Whether you are an established law firm or you are just starting out, you’ll need an SEO strategy that gets you seen by your target audience.
I’m sure you already know why SEO is so important for your business.
But here’s a reminder in case you have forgotten:
For effective SEO, your first port of call will be ensuring your on-page content is of sufficient quality. Although site content doesn’t play a huge part directly in your SEO, it is important for improving user time on site, minimising bounce rates and increasing your average number of page views.
Law firms with good on-page content will maximise their dwell time. This relates to the amount of time a user spends browsing a site before exiting. The higher the dwell time, the more satisfied the customer and consequently the better chance you have of converting visitors or getting enquiries about your legal services. The key to high dwell times is balancing your sales copy with rich site content to ensure you retain audience attention.
On-page optimisation is about ensuring Google can interpret the content of your landing page. For example, if someone searches for “commercial solicitor in London”, we need to help Google understand that the content of our most relevant page relates to that query.
This is achieved through the editing of key tags and elements, including title tags, image alt tags, URLs and headers. We may also review the keyword density of the broader content (for example, how many times do the words “commercial solicitor” and “London”, along with related synonyms, appear within the body copy?).
Technical optimisation of websites ensures that they function well and behave properly within the search engine algorithm. New additions such as core web vitals (CWV) have made technical optimisation even more important for law firms. The focus on multi-device functionality has also meant a number of law firms need to improve their websites as equal attention is now given to mobile compatibility, as well as browser usage.
Good on-page content will maximise their dwell time. This relates to the amount of time a user spends browsing a site before exiting. The higher the dwell time, the more satisfied the customer and the better chance you have of converting visitors.
There is one factor that has grown to overtake all else in its direct correlation with highly ranking web pages, and that is user experience. Having the most important information easily accessible is crucial.
The more intuitively this information can be presented, the better the page is going to rank (not to mention the better the experience for the user and the higher the conversion rates!).
Law firms need to focus on two main areas for off-page SEO. These are domain credibility and link acquisition. Link acquisition used to be a surefire way to get a top ranking in search engines, however, this led to people manipulating it and jumping to top spot despite having little-to-no quality site content. Various algorithm changes have looked to address this, to ensure websites with valuable content are getting the high rankings they deserve.
You’ll need to focus on getting quality links to your website, rather than dubious links that could be considered spammy. A well-maintained website with a blog can be very effective for this, as many organisations will link to this content and therefore your site authority will also be strengthened.
Ranking for the right terminology is important for a law firm as most enquiries either come from legal complexities or more vague questions. Knowing your key terms and optimising page content around these key questions and phrases is the only way you can ensure you are positioning your site correctly for the search engine.
Off-page SEO and domain credibility is incredibly powerful for a law firm, but if your site doesn’t have rich content, proper functionality or good on-page SEO, it still won’t rank as well as it should. Law firms can’t just pick to focus on one of the aspects, they need to have a complete strategy that takes everything into account.
Frequently Asked Questions About SEO for Law Firms
Off-page SEO is concerned with actions that occur outside of your business website in such a way as to increase its position in the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). This tactic is essential if you want to establish domain authority and rank above competitors’ websites. Off-page SEO tactics might involve:
Sometimes referred to as on-site SEO, on-page SEO is about optimising a website with the view to achieving higher rankings and attracting traffic from top-tier search engines. Examples of on-page SEO include:
UX is about the experience a person has when using a website or digital application. The objective is to help the user understand what’s required of them so they can make an informed decision at the end. To improve the user experience:
Local SEO helps improve your law firm’s online visibility within specific geographical areas by optimising your website and online presence for location-based keywords and ensuring consistent NAP (Name, Address, Phone) information across various online directories. This approach helps attract potential clients who are actively searching for legal services in your area, therefore boosting local traffic, and driving more qualified leads to the practice.
SEO will not fix your rankings overnight. Although you might score some quick wins, to rank for the most competitive legal terminology and phraseology will take weeks, months and even years. You’ll need to keep an eye on your top-performing URLs too, as other law firms will be looking to snatch those top spots.
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