Reputable and experienced lawyer marketing agencies utilize Google Adwords for lawyers in order to drive traffic and generate leads for their law firm clients while working on SEO. SEO for lawyers is a long-term play and though it is evergreen it can take a while to see results. At FORWARD Lawyer Marketing we deploy PPC for lawyers in order to generate immediate traffic and leads while building a long-term SEO strategy.
While employing Adwords can be very profitable, it can also be costly for those that aren’t well versed in the advertising platform, specifically when choosing keywords and service areas to advertise to.
The first Adwords ads began on October 23, 2020, and from that date, online advertising and indeed advertising, in general, would never be the same. Google Adwords has grown since then to be a nearly $40 billion platform and is the largest self-serve platform in existence today.
Long gone are the days where law firms could just buy yellow page ads and put up billboards. Your potential legal clients today are looking for an attorney online, usually on a mobile device, and if you aren’t at the top of the results you are unlikely to get seen. Adwords for lawyers are extremely competitive and can be very expensive, especially if you are inexperienced.
Bids for certain legal keywords and phrases can be extremely costly. A look at the top 10 most expensive keyword phrases for 2021 bears this out:
As you can see by the chart above, all of the most expensive keyword phrases are legal terms. These are organized by “cost per click”, meaning if someone clicks on the ad that is what you will be charged. How many law firms can afford $475 per click much less $815?
With many law firms making thousands or even tens of thousands of dollars per client for certain cases, it’s easy to see why these keyword phrases are so expensive.
Since there are only a few ad spots at best on the top of page one, it means Adwords advertisers have to fight for top rankings and paying more money per click is generally necessary!
Not only can many large law firms afford to pay these exorbitant prices and still profit, but it is also one of the best ways to get fast qualified leads. Where else can law firms put themselves in front of people specifically searching for legal services in their area?
Even though these phrases are expensive, for some law firms they still make financial sense because the leads are highly targeted and convert well. Consider the top keyword phrase, “offshore accident lawyer”, even though the CPC is $815 an offshore accident could be worth hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars.
By targeting long-tail keywords, you ensure that you are being as specific as possible which will also result in lower CPC. This also makes it far more likely that you’ll attract optimal potential clients interested in your specific practice areas, rather than general ‘browsers’.
So think specific. Think niche. Think buyer intent. Think of the practice areas that generate the most revenue for you. Also, utilizing geo-specific terms and targeting specific geolocations can lower CPC. For example, going for the term Chicago high net worth divorce lawyer and targeting that to the local proximity of metro Chicago will be far less costly than an ad that shows nationwide for the phrase “divorce lawyer.”
It is also a good practice with Adwords keyword bidding to target specific zip codes and postal codes and not just entire cities or counties. This especially applies when you live in a high-density population area.
In many cases, some areas of your city will be more target-worthy than others. This can include communities that are more affluent or more densely populated as well as those that are nearby your law firm. So, make a point to break down these areas by zip and postal codes, rather than targeting these areas at the city level.
At FORWARD Lawyer Marketing, we recommend being aggressive with negative keywords when setting up PPC ads. This method will help boost your conversion rate by reducing unnecessary clicks and it will result in more qualified potential clients visiting your website or landing page.
Pro Tip: If you click on the Keywords column of Google AdWords and select “Search Terms”, you’ll see the actual search queries being used when your ad appears. This will help you identify keywords that are used but aren’t relevant so you can add them to your negative keyword list.
The cost-effectiveness of running AdWords depends partly on your success at keyword bidding. Knowing what to target and how much to bid can increase this cost-effectiveness significantly
Keyword bidding is very closely tied to your ad budget. Some think that bidding for the first ad position in Google’s search results for some keywords is a sound strategy. In truth, you should understand that bidding too high or for the first position can eat away at the daily budget too quickly. You can actually blow through your monthly budget in a day with the wrong bid strategy.
Another thing to keep in mind is that people can be‘click-happy’ with the top ad position because they don’t really think about burning someone else’s money. Sometimes it works better to be in positions 2-4 with your Google ads, as searchers may be more selective in those positions. The 2-4 positions also tend to be much less expensive on average.
One of Google’s newest offerings on their ad platform is Local Services Ads, also known as LSAs. This relatively new advertising opportunity is a high-quality local lead-generation tool that connects potential clients for your law firm directly to you through call, text, or your law firm’s intake software. It is designed to match potential legal clients with local law firms.
Local Service Ads are different than standalone Google PPC ads because an LSA click does not send a local user to your firm’s website. An LSA click connects to your law firm’s customized Google profile where the user initiates a phone call, text, or appointment booking. At FORWARD Lawyer Marketing we have a team that specializes in Local Services Ads for lawyers.
Other important characteristics that set LSAs apart from regular Adwords ads include the following:
Google’s LSAs feature a credibility-type badge showing that Google has vetted and verified the businesses listed on the LSA platform. Local Service Ads for lawyers require a background screening process, verification of law license/bar number, and proof of insurance. Each LSA is connected to one Google My Business address, which must have at least one client review and an average total of all reviews score of three stars out of five.
The cost/payment model for LSAs is different than some of Google’s other advertising programs. Local Service Ads for lawyers are a “cost-per-lead” program rather than a “pay-per-click” program. This means that a law firm only pays when it receives a call/text/online intake generated through Google’s LSA app. Instead of paying for clicks you are only paying for actual leads.
Local Service Ads for lawyers link to the Google profile of your law firm with detailed information about your attorneys, services, address, office hours, and other critical information that could be helpful to a potential client. Through the Local Service Ads profile, a user can book an appointment, call or text your law firm for more information.
As you can see, a lack of knowledge about Google Adwords and how to optimize ads can cost you a fortune and possibly blow a monthly budget in a click or two. This is exactly why it pays to hire Adwords certified professionals that specialize in PPC for lawyers and know how to get the lowest CPC possible with the best click-through rate (CTR).
At FORWARD Lawyer Marketing, PPC marketing for lawyers is what we do. We have managed many PPC advertising campaigns for all types of law firms over the years. We are ready to share our in-depth understanding of how Google AdWords campaigns for lawyers work and strategize on how we can make them work for your specific practice.
First, we consult with you and assess your law firm’s requirements. Then, we create, manage, and monitor campaigns specifically geared toward your practice areas. Everything is accountable, so you can make business decisions based on hard data. We have seen ROI dramatically increased and leads triple after taking over the management of our clients’ PPC campaigns. What would that do for the caseload of your law firm?
The demand for your legal services is already out there. With our law firm PPC management services, you can harness that interest to grow your practice and dominate your local market.
We can help you decide when and how to use advanced online marketing tools, and how to fit them into your budget. Contact us now, or read on for more information about the following topics:
This case study shows how a single-attorney family law practice started attracting more high-asset, financially complex divorce cases.
Click here to read about a family law firm that increased caseload five-fold in a few months.
FORWARD Lawyer Marketing has a Certified Google Adwords Team that has decades of experience with PPC for lawyers and are also experts in Local Services Ads for law firms. Contact us here or give us a call today for a free consultation and site audit at (888) 590-9687