Search engine optimization is tricky. The rules and tactics for an effective SEO strategy are constantly evolving. The reason is simple. Search engines keep tweaking their algorithms in an effort to provide users with the best possible results. This means that law firms like yours, hoping to achieve higher page rankings, must constantly adjust their efforts. It can feel like a full-time job to stay on top of the updates. Unfortunately, it is necessary for any law firm that hopes to remain competitive within the digital marketing arena.
It’s important to view SEO as a long-term strategy for the success of your law firm. It is a marathon, not a sprint. It’s also a strategy that requires constant learning and evolution. The goal is to ensure your website performs to the best of its ability and becomes a magnet for qualified organic traffic.
While it’s a challenge, it just so happens to be one that will pay off in spades with organic search traffic and higher rankings for competitive keywords in the legal industry.
Don’t struggle to etch out meager ranking results on your own. Contact Array Digital today and allow our talented SEO audit service team to help you reach your SEO goals. Call 757-333-3021 today to schedule a technical SEO audit of your law firm’s website. We will provide you with a breakdown of individual pages on your website that need remediation and devise an SEO strategy to propel your website forward. This information can help you determine how to improve your current traffic and reach your ultimate goals for search rankings.
What is an SEO Audit?
A website SEO audit analyzes your website for errors and problems that hamper your efforts to rank well in the search engine results pages (SERPs). Typical SEO audits will diagnose issues with websites that can stem from the following issues.
- Lack of keyword research
- Few to no backlinks
- Outdated site architecture
- Poor crawlability
These are all important issues that affect how visitors and search engines perceive your website. Making sure your law firm’s website is user-friendly, readable, informative, and optimized on both the front and back end is vital for your site’s overall success. At Array Digital, we call SEO audits website quality audits. We look for a wide range of account ranking factors and optimization metrics beyond those listed above, including:
- On-page SEO
- Off-page SEO
- Technical SEO
Our goal is to offer a more holistic approach to SEO analysis that prepares your entire website for improved ranking and better overall performance with search engines and conversion percentages for your practice.
What Does an Audit Cover?
An Array Digital website quality audit covers key factors that impact performance, including your website’s content, on-page efforts, and technical issues. Things like duplicate content, broken links, 4XX and 5XX errors, slow page speeds, and multiple redirects can damage the user experience. Search engines like Google do not promote websites that do not take these measures of quality into heavy consideration. A full site audit identifies these types of problems so you can solve them and move forward.
There are many factors involved in effective on-page SEO, also called on-site SEO. While easier to understand than many of the “behind the scenes” SEO tools, on-page SEO can easily be overlooked or underemphasized in your overall efforts. A solid SEO audit will reveal deficiencies in any of the following areas on your website:
- Keyword research. This is about making sure you’re targeting the right keywords on your website. It’s important to choose keywords people are entering into Google regularly. It is equally important to choose keywords with low competition, especially when just starting your SEO efforts. Don’t overlook the value of long-tail keywords that have even less competition.
- Keyword usage. Once you know the primary keywords you need to use on your website, the challenge becomes using them in proper proportions and strategically. For instance, using keywords and phrases in headers, subheaders, etc., hints to search engine crawlers that these terms are of greater importance. However, stuffing keywords, or using them too many times throughout the content, can result in your website being penalized with a lower keyword rankings. As of 2022, Google is really cracking down on eliminating spammy sites, and keyword stuffing certainly falls into the spam category.
- Internal linking. This art is more important for SEO than many website owners realize. Not only does it allow search engines more opportunities to find various pages on your website, but it also makes it easier for crawlers and readers alike to navigate your website to find more useful information.
- Sitemaps. While not necessarily designed to provide readers with information, sitemaps are critical tools for allowing search engine crawlers to navigate your website. Ideally, your site will offer an up-to-date HTML sitemap at all times. Sitemaps are especially beneficial as they provide roadmaps for search engine crawlers to pages that may not have any internal links.
Once you know how your website performs in each area, you can determine where you must make changes and create an actionable plan.
There are several aspects to off-page SEO. Among the most important is that of backlinks. These are links that come to different pages of your website from other websites, blogs, etc.
Search engines view backlinks as an endorsement of your website. One web page is telling its viewers that your website has something of value to offer and is sending the viewers your way. Not only does backlinking deliver traffic, but it also builds credibility. These search engines often reward your site with a higher page ranking.
You can learn more about the backlinks pointing to your website with an additional link audit.
Many law firms focus the bulk of their time and attention on the visible aspects of SEO, largely under the mistaken impression that these elements are the only ones that matter. It is equally important, perhaps even more so, to dedicate an appropriate amount of time, attention, and care to the technical SEO needs of your law firm’s website. Including the elements listed below.
- Page speed. While some people claim the five-second rule for food, it is the two-second rule for websites. Nearly half of all web surfers will leave a page if it takes longer than two seconds to load. If you’re suddenly experiencing massively high bounce rates, it is likely that page load times are longer than two seconds.
- Site security. Search engines take the security of their users seriously. As a result, they expect the websites they favor to do so as well. So much so that many, Google included, reward secured websites with higher page rankings than unsecured websites. More importantly, secured websites lend credibility and trustworthiness to your website among users.
- Mobile-accessibility. As larger volumes of consumers access the internet via mobile devices, search engines are placing increasing importance on mobile accessibility when ranking websites. Those that are user-friendly to mobile devices enjoy higher page ranking than those who do not. It’s that simple.
SEO technical optimization is very complex. It is a small part art and a large part science. The fact that it is constantly evolving adds another layer to its complexity. Unfortunately, understanding all aspects of SEO, including technical SEO, is necessary for a solid SEO profile. Building a better SEO profile for your website results in increased organic traffic, higher page rankings in the SERPS, and improved conversions for your law firm in the long term. The key is to be consistent in your SEO efforts that have been proven to work.
Our professional SEO audit services seek to maximize the potential of all your SEO efforts, allowing you to take advantage of the many years we have spent learning the intricacies of the process. The Array Digital team of SEO experts has spent years writing content and building productive websites for law firms practicing personal injury, family law, business law, criminal defense, and more.
Do you have any idea how your law firm’s website is performing in any of these categories? This is the type of information our SEO audit services reveal to practices like yours. Reach out to us today to learn more about the pricing options for our technical audit services and how you can use this information to boost your website’s performance in the year ahead.
Signs Your Law Firm Needs an SEO Audit
The SEO audit process benefits most websites. This is especially the case if you have a site that is slow, converting little traffic into business, experiencing a high bounce rate, receiving little organic traffic, and is otherwise underperforming when it comes to results for your practice.
Of course, the best time to conduct an SEO audit of your website is when a site that has previously performed well suddenly loses traffic. This often points to a technical issue that a thorough audit will uncover. Uncovering the problem allows you to quickly correct it so your site can begin moving forward.
What Should You Do Prior to an Audit?
There are a few ways you can prepare for an SEO audit. The more of these steps you follow, the better prepared your site will be when you conduct your audience. However, the three listed below are among the most beneficial and should be considered essential tools to prepare for an SEO audit.
Evaluation of Content
This involves keyword analysis, eliminating duplicate content within your web pages, and analyzing content quality. Your content needs to be accurate, informative, and authoritative for the best results. Above all else, you need to provide exceptional quality in your content that readers will find beneficial. View your website from the eyes of your visitors.
- Does the content answer their questions?
- If not, does it tell them where to find the answers they seek?
- Is your website’s content easy for visitors to digest? Content organized by clear headings works best.
- Is your content confusing or contradictory?
Other things you may want to pay attention to include the length, readability, and arrangement of your content. The goal is to provide the information your visitors need to make better-informed choices when weighing their legal options. Ultimately, you hope they will choose your firm. Providing quality content and a positive experience may lead them to seek out your law firm in the future, even if they elect not to do so on the first visit. Search engines will reward your website with a higher page ranking if you consistently deliver quality content to your audience.
Surf your own website. Visit each page on your site. Notice how fast pages load and how accessible specific information is for users. Do you find navigating your website frustrating? Can you find the information you’re looking for quickly? If you get frustrated surfing your firm’s site, your visitors probably feel the same way. Search engine bots and crawlers understand this and penalize sites with long page load times, do not provide an effective sitemap, and are otherwise disorganized and difficult to navigate.
Research of Competitors
Take the opportunity to view your competitors’ websites. They are probably checking out yours. Look at how their sites rank for specific keywords compared to yours. Evaluate the amount of traffic they receive. See where inbound links to their websites originate. The more you know about your competitors’ websites, the better you can outperform them. More importantly, knowing what your competitors are focusing on allows you to identify areas where you are underperforming as well as where you are outpacing them.
Do note that in order to gain this insight, you will need a suite of SEO tools. You can certainly conduct SEO on your own website, but to do so efficiently requires that you spend money on platforms to analyze your key competitors. Some of these platforms include Ahrefs, Semrush, Moz, and others. There are many other platforms that are free, such as Google Search Console, Google Analytics, and Google Keyword Planner, but they require dedicated knowledge to make the most of the data present. This is one main reason leading law firms choose to hire digital marketing agencies.
With this knowledge, you can expand your strengths while minimizing your weaknesses.
Do SEO Audits Guarantee Rankings Improvement?
The short answer is not necessarily. However, that does not mean you should not conduct an SEO audit. When done correctly, an audit will show you where your site is underperforming.
However, that is only the first step. Next, you must remediate your findings.
An SEO audit provides you with the information you need to achieve a higher rankings for your law firm’s website. When you know what needs to be changed, you have an advantage. It is up to you to put the necessary changes into practice to improve your conversion rate and gain the organic traffic boost you desire.
So, Why Have an SEO Audit Done?
While no SEO audit service can guarantee ranking results, they reveal roadblocks impairing your progress. Removing those roadblocks will allow your website a better opportunity to improve performance in the SERPs and is likely to enhance your digital marketing efforts on all fronts. Failing to address issues will certainly hamper any other efforts you make and derail your current SEO strategy completely.
What Factors are Considered While Conducting Website Audits?
There are many factors considered in the SEO audit process, including the following.
- Content audit of the overall quality of your content
- User experience audit
- Competitors’ SEO practices
- Off-page optimization
- Link profiles for internal and external links
- Site speed
- Accessibility for crawlers
- Site navigation
When you take all the factors revealed in an SEO audit report into account, you have the tools you need to improve user experiences, crawlability, and page ranking.
How Long Does an SEO Audit Take?
This answer varies from one law firm to another. One of the major factors involved in the time investment of an SEO audit is the size of your website. Larger practices or those with larger websites can expect a longer wait for the results. The bottom line is that this is not an overnight process. An in-depth SEO audit service requires weeks of meticulously combing through your website’s data. The information audits uncover, though, when used to make improvements can be transformative for your rankings and organic traffic.
Are SEO Audits Worth It for Your Firm?
The answer is a resounding yes! Because SEO is so critical to the success of your law firm’s website, identifying and addressing potential problems is vital for your success. These are just a few examples of why SEO audits are so important for your organic search rankings, your organic traffic, and, ultimately, your website’s overall effectiveness for digital marketing growth.
The real question is, “Can your law firm afford not to have an SEO audit performed?”
The answer for most firms is maybe.
Sometimes, we sign new clients whose websites only need slight technical SEO changes. Many times, very new firms have incredibly small websites, so there’s not much that needs to be audited.
However, larger or older websites are a completely different story.
For larger law firms, avoiding a website quality audit to save money can initially sound beneficial, but it won’t help your page rankings or advance your SEO efforts long-term. Knowledge is vital, especially when creating a comprehensive search engine optimization strategy.
Why Choose Array Digital for Your Firm’s SEO Audit?
Array Digital is more than an SEO agency filled with SEO consultants that fill in the blanks for businesses as part of an SEO strategy. We specialize in working with law firms across the country to help you with all aspects of SEO, including link building, site structure issues, improving load times, internal linking, and other problems affecting your website’s performance. Our dedicated team of SEO professionals works with you to develop an action plan designed to improve your firm’s ranking, results, and conversions.
We pride ourselves on being no ordinary SEO company. Our SEO experts are experienced strategists that understand the importance of each metric involved in your journey to higher page ranking. Furthermore, we believe in frequently communicating with our clients so that you understand the ever-evolving world of digital marketing.
Our SEO services utilize multiple optimization techniques to advance your website and build upon it for future campaigns. After completing a website quality audit, we’ll collaborate with you to develop an SEO-optimized content strategy designed to acquire and improve keyword positioning. Our on-page SEO techniques include creating meta descriptions, title tags, headings, and other on-page tools to get the attention of viewers, robots, and crawlers the search engines love to send to explore websites.
We have the audit tools and strategists to help your law firm’s website exceed your performance expectations.
Do You Know Why Your Site Is Not Performing Well? We Can Find Out!
Don’t allow SEO issues to derail your marketing efforts. You can achieve the organic ranking results you want. Our team can help. Contact Array Digital today to schedule your website quality audit, which includes a content, on-page, and technical SEO audit to get you started. Call 757-333-3021 now or visit our website to begin your journey to improved performance and results. Our SEO team can help you find out what’s holding your website back.
Our agency also offers website design, social media, and advertising services. Contact our sales team to discover the best plan for you.