Local citations can work really well in improving your law firm's online visibility. Citations are simply mentions or references of your firm's name and address on other websites.
If you have many (and accurate) citations, Google will view your law firm as an established, credible online brand. As a result, your Google local search ranking can significantly increase.
The trick is to build quality citations on authoritative and locally-relevany sources. Nowadays, there are many citation sources that offer little to no SEO value because they come from spammy websites.
By finding the right citation sources, you can enhance the overall local SEO performance for your firm. In order for you to find out if a citation source is legit, you need to ask yourself the following questions.
It is important to find out if that citation source has been used by other people within your industry. Find out if a good number of your competitors are using the same citation source. If this is the case, then it is likely a high quality citation source. Just visit the website then key in some of your competitor’s names.
You have to make sure that the website has a reliable PageRank and domain. There are a number of tools which you can download online like the PR plugin. This will help you to track the local citation source and find out if it has a good track record with Google.
The other way to note a website’s popularity is by checking whether it is usually mentioned in articles that talk about local citation sources. You are likely to come across a number of articles which give advice on local citation sources online. Find out if the source you are considering is mentioned in any of these articles across the web. This will give you more confidence in the source if it is actually recommended by other experts.
Considering this is important because most spammy sources need very little information regarding your business. Reliable citation sources for SEO will always want to include as much information regarding your business as possible. They do this because they want to enhance the relevancy of all their listings and also enhance the chances of Google crawling to your site.
It is important to focus on only local citations so that you can find your business in the relevant listing. Relevance is important as it will help you to generate leads and enhance your revenue with the help of the listings. Appearing in a UK listing if your site is based in America can be really unfortunate so make sure that the citation source is local.
There are so many local citation sources that you can get involved in. Some of the most popular ones include Yelp, City Search, Insider Pages and Foursquare. For more, check out this article on local SEO and directory resources from OIC Group.continue...
The term "Local SEO" has been familiar among webmasters and SEO analysts for many years. But ever since Google integrated its social networking site (Google+) with Google Maps and Reviews, the potential of local SEO to gain traffic and prospects has increased greatly.
It doesn't mean your listing will reach the first page of Google for whatever competitive keyword you are targeting just because you have created and verified your phone number with Google. If you have a law firm or if you are an individual lawyer practicing in a city or town in the U.S., you should have already witnessed the immense competition in your market on the internet.
It is no wonder that lawyers and attorney related keywords are some of the most highly paid keywords in Google's Adwords PPC network. What does it mean? It means large and multi-million dollar law firms are willing to spend a fortune on the internet to find new clients.
If you represent a small firm that is committed to serve your community or if you an aspiring individual who wants to build your career as a reputed lawyer, you might be intimidated by the influence of these big-box law firms on the internet.
There is a simple yet effective way to crush your competitors however humongous they are. It is called Google local SEO. There are a lot of ways to improve the rankings of your Google+ listing and make them rank in first page of Google in a matter of weeks if not days.
One of the best ways to improve the rankings of your listing in Google is to submit your business details to all the top business directories that are specific to your market. By submitting your business name, address and phone number (or "NAP" - citations that contribute to local search rankings) to these directories, you can greatly influence the ranking of your Google+ and Map listing.
The following is the list of top 5 law firm web directories for local SEO.
They have been in the business for a really long time. Launched back in 1996, the website is considered a hub for reading legal news, message boards, local directory and more. The website boasts 5 million unique visits a month. That's a lot of traffic. By submitting your business listing to this website, you cannot only improve you Google Maps listing, but can also get a lot of leads directly from the website.
Google Page Rank: 7/10
Alexa Traffic Rank (U.S.): 1,522
The site was launched back in October 2006. You can add your business listing to this website for free in a matter of seconds. If you become a paid member, you won't just get promoted to the top of the listing, but they will also give your contact details and information to people who are looking for a lawyer in your area. Google Page Rank: 5/10 Alexa Traffic Rank (U.S): 30,339 Visit eLocalLawyers.com
This is also a free service. Attorney.com is a part of LexisNexis, and Martindale-Hubbell who have been in the legal industry since 1868. The site has great reputation not only with people, but also among search engine.
Google Page Rank: 6/10
Alexa (U.S.): 47,000
Lawyers.com is a premium service and only offers paid listing. However, placing your business listing in a website like Lawyers.com can boost the rankings of your Google+ listing.
Google Page Rank: 7/10
Alexa (U.S.): 1947
You can also search for local lawyers and attorney directories specific to your district or city. Submitting to these kinds of geo-location specific directories can help you stand out from the crowd and improve your Google search ranking effectively.
Final tip: Always bear in mind that you should submit the exact business name, phone number and address to these directories that you have furnished on your Google+ profile.continue...
The search engine results page is constantly changing and expanding. For instance, have a a look at this screenshot of Google's brand new Local Search results.
Those who frequently use the Google search engine will certainly find the new look of the local search results rather unique. So it raises a question for those with a business or planning to start one: How do I place my website in the horizontal listings at the very top of the page?
If you raised that question, then read on because I am about to share with you a few local SEO tips in order to help your business grow and get better ranked in Google Local Search.
The results shown when you search for a certain business on Google, or any search engine, depend on a specific number of variables, such as directory listings, business's web presence (such as social media pages) and last but not least, having a Google+ Page.
The last of these variables, The Google+ page, is an crucial step in getting your business properly listed. While it is true most of these businesses already have an Google+ page, usually one that's already generated by Google, more often than not the Google+ page is not properly claimed and verified the Google+ page in order for it to generate its maximum potential.
So the first step into getting your business optimized in Google Local Search is to find this Google+ page of yours and in the lower right side of the screen you will see an option to claim the Google+ page as your own. Once you click it, you'll have to go through a verification system, in which they'll send a postcard to your business address in order to verify that you truly own the business you try to claim.
In the meanwhile, you should go ahead and fill your businesses Google+ page with all the needed contact information, address, additional information, links perhaps? You want to include pretty much everything a prospect would want to read.
A citation basically consists of your company's Name, address and phone number, commonly referred to as NAP. Citations are commonly found social sites and directories that contain a listing of a specific business.
Citations are extremely important, for when Google is determining its Local Search rankings, it will sort them according to the volume, quality and accuracy of a certain business's citation.
So technically, the more citations you have, the higher your business's rank will be. Its rather obvious, but you should know the two most important elements of a citation:
So keep in mind what I said when you seek websites to built your citations. Below I have compiled a list of some of the most trusted and influential sources for citations:
Note that you should always keep on eye on the competitors. I recommend you thoroughly inspect the search engine result page and get an idea on which websites and directories your business should be on.continue...
Local SEO uses a different techniques compared to traditional forms of SEO. Most local SEO strategies in 2013 focused on making sure a business or firm appeared on the top local directories such as Yelp, Yahoo and Google+. Although it is important to get listed on the local directories, more effort is needed to ensure your firm is able to contend in competive local marketplace of legal services.
Change your perception of local SEO and ensure your law firm gets solid results. Check out these three angles in which view your 2014 local SEO strategy.
Most law firms understand how important it is for them to have online presence on social media, however not all firms take advantage of the available audience. Some think so long as they have a presence on social media, and placed a link back to their site, their local SEO efforts have been accomplished.
You need to do more to direct traffic to your site. You need to engage your audience on social media to make it count. So how can this be done?
There is a correlation between the number of Facebook or Twitter followers with the search engine rankings. So do not neglect social media in your local SEO plan for 2014.
Search engine rankings are normally affected by the number and quality of external links that point to certain websites. You should start building and earning links to your website once it has been well established on the local business directories.
This allows you to get in touch with other professionals allowing them to make guest blog posts on your website. You need to cultivate such relationships since they will help you in future marketing. The new members also get listed in the local chamber website, so invest in this membership if it makes sense for your budget and marketing efforts.
You need to provide great content to gain good audiences. When people realize that you actually give them valuable information, you are likely to get more links back to your website. You need to brand yourself as far as a certain niche is concerned. Make sure that people get the sense that you know your stuff. Use articles and videos to pass information. These are the different ways you can use to pass on content for SEO Peoria IL.
By now you should be aware of the phrase "content is king". This has been true over the years but this is gradually changing. The focus has shifted from providing content that is full of keywords to providing content that is relevant to a particular audience. In short, you need to know the needs of your target audience then provide them with content they can identify with.
Assess your target audience and find out from them about the problems and issues they are facing.- Ask yourself how you can go about helping them based on the resources available to you.- Which mode of communication would be most effective for your audience?- Look at the different businesses and find out which ones are likely to thrive on social media and Google searches. You will notice that the most successful businesses are the ones which have great blogs, videos, podcasts and graphics being used to carry out marketing
Assess your organization's marketing plan so as to decide how much time or money you are willing to allocate to it. Come up with fresh ideas that shift focus to creating online marketing strategies for content. You should also do your best to ensure that you establish social media presence that is legitimate. As hard as some of these concepts may seem, at the end of the day, they are likely to have a positive influence on the local SEO especially in 2014.continue...
Local SEO for law firms and legal professionals is a lot different than optimizing a site for the entire world wide web. In short, the Google local search results is influenced by different factors than the results shown for general, non-geographically relevant searches.
There are a lot of things which a law firm need to follow for making their website optimal for local search. Below we share advanced SEO tips which should be utilized by local law firms that want to have higher rankings in the local search results.
Local business schema markup is HTML markup in which standardizes the information related to a local business for all the big three search engines. Google, Bing and Yahoo have come together to create this schema markup so that businesses can provide all the related information in a particular set of code and the search engine crawlers can crawl their website and gather this information to display in their Web results.
For example, in Google local search results, the opening hours and closing hours of a local business are clearly available. These timings are picked up by search engine spiders from the data wrapped in Local Business Schema Markup. Having the required data in a structured way on the web page provides information to search engines about your business and the more information you provide, the more relevant search results are going to be. Having proper data will not only result in higher rankings but also higher click throughs on the search results page to your website.
For general queries on the search engines, back links from high page rank websites matter a lot. In the world of local SEO, the citations play an equally important role.
In the case of local SEO one should keep regularly auditing their citations. The more authentic their citations are, the better for the website in local SEO. If there are many variations of your local citations out there on the web, it will confuse the search engines and your web rankings will suffer.
To properly audit your local citations, you'll need to crawl the scan with multiple variations of your business name, your phone number, your business address. Once you identify the various different versions, you should reach out to the websites which host these variations and request them for corrections at the end.
For local SEO, it is important to have links from locally-relevant sites sites. For example, if you are trying to rank for locksmiths in New York City, then back links from related local sites will help you a lot in search engine rankings as compared to backlink from a Los Angeles based business.
Relevancy has become very important these days in Google's current search engine ranking algorithm. The more relevant links pointing to your website, the higher your rank is going to be in the search results. Therefore, your backlink building should be geared toward locally relevant sites.
Do you know anyone who is not out there on one of the many social networks? Chances are you do not know anyone who is not there on either Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. The world is becoming more and more social each day.
It is important for a business to build up the social presence. Social presence does not solely mean creating a Facebook page or having an instagram account or having a Twitter profile. A business for effective social networking should be active on their social media accounts.
They should interact with their clients, listen to their needs and solve their problems. Also, off-line networking is as important as online social networking. Businesses should participate in off-line conferences and trade shows. These off-line conferences and trade shows often result in a very relevant back links and citations for your business online.
From a local SEO perspective, social media adds an extra layer of credibility to your company. The more people you have in your social circles (beyond Google+ circles,) the more legitimacy search engines see in your business. Local Peoria SEO company, Online Innovative Creations does a great job at this. This Peoria SEO company has a deep social media audience and uses this audience to share quality content and inbound traffic naturally.
Search engines are always looking for fresh content. In the online world, a business needs to constantly produce and publish fresh and interesting content targeted at their customer base. Search engine algorithms give more weightage to fresh and interesting content and consequently websites which produce content on a regular basis end up higher in the search engine rankings. Therefore, producing and publishing content on a regular basis is very important for gaining and maintaining higher search engine rankings.continue...
SEO professionals are constantly in search of new tools, insights and methods that will assist them in their ultimate goal of improved results for clients. What if you had the opportunity to learn directly from the source? Well that day has come. Google has shared very key insights that will greatly assist local SEO professionals in their quests.
Especially since the internet is more often than not used to verify the existence of a business (essentially establishing a trust between business and customer), it is imperative that SEO marketers know that true keys to success. With the wrong amount of marketing, a word of mouth sale can result in a sale for a competitor.
According to various insightful Google professionals, there are a number of common themes that should be followed for better local SEO, and they are:
Google has released special Webmaster tools for mobile accessibility due to the importance that it plays with SEO and especially in the local Traverse City SEO market where local small business thrives.
These tools allows you valuable insights for the sole purpose of enhancing the consumer’s experience while unveiling pertinent insights to you. Learn of the presence of Flash content, viewports, font styles and sizes, where clickable elements are placed and more. The utilization of this information should be standard procedure right alongside planning and standard analytics.continue...
As savvy marketer, by now you should know the importance of finding and building citations for local SEO (ranking higher in the Google local listings.)
Because citation generation is a lot of work, it's important to use the right resources and guidance. This post is dedicated to sharing the best resources to pinpoint citation building opportunities and advance your local SEO efforts to the next level.
1. Start by checking your current citations via www.GetListed.com Use this listing as a starting point. Verify the information that has already been cited to ensure that it is accurate before moving forward.
2. Clean up your existing citations first. Do this before moving forward to list your business on any further sites. Citations that are incorrect offer no benefit to you. Correcting the information will begin to raise your rankings almost immediately. Incorrect citations are often the reason behind why people may not find you via local search engines, which decreases your rankings.
3. Comply with Google Webmaster Guidelines. If you have not yet made yourself familiar with them, do so now at Support.Google.com.
4. Use Google Mapmaker in order to determine if there are multiple citations on the same sites.
5. Prepare your company’s information in a template. The use of a template will ensure consistency amongst citations and it will also guarantee that no information will be accidently omitted. Include the following elements, if applicable.
6. Conduct a NAP (Name, address and phone number) search on Google and ensure that your NAP information is accurate. You can also use Yext.com and the free scan they offer.
7. Change your mindset. Instead of trying to have a citation everywhere, ensure that your citations are relevant to your industry and target audience.
Building and creating citations can be quite time consuming, but the benefits are well worth the time. You do have the option to outsource the work to a credible SEO marketing company should you desire. Simply ensure that you properly vet companies to ensure that compliance are met alongside needs.
When embarking upon this venture for yourself, it is imperative to be extremely organized and use a best practices SEO guide. Utilized the cloud services of Google documents for the storage and sharing of your spreadsheet that will keep track of your citations (and corrections).continue...
Local SEO audits are highly valuable for law firms, not only to expose the weaknesses of a website, but also to identify any opportunities for potential improvements to boost keyword rankings. Investing in a local SEO audit is a quick and effective way to evaluate the optimization of your webpages and plays the role of the very first step of building a SEO-friendly website that can help promote your brand and attract the target visitors.
Below are some of the most significant components that you can expect from a professional and comprehensive local SEO audit.
A local SEO audit of your law firm's website will study the on-page optimization and its effectiveness, which is all about the quality of content, internal linking, proper use of keywords and several other factors.
The on-site SEO component of the local SEO audit should also including assessing your webpages for identifying whether it uses unique and relevant meta descriptions, title tags, meta keywords and SEO-friendly URLs as these attributes are considered by Google to determine the search engine ranking and relevancy of your web pages for targeted queries. It also checks whether you have included your contact information on the homepage and the concerning pages.
In order to improve the rankings and authority, you need to build or earn backlinks to your law firm's website. Backlinks come from various web sources including blogs, videos, directories, social media profiles etc. But, those links must be of high quality as poor quality backlinks can lead to deindexing from Google.
An efficient SEO audit lets you know the flaws and strengths of the backlinks to your business website. Although some local SEO providers do not scan and audit the backlink profile during a local SEO, the most proficient local SEO companies will take the time to review this vital aspect of your firm's SEO efforts.
A local SEO audit lets you find out your law firms listings on the web and also what they say about you. It may include checking out top local directories for mentions (or "citations") of your business. You can see what information they carry about your law firm including your important NAP data (Name, Address, Phone number), business description, photos, reviews and star ratings.
According to local SEO company, Traverse City Top of Mind, a citation audit for Google local SEO is equally as vital as backlink audit for organic SEO. You can learn more about this important differentiation by reading the 2015 SEO guide at Top of Mind.
Social media reports of an local SEO audit helps to get a clear picture of your social status on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn or Foursquare. It ensures whether you are using these essential tools to spread the word about your business and engage with your customers as well as the extent to which your customers liking and appreciating your business. Social media is not only a major marketing tool, but it also affects the SEO. An audit checks the factors that influence your website's trust such as hidden text, malware, keywords stuffing and cloaking. You can understand how you can get more social and expand the social-web presence of your business better.
The way a site is ranked in the algorithms of search engines is highly influenced by the off-Page SEO factors. Conducting a local SEO audit helps to address all the questions regarding the popularity, authority and the activity of your business website. It also examines the ratings of your website by several reputable sites including Domain Authority, Alexa and Page Authority. These factors explain the affluence of the website or your law firm.continue...
This isn’t a phenomenon reserved for large corporations or celebrities. With huge expansion of social media platform, having your law firm's profile on websites such as Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, Pintrest, Instagram, and many others is simply no longer an option.
It has now become an important part of your overall branding efforts and achieving more visibility and a wider brand recognition, which is so important to ongoing viability of your law firm web marketing plan. However, these social media platforms can also help you achieve many other vital things as well, including SEO (more on that below.)
For small and medium companies, social media can surely help you establish long-term relationship with customers. With social media, you get a perfect and cost-effective way to communicate with your customers in a way which was never feasible before.
It also provides you with a very inexpensive, and near instant way to keep your target audience abreast of new products, social events, special sales and more. It also provides more exposure to your business and provides a way for your customers to become more acquainted with it. Many studies in the past have shown that customers spend considerable time researching a company online before they every decide to buy from them.
The purpose of SEO is quite different from social media. The main focus of SEO is to boost website ranking on big search engines which increases online visibility and leads to more traffic to the website and ultimately create more sales.
For small companies, local SEO has much more significance than non-local SEO as most of their customers are comprise of those who reside in and around the place where the business’s physical location is. This means that SEO techniques used by local businesses must be focuses on this particular target audience.
While SEO and social media are mentioned in tandem, the reality is that these two terms refer to two separate functions. However, the reason whey they’re mentioned together is that there are multiple overlaps between the two.
The reason why many SEO agencies recommend small and medium businesses to enhance their social media presence is because it helps in enhancing their online visibility and search engine rankings. Many SEO experts believe that Google and many other search engines take into account how popular your social media presence is in order to ascertain how important your site is and where it should rank on tier result pages.
The theory proposed by these Traverse City SEO experts is that businesses with more Facebook likes, larger 1’s on Google, or larger Twitter following are more favored by search engines because they’re viewed as more popular with the visitors and therefore provide a more valuable information.
These experts take it a step further by stating that Google and many other search engines also scan for online mentions on different social media sites, known as co-citations. The more co-citations or mentions a company has, the better they can on various search engine results, including local search engines. This surely makes having a rock solid social media presence even more important to small businesses than every before.continue...
The process of search engine optimization can turn into a nightmare for attorneys or law firms if they aren't using the right tools. And with the vast array of local SEO tools available out there, it's hard to know which ones are intuitive, useful and reliable.
But in all this, one thing still remains -- that law firms must take advantage of clients who search for their services online. This calls for utilizing value-driven SEO tools that provide good ROI.
Moz Local is free to use, however, if a user wants to take advantage of the enhanced listing features, the cost is a low $49 per year. This subscription service was originally known as GetListed until Moz acquired it.
Today, it's Moz Local. And it's much more than just a standard citation finder tool. It's well-organized local SEO solution that offers valuable metrics like showing you a listing score, profile completion percentage of major search engines, what others are saying about a certain company (including your own), as well as duplicate content.
And the good thing is that Moz Local is aimed at enhancing SEO aspects of local businesses across the United States, particularly attorneys.
Negative reviews can destroy a business that has taken years to build. However, with this powerful review generation tool, Give 5 Stars, law firms can better manage their reviews more effectively as every review is collected and placed under one roof, whether positive or negative.
Give 5 Stars gives businesses a tool where they can ask for customer feedback while also monitoring what others are saying online.
What's more, attorneys can also use it to embed testimonials in their sites, and this feature supports Google-friendly search snippets which is good for SEO purposes anyway. Using the basic plan is free. However, upgrades will start at $29.
Yext is a citation finder tool which also provides an opportunity to list law firms on various business listing sites. Besides tracking reviews online, Yext also provides a feature that lets a business owner analyze their local searches so they can know how they are performing locally.
Adding company blogs or websites into popular and relevant business listing sites is a good thing because it helps with SEO. However, it's a process that many business don't take advantage of because they either lack manpower, or time to do so. If your law firm doesn't have time to manually list the firm's website in these listings, Yext may be the appropriate time-saver for this task.
Google Alerts is an extremely useful tool that Google is offering for free. It helps with monitoring every mention of company brand on the web. Google Alerts will give results depending on the keywords that matter to you.
Law firms need to know where they rank in different cities they serve. Whitespark does all the local and organic search tracking to give business owners a clue as to how and where they are ranking for certain keywords. It works with all major search engines to monitor local packs, maps, as well as organic search results.
Local ranking is highly accurate and targeted. In other words, the results you see are what a searcher sited in front of a computer looked for. So if you want to understand your competitors, Whitespark is a must-have SEO tool for law firms.
There are several other SEO resources that can help law firms get more leads their way. Most free tools have their premium versions which legal professionals can take advantage of to work with more insightful data. At the end of the day, these firms should get the highest return on investment.continue...
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