I’ve sometimes joked that SEO is like getting a date – if you try too hard, you’re going to mess it all up. All joking aside, lawyers who are interested in search engine optimization (“SEO”) can actually get a lot done with just a little work.
Here’s a quick SEO checklist for lawyers interested in improving their rankings:
- write down the name of the TOP city or state your law firm is targeting
- write down the TOP area(s) of practice your law firm is targeting
- combine your GEO + AOP + lawyer or attorney and those are your target keywords (eg Charlotte Bankruptcy Attorneys, Philadelphia motorcycle accident lawyers, etc.)
- turn your attention to your site – make sure you put your law firm’s mailing address in real text in the footer or navigation of your website. It will be harder to get rankings for cities/towns where you don’t have a physical presence.
- make sure you talk about your top AOP on your homepage and link to a more detailed page within your site. Talk about your GEO but don’t beat it to death – restrict yourself to one or two “natural” mentions of your target geography. It doesn’t take much. Resist the urge to spam with a long list of 30 towns located all around your practice. “The Ft Lauderdale attorneys of Smith & Jones offer legal help to victims of personal injury in Broward County Florida.” is a good, sample sentence that illustrates how a little content can go a long way – there are three GEOs in there!
- consider the conversion mechanisms located on your site – is it easy to reach you? does your site “speak to” your audience?
- carefully build incoming links to your website (see Link Development for Lawyers) – it will make you an “authority”
- consider producing an animated PowerPoint or lawyer video and distributing it through YouTube. Video is too large a part of online marketing to ignore.
- over time, measure your results using an analytics package like WebTrends or Google Analytics. Don’t forget to track the phone calls by using a call tracking number unique to your website.
Now set a course to update your website content every 3-4 weeks over the next few months. Add a page or paragraph that simply talks about what you do best within your law firm… or a practice area you have targeted for growth. Forget about strategically filling the page with your keywords. You’ll hit them “naturally” enough when you put together your copy. If you’d really like to massage your copy, review it to make sure you hit all the synonyms and variations of your target keywords. For example: if you target personal injury cases, make sure you use words like injuries and injured as well. Develop your copy to express your idea a number of ways, not a number of times.
Content + Authority = Rankings