Law Firm Web Marketing

    

8 Local Law Firm Web Marketing Tips

Local Law Firm Web Marketing TipsIf you are looking for local web marketing tips that could be beneficial to your law firm or legal practice, there are numerous channels and considerations that you could explore. Some of these tips are more broad-based and on a grander scale, whereas other tips are much intricate and involve specific aspects of a website.

Here are 8 tips that could be the most useful for law firm web marketing:

1. Establish goals for your firm. Owning a website is something most businesses will have, but you should know exactly what its ultimate purpose is. A good approach to this is start with very focused goals and expand out it as you start realizing success in the initial goal(s). In addition to this, you should figure out a way to measure the success of achieving your goals. For SEO or Internet marketing, this might depend on website traffic data.

2. Evaluate the content of your website. Having a website is meaningless if your content is not relevant, unique, and of value. Take some time to review your web copy from the perspective of your target audience. Is the content of your website useful to your readers? Do you use legal jargon that might confuse readers? How well optimized is the content for SEO? Some of theses question might help you find weaknesses and opportunities on your website.

3. Evaluate the title tag of your website. When you open your website on a browser, what does the top of the browser window say? The title tag is supposed to describe your website uniquely. It should contain the keywords that you would like to be associated with the content of the page. If you are running a local business, the title tag should contain local search keywords that would make it easier for local customers to find your website.

4. Track and analyze your web traffic. You cannot improve on your website if you cannot measure its success. By incorporating analytics in the running of your website, you get a chance to reap useful data such as where most of your web traffic comes from, the amount of time they spend on your website as well as what they look for on your website. A great tool to use for this is Google analytics. Here you can polish up your web marketing efforts by learning from valuable data and insights.

5. Make use of local business directories. The greatest advantage of these directories is that they are free. Listing your website in these directories will increase your web traffic, which in turn could boost the sales of your business. Some of the free directories you could enlist with include Google Local Business Center, Yellowpages.com, Yahoo! Local and more. These directories can really help boost your local small business SEO efforts.

6. Analyze your competition. You can do this by paying a visit to their websites to see how theirs are set up. You could also conduct searches related to your keywords to see who else is providing the services that you are. By keeping tabs on your competition, you get to learn what you are doing different as well as get tips from their marketing strategies.

7. Start a blog. All law firms can gain a lot by having a blog. This gives you a platform to provide pertinent information in your niche, which leads to people wanting to learn more about your goods or services. Not only can a blog help inbound traffic to your website (via SEO and social media,) but blogging helps to establish your image as credible and knowledgeable expert in your field.

8. Post videos online. Multimedia can go a long way in benefitting your business. Make use of websites such as YouTube and MetaCafe to increase your web traffic. Optimizing videos for SEO can also have a huge benefit to your local law firm web marketing efforts.

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5 Internet Marketing Tips for Lawyers and Law Firms

Some years back, it was thought that there was no need for professionals such as attorneys, lawyers, accountants and so on. Today, things have changed. All these professionals have discovered the power of Internet marketing and more so Internet marketing. Here are some hot Internet marketing tips that you can use to market your law firm on the web:

Engage with social media

When the first few social media networks came into being, people started realizing how well they can network. Soon business enterprises followed suit. Here is a good platform through which law firms can make their presence felt. Look for select sites and create profiles. Ask people to like or link themselves to your page. In addition, join groups that are affiliated to lawyers. Make a point of adding comments there on a regular basis. For every comment you make, leave a link that can guide someone to your website.

Invest in Local SEO

Your firm could be having an award winning website where you have put photos and used good graphics. However, if you're not driving traffic to your website, it's reaching its fullest potential and purpose. If you want to attract more people to visit your site, you have to optimize it. Local SEO can be done by hiring professional firms or in-house. Local SEO involves posting well written articles covering different legal issues or services offered by your firm. In these articles, use keywords. Search for words that people browsing the web keep using when looking for law firms.

Have a Blog (or Content Marketing Portal)

Unlike websites, blogs have an advantage in that they are regularly updated. Get into the habit of writing blogs. You can also hire article writers to provide you with quality articles for this purpose. Provide topics or keywords that can be incorporated on each blog. As an attorney, you are well aware of legal areas that people seek for most. It could be divorce, personal injury, inheritance and so on. At the end of each blog, have the writer post a link. Through this link, anyone who reads your blog can be directed to the main site. Here, they will get more information about your firm.

Consider Legal Directories

Make sure you submit your website links to online directories. In addition to the Internet marketing benefits, directories are also ideal for local SEO and search marketing. To be more specific, search for legal directories only as this is where the bulk of your potential clients are likely to be found. Surprisingly, most of these directories do not charge any fees for getting listed.

See What Competitors Are Doing

It is wise to know what your competitors are doing. Get some insights into what other firms are up to. Select a few website firms that are ranked among the top in the industry. Observe the way they have put content and the kind of keywords used. Take note of the way the sites have used SEO techniques and how they have worked for them. Interested in receiving an Internet marketing audit? Visit our services page to learn more about how our experts can help you with your law firm web marketing campaign.

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Discovering the Optimal Citation Sources for Local SEO

Citations Local SEOLocal 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.

Is this citation source popular in your industry?

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.

Have you checked the PageRank and history of the domain?

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.

Is the site popular in the web?

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.

What kind of information is needed by the source to include your business?

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. 

Are the citation sources indeed local?

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.

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Top 5 Law Firm Web Directories to Improve Your Google Local Search Rankings

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.

Gain a Competitive Edge with Google Local SEO

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.

Top Directories for Local Law Firm SEO

The following is the list of top 5 law firm web directories for local SEO.

1. FindLaw.com

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

Visit FindLaw.com

2. eLocalLawyers.com

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

3. Attorneys.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

Visit Attorneys.com

4. Lawyers.com

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

Visit Lawyers.com

5. Local law firm directories in your district and town

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.

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3 of the Most Trusted and Authoritative Directories for Organic SEO

organic seo, backlinks, directoriesFinding good sources for backlinks is an integral aspect to the organic SEO process. In order for a website to be competitive in organic search, quality backlinks are a must.

Quality is critical in this aspect of SEO, making the process of building backlinks a meticulous task. In short, there are various limitations and risks involved, such as being penalized by Google for unnatural backlinks pointing to a site.

So how does overcome these hurdles to create a successful organic SEO campaign? A classic solution is to utilize trusted and authoritative directories. Although many directories have lost their SEO value, there are still several out there that provide adequate link juice for SEO.

Below are three of quality directories that can help supplement your organic SEO strategy.

The Elib.org International Directory

Elib.org is a high authority directory that offers a wealth of categories for various industries and markets. This helps to ensure that the backlinks coming from a listing are as relevant as possible.

Elib.org offers three types of directory submissions: basic, express, and sponsored. Each require payment at different price points, however the more premium the choice the great value to be had for organic SEO.

The "sponsored" submission offers the greatest SEO-impact because you can include up to five backlinks in a listing profile. Just be sure to blend the anchor text of any additional backlinks to ensure they appear natural (and not over-optimized.)

The Yahoo! Directory

The Yahoo! Directory listings are recognized for top-shelf backlinks. In addition to Google, the Yahoo! Directory can significantly aid keyword rankings in Bing and Yahoo! search engines.

The downside to this directory is that the investment is not cheap. The annual fee is hefty $299, but if your organic SEO budget allows, then this solid directory is definitely opt for this one.

The DMOZ Directory

The DMOZ directory has a track record for aiding organic SEO projects of all types. It's a well-known directory that's supported by expertise that most other directories fail to offer. As an authoritative backlink sources with a PageRank of 7, DMOZ.org is a must-pursue for all organic SEO experts in the profession, (not to mention that it's completely free.)

When you visit DMOZ.org, simply find the category in which your website best falls under. Then, near the top right of the page, click the "Suggest URL" link to submitted the domain of interest. The timeline is questionable, but if the site is legit and completely matches that of the chosen category, it should be a matter of weeks before you get a nice backlink to your website.

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Top Link Building Resources for Law Firm SEO

One of the most important factors in increasing your website ranking is link building. Just like any other businesses involved in SEO, law firms need to first understand what link building is if they are to build high quality links and improve their search engine rankings.

Simply put, link building is a process that attempts to increase the number of incoming or inbound links to a website. Major search engines like Google normally judge the popularity and authority of a website by looking at the kind of links pointing to a given website. This essentially means that if a law firm website has high quality links pointing to it, then it will more prone to be ranked high in the search results.

However, it is crucial to remember that the process of link building has evolved with time. The algorithm changes implemented by search engines like Google ensure that people cannot manipulate links using black hat or illegal methods to rank high in the SERPS.

Quality Link Building Ideas for Law Firm SEO

If you're looking for some fresh ideas to help jump start the link building component to your law firm SEO strategy, below we offer some insights as to how you can begin.

Create high quality content

Those who said quality content is king were dead spot on. One of the easiest ways of acquiring high quality links is by way of creating high quality content on your website. If you create high quality content or articles that are lengthy and in-depth, then people are likely going to share this content on social networking sites. This can earn high quality backlinks as a result. Once people spot you as an authority in a given legal practice, then they will likely link back to your site; hence giving you the link juice you need to rank higher in the SERPS.

Guest blogging

Creating high quality content then posting on another website related to your industry is one of the best ways of creating high quality back links. To ensure you garner high quality inbound links, it is pertinent to guest blog or post your articles in high authority websites in your industry. Besides garnering quality links, you will markedly improve your brand visibility, increase website traffic and improve your author rank.

Infographics

Infographics are visually appealing data representation tools which marketers use to showcase facts, figures and statistics on a website. Infographics are usually very appealing and easy to comprehend thus are a darling of many people. The fact that infographics are loved by many people means that they are also easily shareable. Web marketers build links by including their website links in all the info graphics they create, ensuring that when they are shared quality backlinks are garnered.

Local chamber of commerce membership

Another potent way of building links is to list your website in your local chamber of commerce. Generally, most local chambers of commerce websites are highly ranked because they are not only visited by many locals but are also a hub of quality information regarding business in a given locality. Therefore, it is imperative to ensure that your website links are included in the local chamber of commerce website if you want to rank favorably in the search engine results.

Local and industry specific directories

Lastly, another way of garnering high quality links is to include your website URL in local and industry specific directories. Most search engines nowadays give local directories a lot of prominence when ranking sites in the search results. Some of the most popular directories are LexisNexis and Martindale.

Moving forward, the process of link building requires careful assessment and planning; considering the fact that most of the methods used before are now considered spammy if not black hat. To safely build quality links that will not attract the penalty or the wrath of Google, law firms have to employ the following strategies.

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3 Non-Legal-Specific Directories to Acquire New Leads & Cases

Legal DirectoriesBeing active on various web directories, or directory-like social sites, can be time consuming and thus shrugged-off by many lawyers and legal professional. But many of these experts fail to realize that their ideal client or case are looking for their legal services on sites other than Lex Mundi, Find Law, or Martindale.

In this article, we share three directories that are not specific to the legal profession, but are great places to help you acquire new clients and solid cases.

Google Plus

We'll start with the biggest and most-important directory-like social site, Google Plus. Consider your Google Plus (or Google Places) page your second website. Here it's critical to earn positive reviews, and many of them. It's also important to populate and optimize your Google Plus page for maximum local SEO potential.

A lot of Google searchers looking for your legal specialties can end up on your practice's Google Plus page. Is therefore important that's well establish for optimal conversions. You can even optimize your Google Plus page ranking in Google search by leveraging local SEO strategies, such as citation generation, or invest in a Google Places optimization service with trusted company.

Yelp

Yelp is another huge directory that's also well associated with Google, as well as being a socially-oriented directory that focuses on sharing reviews. Yelp is almost always on page one of Google search for localized keyword searches, so it only makes sense for SEO to have a sufficient profile listing. Again, reviews are huge, so reach out and get as many 5-star reviews as possible.

Also on Yelp, you can communicate with people and reply to their reviews. Having an active presence on this non-legal directory can not only help inbound potential clients to your business, but also helps with reputation management and building credibility in your location and practice area.

You Local Chamber

Being a member of local chamber of commerce can help your practice in more ways then one. Not only does this help to build trust and credibility, but most chamber sites have directories in which members get their own profile page. These dedicated member pages can be a major asset for local SEO and earning a powerful, locally-specific backlink to your website. Further, chamber sites are haven for people looking for legit local businesses and professionals to help them with their needs.

We hope these non-legal directories will be of use for your law firm web marketing strategy. Let us know what you think, or if you have any questions in the comments section below.

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Get a Local SEO Audit to Jump-Start Your Firm's 2015 Marketing Plan

Local SEO auditLocal 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.

On-Site SEO Analysis

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.

Backlink Profile Audit

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.

Local Directory Listing Audit

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 Report

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.

Off-Page Ranking Factors

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.

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Big-Picture SEO: Building Brands & Cultivating Audiences

Digital marketing and SEO have become a major part of the law firm web marketing world in the past ten years. Despite this, the fundamentals of branding are still vital for law firms to thrive on the web.

Branding gives support to online marketing efforts. Brand names boost online marketing by driving direct marketing, it is included directly in the algorithm by Google and draws links better than non-branded content. This is mainly achieved by keeping ones branding efforts consistent and up to date.

Bulding a Brand Leads to Generating Traffic

Building ones brand leads to the second largest traffic driver that is direct traffic. Many users come to ones website via social media channels, or through other websites that one has linked to one’s site.

There are those who type in the actual URL of one’s website. When business owners add directory listings, blog posts and social content to their brand identity and values they help suffers remember their name and this boosts direct traffic.

For instance when one is scrolling through their Facebook page and see a product that they may need some day for five to six times then the product stands a chance of being memorable. Most probably when one will need the product they will type in the name of the product in Google search. At times one will type in the first few letter of the product or the URL and Google will direct you to the website.

According to David Ogilvy, a brand is the intangible sum of a products attribute. The attributes have to be unique to attract the desired consumer market. Every consumer has what they value. There are those that value price over quality while other value quality over price. Companies that have a brand name enjoy direct hits from consumer searches in the internet.

Cultivating an Audience

Consumers understand a brand through its consistent messaging while Google work with its algorithm to understand what a brand offers and to whom. When people search for a certain term it attracts the search engines attention. The “follow” links that appear give a strong indication of authority in Google searches.

Online and offline marketing can work hand in hand to build a brand and traffic. Commercials, trade shows and sponsorship are an offline way of branding efforts. Online mentions of a company such as through social media drive people visit the site.

Where SEO Meets Branding

A website that has clear and meaningful branding and good SEO practices will do best than one that does not have these characteristics. Google gives more link juice to companies that have invested in their branding. Acquiring links is a rigorous exercise that takes up time and money. It also requires creativity to earn an authentic link for one’s page.

A study has shown that one looking for a good link one needs to choose companies with a recognizable brand name that is recognizable. Branding is simply building a business identity. It is a way of defining ones business to the internal and external audiences. When building a business brand ensure you know what your purpose of the business. Web marketing helps to better ones online brand presence this is by understanding what sets your brand aside.

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