements, like keywords that relate to your practice area.

Legal Directories

Once your Google Business Profile is ready to go, take some time to create listings on other legal directories. Make sure the contact information, hours, and practice areas match across these different platforms. Work with an SEO agency to find directories that have the best impact on your SEO efforts.

On-Page Content

In your on-page content, add local search terms that will drive additional traffic to your site. Use as many geographic terms as you can to reach your target audience.

Social Media Signals

Finally, use social media to add more local search options. Create social media profiles for your page on the major sites, and ensure that your address and phone number match your website and Google My Business page.

The more signals you can send to Google about the location of your law firm, the more effective your local law firm SEO efforts will be.

SEO Component 7: Analytics

Finally, do not ignore the analytics that comes with various SEO tools. You need to understand how your website is performing and make adjustments when needed.

While your analytics will have many components to look at, some of the most important include:

  • Page Load Speed: Google wants to see pages that load in two seconds or less, so make sure yours is meeting this metric.
  • SEO¬†Visibility: This metric shows how visible the site is in¬†organic search¬†results for specific keywords.
  • URLs: The URLs on your site need to have no errors or indexing issues, which your analytics will tell you.
  • Content: Improving your website content, including titles, descriptions, and tags, will help improve your¬†SEO.
  • Linking: Analytics will tell you about the success of your linking strategies.
  • Page Views: This data will tell you how many times people viewed your page.
  • Bounce Rate: Bounce rate refers to how many people visit your page and click away without interacting with the site.
  • Average Time on Page: This metric shows how much time site visitors stay on a single page, which can indicate how effective it is at generating interest.
  • Keyword Ranking: With this metric, you can determine how well your page ranks for a particular keyword.

Analytics can be confusing because they generate such a vast amount of data, and often you will not know what to do with all of it. Google Page Insights gives you quite a bit of valuable information, but you have to act on that information to make a difference in your SEO planning. Work with SEO experts to understand your SEO, analytics reports, and overall results.

Hire a Professional to Help with SEO

Your law firm SEO has many moving parts. Sometimes, managing all of them can be overwhelming. Most lawyers are quite busy serving their clients, and many lack the time to focus their efforts on SEO.

Hiring out¬†SEO¬†services¬†to a professional¬†SEO¬†firm can help. An¬†SEO¬†professional can help you build your search engine¬†marketing strategy, so you can build a site that effectively reaches your¬†target audience. This partnership will free up your time to focus on other areas of your law practice, and it will also ensure that you are getting the right advice about your¬†law firm’s¬†SEO.

Working with a professional also keeps your site ahead of the changes in the search algorithms. Google is constantly adjusting and tweaking its optimization, and working with an SEO professional ensures you know those changes when they come.

Array Digital offers professional SEO marketing strategy help that will assist you in building and marketing your family law website. We have proven, effective strategies that turn your searchers into clients through organic search engine traffic, effective content, and proven marketing techniques. We help you move towards the top of the search results, ahead of your less qualified competitors, and right where your potential clients are searching.

Our proven strategies of technical SEO, link building, content creation, off-page optimization, and on-page optimization will increase your site traffic. More site traffic usually leads to more new cases. It also builds brand awareness and makes you more visible than your competitors.

Remember, the majority of law firm clients are going to find and choose a firm using Google. People who are searching on Google are usually those who are ready to hire a lawyer for their legal needs. You need to be visible to reach them. Array Digital uses SEO to make that happen.

As a legal professional, you understand the importance of working with the right, knowledgeable person when handling a legal case. The same is true for online marketing and SEO. Let our experienced professionals tackle this important job for you, so your website can be a top-performing site in the crowded legal industry.

Reach out to Array Digital to Analyze Your Search Engine Results and Create a Plan

Array Digital is here to help you make your website a success. Request a free consultation to discuss SEO strategies with our professional team by calling 757.333.3021 or by using the online contact form to speak with an experienced digital marketing expert at Array Digital today.

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Written By Erik J. Olson
Founder & CEO
Erik J. Olson is the Founder & CEO of Array Digital‚ÄĒa marketing agency that enables its clients to achieve their dreams, fulfill their missions, and impact more lives with their services.

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