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How do you choose the best law firm SEO services? It’s simple: Suit the needs of your practice.
Easier said than done, of course. There are many factors that go into it — there’s no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to the legal profession. However, there are some factors that narrow down your choices.
We’re going to look at two of those factors here. The first is the size of your firm. The second one is your practice area.
We’re looking at these two concerns first because they tell us a lot about your business. Your size usually determines your reach, your short-to-medium-term strategy, and your budget. Your practice area usually determines your market. They’re also something you’ll know offhand.
Feel free to contact FORWARD Lawyer Marketing for a more precise analysis of your law firm. To learn more first, please feel free to navigate straight to the points that are relevant for your practice:
Marketing for single-attorney practices usually focuses on making the most of the lawyer’s personality, reputation, and style. For younger attorneys, SEO typically focuses on building results for the practice area and geographic territory, which is similar to the approach for a boutique law firm.
More experienced and established attorneys usually have other options and objectives. At FORWARD Lawyer Marketing, we provide many services that directly or indirectly improve SEO for specialist or highly focused single-lawyer practices:
We would define boutique law offices as firms with few attorneys and minimal support staff. In general, these small businesses benefit most from the following services:
The biggest surprise for most attorney-entrepreneurs is the need for a hands-on, managed SEO service. It’s more expensive than the software-as-a-service model. Many smaller firms opt for the cheaper option — to disastrous effects. The old adage, “You get what you pay for” never applied more.
SEO is a set of active practices that makes your site rank higher in search engine results. You need to manage it. We would never recommend a do-it-yourself SEO approach for an organization that didn’t have the time or experience to do it right.
In general, the biggest SEO priorities for smaller law firms include adding website content, updating sites for technical reasons, and setting up services like Google My Business and Local Services Ads. Where you would want to start would depend on your current rank and goals.
Firms with multiple locations usually have a robust website with plenty of articles and multimedia content. However, it isn’t always optimized for search engines. Mid-size to large law firms usually benefit most from the following:
SEO for large law firms focuses on improving and refining existing processes. It’s possible to do this efficiently because these businesses usually generate enough web traffic to get significant, actionable data from in-house tracking and testing. The key is knowing what to look for.
Starting here with personal injury law firms, we’re going to look at what makes legal practice areas differ from one another. These sections will be brief, so feel free to call us for more details.
In terms of Personal Injury law, attorney marketing really needs to double down on SEO. Why is SEO so important for personal injury and accident lawyers? It’s simple — everything else is just wildly expensive.
You can target a personal injury PPC campaign to lower cost per click, but you’re still operating in the niche with the highest keyword prices on Google. That’s highest, period — not just in law.
SEO, on the other hand, just requires that you invest in high-quality content and solid strategy. There are no costs associated with individual clicks. You simply have to understand that it’s a long-term play, not instant gratification.
SEO for family law attorneys usually focuses on specific practice areas. We publish detailed blog posts covering specific topics in asset division, divorce, custody, and so on.
We also do a fair amount of SEO updates and rewrites for family lawyers, since changes in other areas of the law profoundly affect this area of practice. For example, tax reforms modify asset division, marijuana decriminalization changes strategies for at-fault divorce, and so on.
Criminal defense SEO is often a niche-domination strategy. Many criminal defense attorneys prefer specific types of cases. The goal of SEO in this case is to funnel the most appropriate traffic while filtering out other types of leads that would be less appropriate.
For example, a post-conviction relief practice would not want to have a lot of visitors who are recent arrestees. This strategy requires highly focused copywriting and keyword analytics to do successfully. What FORWARD Lawyer Marketing does is focus on the most profitable leads that provide the most revenue for your firm.
Estate planning and probate is a practice area with three basic aspects (and therefore three different types of clients): instrument drafting, probate procedure, and dispute resolution. These three services tend to have very different clients.
Our initial consultations with estate planning firms usually focus on determining the exact types of cases that the attorneys are trying to attract. Additionally, there is a strategic aspect with this practice area. Just because a law firm takes multiple types of cases does not necessarily mean that ranking is necessary (or profitable) for all of them.
Estate planning SEO usually focuses on services that involve end-of-life planning, the passing of estates with the least taxation, etc. Establishing a high search engine rank for wills or advance directives usually generates a more significant return on the marketing investment than probate administration, for example. Will-and-testament clients often come back to estate planning firms for maintenance, new instruments, and perhaps even for estate administration, generating lifetimes of revenue.
Employment, workers’ comp and labor practices deal with a wide range of clients. Most focus on either the organizational side or the employee side.
Tone and accessibility are major factors in this practice area. We need to get to know our clients’ market before we can plan and write an effective SEO campaign.
The most effective SEO writing for these firms tends to be clear and straightforward. Most potential workers’ compensation clients are already frustrated by bureaucracy and technical language, a factor that could lead to higher bounce rates for complicated copy.
Real estate law, unsurprisingly, can be extremely territorial. Many firms work in a single county or municipality, focusing on their political connections and knowledge of local regulations to get things done.
This territoriality is more often the case for attorneys who handle zoning and permits than it is for those who handle disputes, transactions, due diligence, contracts, title research, and so on. Even so, it’s rare to find a dedicated real estate firm that doesn’t focus on a specific geographical area.
With that in mind, real estate law firm SEO usually has a strong local search focus. Listing services, such as Google My Business and Local Services Ads, are important to link firms to searchers who are providing their locations electronically. Adding place names into the marketing copy is also essential, as is providing specific information about local regulations when applicable.
Business and corporate law is a vast practice area. Some concentrations make sense, such as firms that serve local small businesses. Others, you might not think of as needing SEO. However, there are plenty of opportunities in organic search traffic for nearly all types of corporate lawyers.
Basically, these techniques generate and direct web traffic. As long as exposure is valuable, SEO is valuable. SEO can help business law firms towards various goals, such as:
There are two main categories of immigration lawyers, each with very different SEO needs. Business-focused immigration law practices typically need to capture traffic from experienced administrators or human-resources professionals. General immigration and deportation defense lawyers are aiming for leads from a much wider range of individuals.
As with any other SEO campaign, we start by identifying the exact type of case that our client wants to bring in. That determines our choices.
For law firms that want to attract organizations, we would typically target specific visa terms, business language, specific legal practice areas, and so on. For those who want to attract a wider audience, we would aim to answer general questions, target plain-language keywords, and usually write at a more accessible level to accommodate people who speak English as a second language.
We hope this has provided some insight into how SEO can serve various types of firms. However, the truth is that every practice is unique. Give us a call at (888) 590-9687 to discuss how we can help accomplish your law firm online marketing goals.