Are you a law firm looking to take the next steps and achieve local, national, or even international success? Inc Studio is here to help.
We know how hard it can be to reach that next level. The market is more competitive than ever, potential clients are almost spoilt for choice and it can be difficult to even get your website noticed. And that’s all before they’ve even landed on your home page!
But what if we told you there was a way to naturally reach your target audience and significantly boost your leads, all without spending a fortune on marketing?
In this blog post, we will explore what law firm SEO is and how you can use it to propel your business forward. Keep reading to find out more.
What is SEO?
First things first, we need to clear the air and establish what SEO is – just in case you were unsure.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is the process of optimising your website for search engines, such as Google, Yahoo and Bing.
The main aim of SEO is to rank higher on Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs).
Typically, the higher your web page ranks on search engines, the more organic traffic your site will generate.
How to Generate Website Traffic with SEO
Whether it’s an original blog post or a service page, optimising your web pages to match the search intent of a specific keyword is an effective way to generate traffic organically.
Search engine bots will scan through your content and decide if it is:
A – High-quality, original content, and
B – Relevant to the search query.
A well-known way of showing a search engine bot that your content matches the criteria above is by strategically including relevant and semantic keywords that are relevant to the target search query.
An effective way of discovering these keywords is through an SEO tool, such as SE Ranking or Ahrefs.
However, SEO is far more than just keywords – but we’ll touch on that in more detail later on in this post.
Over time, your website’s domain authority will organically grow as more users visit your site, link to your articles and convert as leads.
Domain authority is a metric that determines the trustworthiness of a specific website, which in turn can help improve and sustain a law firm’s rankings on SERPs.
It is not something any given site can improve on overnight. Instead, it takes patience and a dedication to delivering high-quality content.
Are There Different SEO Rules For Each Search Engine?
Yes, each search engine has its own unique algorithm that determines where web pages rank on their SERPs.
While the rules are generally the same, some search engines take more priority over specific strategies than others.
This means that what might rank as the top search result on Google may not break the top 10 on Bing or Yahoo.
For example, when comparing Google and Bing SEO, we can see that Bing places a higher priority over exact keywords and a domain’s authority.
On the other hand, Google’s search engine bots prioritise mobile usability and quality backlinks when deciding where a page will rank on its SERPs.
By considering what all three major search engines prioritise within their algorithms, you stand the best chance of boosting your firm’s brand awareness and online presence naturally and cost-effectively.
Why is Law Firm SEO Important?
One of the biggest challenges for any law firm is working out how to stand out against competitors and sit at the top of competitive search queries – especially without breaking the bank.
When people search for legal advice and services, your firm will likely be competing against a range of other options. And without proper optimisation, potential clients may miss your website completely.
Additionally, it’s highly likely your main competitors are implementing a unique SEO strategy of their own, so you need to make sure you’re staying one step ahead.
That’s why SEO is so important, especially now in 2024 when the market is more competitive than ever before.
By implementing an effective SEO strategy, your law firm is offered the unique opportunity to stand out from the crowd and boost its online visibility.
Optimising for industry-related, competitive keywords allows your business to organically attract potential clients who are actively searching for legal advice and services online, helping your law firm to grow.
Can I Do Law Firm SEO Myself?
Nothing is stopping you from learning the SEO basics through SEMrush Academy and implementing your own SEO strategy, but we recommend you hear us out on why it may be worth hiring an SEO company first.
To start, without proper knowledge about specific search engine algorithms (and most importantly the SEO techniques they flag), you could be in danger of getting your website flagged, penalised, or even worse – completely removed from SERPs.
Optimising for SEO requires an in-depth knowledge of the various ranking factors, as well as how to properly balance them without risking any penalties.
What’s more, researching, planning and implementing an SEO strategy is an extremely time-consuming process that can take valuable working hours away from what you do best – providing expert legal advice.
That’s why we highly recommend that you reach out to a professional SEO agency with the knowledge and experience (such as Inc Studio) to help you reach your goals in the most efficient way possible.
However, if you’re determined to improve your website’s rankings on your own, it’s important to know the core pillars of any SEO strategy.
Three Pillars of Legal SEO
As we alluded to above, there are three core components of any SEO strategy: On-Page SEO, Off-Page SEO and Technical SEO.
But what do those terms mean?
And, how can you use these SEO pillars to upgrade your website?
Below we have listed what each of these pillars include:
This is probably what first comes to mind when you think of SEO. The core principles of on-page SEO rely on optimising visible content on a specific page or website.
The most common on-page SEO practices include keyword research, tailored content creation and a strong internal web of links.
- Keyword research: Discovering high-value, industry-relevant keywords to add to your web pages is a core step of any SEO strategy. Understanding the search volume, ranking difficulty and user intent of these keywords are three core principles that can help set realistic expectations of how your optimised content should perform on SERPs.
- Content creation: Writing, publishing and optimising original content that is tailored to specific keywords can help improve the online visibility of your website. By creating high-quality original content that includes semantic keywords and other related phrases, you can demonstrate a thorough understanding of the topic relevant to your target query.
- Internal links: By linking to other, relevant pages on your website, you can improve the navigation of your website and showcase an extended knowledge of a specific industry.
The next SEO pillar is slightly more difficult to achieve results with. Mainly because you’re relying on the input, backing and validation of other relevant websites.
In a nutshell, off-page SEO is when search engines look at signals from other, external sources to determine whether your website is of high value and relevance.
- Backlinks: A backlink is an industry term for when one website links back to another. Think of a backlink as a recommendation from another website stating that your content is reliable, engaging and noteworthy. As a rule, the higher the domain authority of the linking domain, the better the quality of the backlink.
- Social media: While some search engines state that social media doesn’t affect rankings, we argue otherwise. A strong social media presence backed by a tailored social media SEO can significantly boost brand awareness and lead to a higher conversion rate on SERPs.
Last but not least is perhaps the most important aspect of SEO – the technical optimisation of your website.
Technical SEO relates to the load speed, usability and overall performance of your site.
Without proper technical SEO, a website will provide a negative user experience (UX) and ultimately perform poorly on search engines.
A metric used to measure the speed, mobile and desktop usability, and on-screen visible stability of a website is known as Core Web Vitals. A website’s Core Web Vitals score will be either ‘Poor’, ‘Needs Improvement’ or ‘Good’.
- User experience (UX): Realistically, UX is the key factor technical SEO boils down to. User experience is the process of improving a user’s journey and interaction with your website, therefore it plays an essential role in presenting a positive online reputation.
- Mobile usability: Mobile usability is a key ranking factor (especially on Google). This will come as no surprise, especially since 64% of daily Google searches come from a mobile phone. Optimising your website to achieve a ‘Good’ mobile Core Web Vitals score is a difficult but vitally important task that can improve your performance on SERPs.
- Load speed: A slow website can result in high bounce rates and poor user experience. In today’s fast-paced world, if your website takes longer than 3 seconds to load then you are likely going to lose potential clients.
- Metadata: Technically not a ranking factor, metadata is the text you see on a SERP. This will include the webpage’s title and a short meta description describing the contents of the page. See this as an opportunity to attract potential users to your website – even if Google rewrites more than 60% of descriptions.
- Alt text: Alternative text (alt text) is the written copy that appears behind an image. This can significantly improve the usability of your website by helping both bots and visually impaired users wholly understand the contents of your web page.
- Navigation: Poor site navigation causes users to get frustrated and quickly leave your site, leading to a high bounce rate. An intuitive navigation goes a long way in retaining website traffic and valuable SERP positions.
How To Improve SEO Ranking in Local Area
While not one of the three core SEO pillars listed above, local SEO is somewhat of its own pillar that fuses all three core SEO elements.
Local SEO is the process of optimising a specific web page or website to appear in geo-specific search terms.
For example, a Liverpool-based law firm may want to appear in search terms such as ‘law firm near me’ or ‘Liverpool law firm’.
To increase visibility for these searches and make sure potential clients in the area find your firm first, you should optimise for key local SEO ranking factors:
- Claim and optimise your Google My Business (GMB) listing by filling out all relevant information, including business hours and address.
- Include location-specific keywords in your website content and metadata.
- Build backlinks from local sources, such as directories and local news outlets.
- Encourage online reviews from satisfied clients, which can also improve your local SEO ranking.
By implementing these tactics and local SEO search ranking factors, you can boost your visibility in the local area and attract potential clients searching for legal services in their specific location.
Considering that 78% of consumers use search engines to find information about local businesses at least once a week, this is not an aspect of SEO to be slept on.
5 Actionable Tips to Improve Your Legal SEO Today
Now that we have gone through the core elements of SEO for law firms, let’s dive into some practical tips that you can implement today to improve your legal SEO.
These tips are specifically targeted towards beginners and aim to provide actionable steps that can make a significant impact on your law firm’s SEO ranking.
1) On-Page SEO: Create Engaging Content
This may sound obvious, but creating high-quality, relevant and engaging content is essential for SEO success.
But what is engaging content?
It is content that resonates with your target audience and satisfies their search intent. Consider the following when crafting engaging content:
- Add value to the reader by providing original, informative and educational content.
- Use long-tail keywords to target specific queries and showcase your expertise in a particular area of law.
- Utilise headers, bullet points and numbered lists to make your content easy to read and visually appealing.
- Include eye-catching visuals, such as images or videos, to break up text and add interest to your content.
- Incorporate internal links to other pages on your website to improve navigation and showcase extended knowledge of the legal industry.
- Include semantic keywords and related phrases to demonstrate expertise and relevance in your field.
- SEO tools, like SEMrush’s on-page SEO checker, can help to understand how well-optimised your content is.
2) On-Page SEO: Find and Add Relevant Keywords
You can’t create great, high-quality content without first digging and discovering the right keywords.
To find relevant keywords for your legal SEO strategy:
- Use keyword research tools, such as Google Keyword Planner or SEMrush, to identify popular and relevant search terms related to your area of law and target audience.
- Incorporate these keywords strategically throughout your content, including in headers, titles and meta descriptions – but be careful to not overdo it, as you may get a penalty!
- Utilise variations of your keywords to capture a wider range of search queries and increase your chances of appearing in relevant searches.
3) Off-Page SEO: Reach Out to Other Blogs for Backlinks
Backlinks, or links from other websites to your own, are important for off-page SEO and can increase your website’s authority and ranking in search engine results.
Remember, with backlinks the quality is far more important than the quantity.
To gain backlinks for your law firm’s website:
- Reach out to other relevant blogs or websites in the legal industry and offer to write a guest post with a link back to your site.
- Utilise your expertise and knowledge to create valuable content that other websites would be happy to share with their audience.
- Use SEO tools, such as Ahrefs’ Backlink Checker, to track your progress.
- Join online communities and forums related to the legal industry, where you can share your content and engage with others who may link back to your website.
4) Technical SEO: Improve Navigation
Technical SEO is hard, especially if you’re a beginner at Search Engine Optimisation.
Improving navigation is one technical aspect that is often overlooked but can make a significant impact on your website’s overall performance.
Poor navigation can lead to high bounce rates and hinder user experience, both of which negatively affect your SEO ranking.
To improve navigation on your legal firm’s website:
- Conduct regular audits to ensure all links are working correctly and leading to relevant pages.
- Use breadcrumbs to help users understand their current location and navigate through your website easily.
- Clearly label all navigation buttons and links, avoiding vague or misleading terms.
However, it’s worth noting that when dealing with technical SEO, what may seem like a small mistake can oftentimes be detrimental to a website’s performance.
If you feel out of your depth, consider seeking help from a professional SEO agency or consultant.
5) Hire an Experienced SEO Company
Since we’re speaking about professional SEO agencies, hiring an experienced and reputable SEO company can significantly improve your legal firm’s SEO ranking.
SEO companies have the expertise, resources and tools to help you achieve top rankings on search engine results pages.
They can also offer valuable insights and advice on how to continuously improve your strategy to stay ahead of the competition.
Key benefits of hiring an SEO company include:
- Access to advanced tools and technologies for keyword research, competitor analysis, and site audits.
- Expertise in creating data-driven SEO strategies tailored to your specific goals and target audience.
- Constant monitoring and analysis of your website’s performance to make necessary adjustments and improvements.
- Deep understanding of Google Analytics, Google Search Console and other essential SEO tools.
- Ongoing support and consultation to keep your website up-to-date with ever-changing search engine algorithms and industry trends.
Case Study: Moriarty Insurance
Leading insurance and mortgage specialists, Moriarty Insurance, approached Inc Studio looking for an updated website that would organically grow on SERPs.
After performing in-depth industry research, our specialist team designed and optimised a 50+ page website, focusing on SEO-friendly content, industry-specific keywords, structured content and a user-friendly interface.
The result? Within six months, Moriarty Insurance saw a significant increase in organic traffic and leads, with their website appearing on the first page of Google for various relevant keywords.
By implementing these simple yet effective SEO strategies, we were able to help them achieve their goal of improving their online visibility and ultimately
Don’t underestimate the power of SEO for your law firm. With the right strategies and approach, you can see tangible results that will contribute to the growth and success of your legal business.
Incorporate these tips into your SEO strategy today and watch as your website climbs the rankings and attracts high-quality leads.
Don’t Sleep on Professional Legal SEO
Ignoring or neglecting your law firm’s SEO strategy can have long-lasting consequences, hindering your online visibility and making it difficult for potential clients to find you.
By implementing these tips, regularly reviewing and updating your strategy, and seeking professional help when needed, you can improve your legal SEO ranking and attract more potential clients to your website.
Remember, SEO is not a one-time task, but an ongoing process that requires continuous effort and adaptation. So don’t sleep on it – start implementing these tips today to see long-term benefits for your law firm’s online presence.
However, if you want to prioritise what you do best and leave the SEO work to experienced professionals, consider hiring an SEO company that specialises in legal firms – such as Inc Studio.
Investing in your online presence can produce significant returns in terms of increased website traffic, leads, and ultimately, revenue for your law firm.
Stay ahead of your competition and make your mark in the digital world by prioritising SEO for your legal firm today.