One of the biggest challenges facing modern lawyers is the prospect of online visibility. If you want to improve your reputation, attract new clients, and beat the competition, you need some way to achieve more visibility for your brand online. But most lawyers are experts in the legal realm; they aren’t sure how to use marketing and advertising strategies to support their firm.
With the right strategies working in your brand’s favor, you can develop your reputation and attract more clients—all without jeopardizing your budget.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO): An Introduction
One of the best marketing strategies available to lawyers and law firms is search engine optimization, or SEO. This strategy comprises a number of both onsite and offsite changes designed to make it easier for your website to rank highly in search engine results pages (SERPs). In other words, by practicing SEO, you’ll make it more likely for your website to appear when prospective clients search for terms relevant to your business.
This strategy is especially beneficial to lawyers for several reasons:
- Relatively speaking, SEO is cheap. It relies on onsite and offsite content for the majority of its impact, making it much less expensive than traditional advertising strategies. Plus, the results compound over time, resulting in one of the highest returns on investment (ROIs) in the marketing industry.
- Long-term results. SEO is a strategy optimized for long-term results. It takes a long time to build your domain authority (DA) high enough that you start to see a measurable impact from organic traffic, but from there, it’s easy to keep your campaign steady and grow it over the months and years that follow. Few other marketing and advertising strategies can compare to this level of efficiency.
- Any lawyer or law firm can partake in SEO, from solo practitioners to corporate behemoths. SEO is practical universally, and can be used for nearly any strategic approach.
- Competitive flexibility. SEO is also flexible. By using keyword research, you can select specific keywords (like words specific to your areas of expertise, or local keywords related to your city of residence) that you can build your strategy around. This way, you can avoid competing with an oppressive competitor, while choosing smarter, smaller battles more likely to go in your favor.
How SEO Works
How exactly does SEO work?
First, understand how Google and, by extension, most search engines work. Google wants to provide users with the “best” results possible, which means it needs to consider both the relevance of those results (how closely they match the content of the user’s query) and the authority of those results (how trustworthy each website is).
SEO is a collection of strategies that attempt to improve both your relevance and your authority. From there, it gets complicated, since there are literally hundreds of factors that apply to one area, the other, or both.
For example, the technical structure of your site plays into its perceived trustworthiness. Google prioritizes sites that load quickly, mobile-optimized pages, and other web content that is easy for users to access. You’ll also need to make sure your site is easy to “crawl,” meaning Google’s indexation bots can parse it quickly and efficiently.
That said, much of the power of SEO comes from content. Writing detailed, informative blog posts on your main website will increase the trustworthiness of your site and give you a platform where you can work in various keywords and keyword phrases. Getting offsite content featured with external publishers can help you earn links, which in turn will boost your DA and improve your overall “authority” in the eyes of Google.
Good SEO strategies include a balanced network of different tactics, including technical onsite SEO, onsite content, and offsite content (with link building).
Working With an Agency
SEO is simple enough that you can learn the basics in an afternoon, but it’s complex enough that even after years of experience, you’ll have difficulty with the finer points of troubleshooting. Besides, as a lawyer, you should be focusing your time and effort on topics related to your main profession. That’s why you should work with an SEO agency if you choose to pursue SEO; not only will they free you up to do the work you do best, but they’ll also be able to execute your strategy with greater precision, and higher efficiency.
SEO is a strategy that takes time to develop, so the sooner you get started, the sooner you can ramp up to see massive benefits. Consider reaching out to an SEO agency to discuss the possibilities, or begin doing research on your own to learn more; there’s almost no limit to how far this approach can take you.