We help attorneys and law firms dominate the search engines for their particular practice areas and geographical location. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is one of the many strategies we use to accomplish this. SEO refers to the optimization of a website and link building that is necessary to satisfy search engine algorithms and rank highly. Efficient SEO requires meticulous research, high-quality links, and constant updates to respond to analytics data.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
The key to SEO for a law firm’s website involves creating authoritative content on the practice areas most important to the firm. The websites we create each have more than 40 pages of unique informative content at launch. The legal content on each page of the website is created to answer the questions of the attorney’s ideal clients.
The content we create geared towards the attorney’s state, county and city. Over the next two years we continue to add additional, helping expand to new areas and show search engines that the website is being consistently improved.
In addition to the optimization performed on the website itself, we also help the attorney create a number of professional social media and professional profiles on some of the world’s most powerful legal websites and business directories. This helps both in creating strong backlinks and ensuring that you control even the tiniest element of your online presence.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for Attorneys
Before beginning an internet marketing campaign for your law firm, the attorney should understand how Search Engine Optimization (SEO) really works. The SEO basics are not difficult to understand. Participation by the attorney is encouraged – there are many aspects of the online marketing campaign that can be enhanced or contributed to through a small investment of time.
At Internet LAVA, we believe in creating informed clients. The first step is our process is to educate the attorney about the basics of SEO. The more the attorney understands about the SEO, the more the attorney can appreciate and contribute to the ongoing process.
An Overview of SEO for Law Firms
- Optimizing the Attorney’s Website for the Search Engines
- SEO Techniques that are Transparent
- How Do Search Engines Work?
- Ranking Pages on an Attorney’s Website
- Keyword Research for Attorneys
- Using Social Media for Law Firms
- Using a Blog for Added Benefit
- Using Press Releases for Improved Visibility
- Creating and Publishing Well-Written Articles
- Internet LAVA’s Approach towards Attorney SEO
SEO for a law firm’s website is based on several straightforward factors:
- Whether the content on each page of the website is unique and informative;
- The number of pages on the website;
- The hierarchy and organization of the pages, including how pages on the website link to one another (internal links);
- How often the pages on the website are updates with additional unique and informative information; and
- Whether the interior pages of the website are recognized by other websites as being authoritative on a particular topic (backlinks).
There should be no smoke and mirrors about your SEO campaign. Our processes are transparent and you are always made aware of the purpose behind each element. Within a few minutes you can determine the following information about any attorney’s website and SEO efforts:
- The number of pages on the website and how the content is organized;
- The page rank of each page which is a determination by Google of the importance of that page;
- The quality of the content on each page of the website;
- The structure of the website including how the pages link to each other; and
- The number and quality of each backlink to a particular page on the website.
Search Engine Optimization is the process of improving the natural (organic) rankings of a web site in search engines. The higher a site appears in the search results list, the more traffic it will receive from the search engines such as Google, Yahoo, and Bing. At Internet Lava, our SEO strategies work to ensure that such traffic is targeted and results in higher conversion rates of users.
All major search engines perform 3 basic tasks:
- They use “spiders” to scan millions of web pages periodically.
- They create an index or save a snapshot of the web page as it is scanned.
- Allows web pages to rank in search results for relevant keywords.
A search engine will use special software robots, called “spiders” to scan millions of web pages. This process is referred to as “web crawling.” When a search engine crawls a web page, it will then follow every link found on that web page and continue its journey across the internet. The data it collects on this journey is used to weigh the quality of a website and determine rankings for individual keywords.
Search engines will give special consideration to certain words and phrases on a page based on where the words are located. Words in the title, header, and meta tags will be given more weight than other words on the page. However, a webmaster should not rely too heavily on meta tags as this is but one of many elements that search engines consider.
The goal of a search engine is to provide the user with the most relevant web pages in the search results. Search engines follow a particular set of rules, or algorithm. A search engine algorithm will rely on several important factors to return the most relevant search results.
The content of the page is extremely important to ranking well in search engines. Search engines will give more weight to a page that has unique and detailed information related to a legal topic. Keyword density is another factor; however, a search engine will give higher importance to a page that has more relative or related information than a page that just has the keyword phrase repeated multiple times.
Link Analysis of Off Page Optimization
Another important factor in the algorithm is links found on other websites. The process of improving these factors is known as off-page optimization. Search engines will perform “Link Analysis” by investigating how pages link to each other and the quality of the sites involved. Links from relevant websites that are also of high quality are highly beneficial for SEO.
Search engines will rank pages higher if it considers them to be “important” or more relevant than other pages. One factor that influences this ranking is link popularity. A web page that has high-quality links pointing to it from other websites will naturally rank higher in search engines.
When it comes to links, quality is more important than quantity. Having thousands of links pointing to your site will not help the rankings if the links are from pages that do not contain relative content. It is important to build links that are from websites that are directly related to the subject matter of your website.
Google has developed a ranking system that measures the relevance or importance of a web page based on a scale of 0-10. This is known as Pagerank and is trademarked by Google. Pagerank is determined by a number of factors including incoming links to the page. Pages on an attorney website typically range from a 1 to a 5 in scale (with 5 being the preferred rating).
Time and Longevity
Time is another important factor with SEO. Search engines will rank websites higher if they have been around for a longer period of time. If a website has been scanned and indexed multiple times, it will have a stronger weight than a site that has only been indexed once.
Especially with Google, websites that are brand new will rank poorly for the first several months especially for the trophy key terms. This is known as the “Google Sandbox Effect” and is unavoidable. The best way to get out of this sandbox is to have unique relative content and strong inbound links.
Web content is the most powerful tool that attorneys can use to achieve high search engine rankings and dominate the competition. Most lawyer web design companies will use content that is generic and uninformative. In addition to potential for inaccuracy and bar rule violations, this content can be very bland or even repelling for readers.
Having content that is more detailed than your competitors will give you a huge advantage in the search rankings and set you apart in the eyes of users. Information is the first thing that a consumer will seek out during the beginning stages of their search for an attorney. If you provide your highly informative content that contains value, users will find you and view your firm favorably.
The most important step when getting started with an SEO campaign is keyword research. It is important to understand what key phrases consumers are typing into search engines when they are searching for legal services. We make sure to target each of the most highly searched and relevant keywords. But we don’t stop there.
The most highly targeted keywords are also the most competitive, and the more competitive, the longer it takes to rank highly. Because out content is so extensive, we are able to place emphasis on both the competitive main keywords and hundreds of other phrases about specific areas. There is less competition for these other phrases, but the potential for a conversion and immediate benefit is also much higher. This gives our clients the advantage of ranking highly for keywords that are directly related to their niche practice areas and likewise profitable.
Search engines love social media sites because they are extremely popular and are updated frequently with fresh content. User engagement with a company shows search engine that the law firm provides something of value and should be ranked accordingly.
It is very quick and easy to create a social media profile on a site like Facebook or Twitter and add integrate them into the website.
However, a social media page that is not updated consistently provides little benefit. It is important that there is some regular activity occurring on the page. By networking with friends and making regular posts you can keep the page fresh with new content.
Relevance is also a factor. If you have a website that is about a legal topic, then a social media site that is not relative will not help, right? Well the way to combat this is to “make it relative.” Simply publish content to the page or make updates on topics related to your practice areas. Adding several paragraphs of information about the type of legal services you provide will add relevance to the social media page, further strengthening its SEO capabilities.
Blogs are a form of social media that can be an extremely powerful tool for attorneys because they allow attorneys to publish unique and interesting information about their area of law. Blogs can rank very well in search engines for keyword phrases related to your specific niche areas of practice.
Blogging quickly allows an attorney to connect with their ideal clients. Consumers will often use the internet to search for very specific information about their legal situation. A good blog will rank highly for these searches and increase the amount of traffic to your website. Blogs also serve to highlight your knowledge and participation in the general online community. This is one factor that can go towards strengthening your image as an authority within your field for prospective clients.
A press release is an announcement to the press about a specific advancement or change within your business. A strong online marketing campaign will consist of regularly published press releases about interesting topics. Press release websites are very popular and can give your website a valuable and relevant link. Press releases can also increase the professional image of your firm and solidify your reputation.
An article that is well-written and informative can have a profound effect on your website, extending beyond the benefit of a relevant link. Articles can be published either on or off your website. It is good to use a combination of both. There are plenty of article sites that are popular and highly relevant to the legal industry.
Article marketing can increase traffic and further strengthen your websites rankings. An interesting and informative article can be picked up by other websites and re-published, further increasing your exposure online.
At Internet Lava, we have developed techniques to achieve high rankings in Google, Bing, and Yahoo for attorney websites. Our strategy beings with a professional website design. We know about all of the resources that attorneys can use to boost their rankings while marketing the law firm.
More importantly, we work with our clients to utilize each and every one of these resources to achieve maximum search visibility. By publishing comprehensive and informative content on your website, blogs, online profiles, press releases, and articles, we build an online presence for your law firm that increases credibility and improves reputation.
Internet Lava’s comprehensive web marketing package addresses the various indirect and direct factors that can improve your online presence, both for search engines and users. Since we work exclusively with law firms, out techniques are adapted to your specific needs. We know what you need to achieve the desired results of SEO for law firm websites, and we take care of all of it for you.
Call 1-800-292-Lava (5282) for a free consultation to discuss how our company can meet your internet marketing, search engine optimization (SEO) and website design goals.