Online advertising in the legal profession has become extremely competitive, particularly in local Pay Per Click (PPC) and Google Places listings. Attorneys are savvy marketers, and many will admit that Google search is the new Yellow Pages. As a result, many law firms are optimizing their websites, and their Internet marketing efforts, to obtain the most advertising exposure possible from local, in-market searchers.
For a law firm looking to optimize their web presence, whether through SEO or PPC, it is important to understand the difference between the variety of Google's ad placements and listings. At the Law Firm Web Marketing Blog, we break-down three primary mediums that help attain better local search visibility, including some best-practices tips for optimization.
The Google Places listings in the search results have become very prominent as well as popular. Aside from having a nice map for users to view, what is also unique about Google Places listings is the page itself. A Place page is a separate entity to a firm's website. And the Place page is core contributor to better local listings in the Google Places results.
Optimizing a Place page for better local results requires a unique approach. Similar to organic search engine optimization (or natural SEO), the popularity of the page has major influence as to how well a Google Places page ranks. Although popularity is directly uncontrollable, there are a few techniques to enhance a Place page that can promote more traffic.
Bidding for top keyword exposure using local PPC advertising is no secret to lawyers. However only few firms have discovered the power behind Google AdWords Express Ads.
You may be familiar these enhanced Google ads - they have a blue pin on search results map (instead of red), and although they are paid ads, they are associated with Google Places pages. This is a relatively new feature in Google AdWords that offers an easy way to stand out in the local search results. For lawyers, using Google AdWords Express Ads could mean the difference between getting a good case, and letting it slip to a competitor.
The process to create a Google AdWords Express Ad is simple. The entire set-up is all from the edit mode of your Place page. The ad creation process is very simple. To learn more, visit http://www.google.com/support/places/bin/answer.py?answer=1040967
Although these might look similar to Google Places listings, the local search results as shown below are strictly organic listings.
These local results are called "Enhanced Google Listings" because they offer more information in the description of the ad. In addition to the Meta description, enhanced Google listings also display an address which is associated with the Google results map. Improving your results in these listings requires organic search engine optimization techniques.
Realizing better search engine exposure from local, in-market users can be achieved. Out-ranking your competitors may take diligence, but it can be done with the right approach and the right combination of geo-local SEO, PPC, and Google Places optimization.
On the premise that each law firm is unique, Consultwebs.com's Marketing Director, Tanner Jones says that the same principle should apply for law firm web marketing campaigns.
This is why Consultwebs.com Inc. offers law firms the option to choose which online marketing strategies and related products and services they deem ideal for their unique goals and budget.
Tanner Jones describes this creative strategy as an “a la carte” approach to law firm online marketing. Because there are a large variety of methods used for online advertising, the ability to pick out what their law firm needs ultimately makes it more personalized and cost effective.
Offering a great deal of flexibility, lawyers can exactly pick out specific strategies that will address their needs as they see it. Jones simplifies it by explaining that "one firm may only want to focus on enhancing its social media marketing, while another firm may only want to redesign its website and improve its content". The law firm internet marketing agency, Consultwebs.com Inc. offers a wide range of web marketing strategies to choose from. Some of the more popular include:
Referring to this particular development, Tanner Jones says, "We work with law firms to pinpoint their goals and to select the best products and services that will meet those goals while staying at a cost that's within their reach."continue...
Whether through Pay Per Click advertising or Organic SEO, the legal profession is one arena that has taken full advantage of Internet marketing opportunities - however only a few firms are taking advantage of the benefits of Google AdWords Express.
Google AdWords Express is an automated version of AdWords and is designed to make Internet advertising easier for locally-focused small businesses. Simplified to match the needs of entrepreneurs with limited online advertising experience, AdWords Express offers a number of advantageous. The core benefits are that it costs less than a dollar per click and can substantially increase local search visibility for a website.
Buts it’s not just simplicity that small businesses are appreciating in Google AdWords Express. In this platform, local businesses can incorporate their Pay Per Click ads and Google Places page. These add-ons can help a website's search listing stand out even more, which is especially valuable for law firms targeting keywords in competitive practice areas. Instead of representing one of the many red pins in the local Google Map results, a firm could stand out from the crowd with blue pin.
Offering the utmost simplicity from ad creation to measurement of results, AdWords Express provides everything a local business needs to start advertising online.
The legal profession is a highly competitive, even from a local approach. Google's AdWords Express offers an attractive option to maximize a law firm’s web presence with minimal costs and excellent results.
Formerly known as Google Boost, AdWords Express made $28 billion for Google in ad revenues for 2010. In the first two quarters of 2011 it generated $32 billion, declare it a success in the Google books.
With users coming from all across America, it initially targeted just two markets; small businesses like local law firms and those that do not have the time or money to take a larger leap in search engine marketing. The potential that AdWords Express offers to local law firms is immense, particularly for those with limited or non-existent experience in online marketing. Even for those with online marketing program, Google AdWords Express ads can be a great enhancement.continue...
The web is now buzzing with various exciting opportunities that offer ways to increase your revenues though Local SEO (Search Engine Optimization.) With the fast penetration of the Internet in every nook and corner of the U.S., now searches for legal representation and counsel are happening from many local areas.
As per the latest reports of Google, about 8.3 million searches are now being done for “lawyers” on search engines alone. Therefore, local Internet marketing for lawyers offers many opportunities to capture relevant searches that could result in a huge case.
Local online marketing for lawyers is much more cost-effective than a phone book, television, or radio advertisement. These channels offer limited information and ad exposure. But in case of website marketing, you can obtain top search engine visibility from your prospects and target customers. The cost of impressions for a PPC ad or organic search placement is significantly less than a print ad. And when users hop on Google to find a "personal injury lawyer in Dallas, TX," that's just what they want.
Many lawyers still prefer newspapers, TV, law directories and similar advertising mediums. Though few attorneys may have got some success with these venues, but the real question here is that how much returns they are getting on their investment. In most of the cases, search engine optimization campaigns are highly cost effective and can generate long lasting results. While newspaper ads or direct mail campaigns are recycled or thrown as waste, local website marketing for lawyers continues to generate quality leads for them. Now the lasting effect of this kind of marketing means that your marketing budget is being well utilized and generates more revenue for you. Maximum leads with less money, as well as quality of leads, make local Internet marketing for lawyers a clear choice where they should spend their marketing dollars.
As we discussed above, SEO can help you in getting higher rankings on major search engines resulting in higher traffic to your site and more business. Companies providing local SEO services for lawyers actually work for maximizing their online exposure. All major search engines such as Google, MSN/Yahoo and Bing now show results depending upon the location of the user. Therefore, if your site is optimized for local SEO, you can gain better ad exposure from in-market users.
A good local SEO company will target keywords of local/geographic relevance combined with practice areas keywords (for example, "Atlanta criminal defense attorney".) This can rank the site of an Atlanta-based attorney on the top of search engine result pages for queries that relate to criminal defense. They will choose the keywords that are used by relevant clients for searching lawyers in their area.
Aside from this, providers of local SEO services also use other Internet marketing techniques, such as manual directory submission, PPC marketing campaigns, article and blog submission with links to your site, and even social media marketing. These services are starting to replace traditional forms of marketing and serving ideal for law firm web marketing.continue...
Mobile marketing is gaining immense popularity, and in almost any professional context. Mobile marketing for lawyers and law firms is projected to be one of the most efficient channels for branding and advertising, especially for those legal professionals who handle plaintiff-consumer cases.
However, if carried out inaccurately, mobile marketing could offer minimum returns and could even pose detrimental risks if not monitored correctly. Lawyers in particular will want to focus on mobile marketing campaigns that target very specific markets and areas of law. And with the various opportunities for mobile marketing, legal professionals will want to exploit only those techniques that will aid their marketing efforts, not hinder them.
Below are considerations and tips to help you and your practice develop the optimal mobile marketing strategy.
The first and most important step to implementing mobile marketing for your law firm is to set goals and objectives. This may require an extensive evaluation of your services and your firm's position in the market, but in essence, this phase of incubation and planning will help you figure out exactly how mobile marketing may help your firm.
Some questions you may what to ask yourself are:
Start getting your creative juices flowing, and conjuring up some innovative, yet intuitive ideas that flow with the services and brand of your firm.
Some law firm websites are complex and deep with tons of webpages. If a prospective user is looking for help from a mobile browser, you will want to make sure the content of your website is clearly viewable. More importantly, you will definitely want to ensure that you have a legitimate call to action so they can contact your firm.
In some cases, a dedicated website, such as .mobi, may need to be developed in order to cater to your mobile market. If this investment seems overkill, you can reduce the size of the mobile website to only a few key pages, or perhaps create a simple landing page that includes only basic information about your firm. And of course, don't forget about a prominent call to action.
There are plenty of mobile advertising channels to choose from, but the most powerful come in the form of search engine marketing.
Being found in the search engines, whether on a PC or smartphone, can be a complete marketing game-changer. There are two methods to obtain better search exposure: organic SEO and Pay Per Click advertising.
Organic SEO for lawyer websites requires a more long-term investment of optimizing the content on the site, as well as executing link building campaigns and other off-site strategies. This process is a bit more time consuming, however it can offer great returns and cost-efficient marketing spend.
In Pay Per Click (PPC) advertising, the opportunities are a bit more immediate. A firm can bid for top search engine placement on the keywords that drive the best traffic. And with mobile search, attorneys can take advantage of "click to call" - when a user clicks on a paid (PPC) ad, his or her phone immediately starts calling the firm. What's nice about "click to call" is that a mobile-friendly website is not needed.
First, have your goals, objectives, and overall game plan laid out. Don't be afraid to ask for insights from other marketers or even future prospects. Perhaps try surveying a few of your trusted clients to get feedback as to which mobile marketing strategies might work the best.
Mobile marketing is growing fast, so make sure your legal practice is ahead of the game.
If you have any questions or comments about mobile marketing for lawyers and law firm, please add them in the comments section below.continue...
The landing page, also called lead capture page, is extremely important for all types of web marketing campaigns. The main reason why the landing page is so significant is because it's the place where people who click on your links (whether in the organic listing or paid listing) are taken.
For legal professionals, the landing page is mostly used for Pay Per Click advertising and email marketing. This particular page has to be properly written if prospects are going to take action. Whether you have a reference, sign-up, or a transactional-based landing page, one cannot overstate the importance of great content.
Note that writing compelling landing page copy is different from writing a blog post or traditional webpage of a site. Below are several tips that will help you ensure that your landing page copy is solid and attractive for users.
1. Use the second person perspective when writing: Use ‘you’ and ‘your’ instead of ‘I’, ‘we’ and ‘our’. This helps you forge a strong connection between what you are offering and visitors to your website. It also helps you better demonstrate the value of whatever you are offering since the readers will be able to visualize how they can use the product or service and how the product/service is likely to impact their lives.
2. Emphasize on clarity: Your emphasis should be on clarity, not creativity. Be as direct as possible and avoid jargon that detracts visitors from considering the message. Use a single sentence for everything you are trying to communicate whenever possible.
3. Use language that is action-oriented: Ensure that the language used makes use of action verbs, just as is the case with call-to-action copy. Consider the blink test, which is the three seconds you get to orient Web users to a new Web page. The landing page should be such that visitors are able to see what they can do on the Web page within three seconds. Using action verbs is important because definitive instructions are more likely to be followed by visitors.
4. Use language that is value-oriented: The language you use in the content should convince visitors that the time spent filling out forms is not lost. Have a headline for every one of your landing pages. A good headline is one that explains the benefits of whatever you are offering or you are suggesting that Web users do. An example of a good heading is; “With this coupon code, you stand to get…” The heading should not only explain the features, but also the benefits. Some of the benefits may be obvious to the visitor, but point them out nevertheless.
5. Use reader-specific keywords: Most of us do keyword optimization with SEO in mind, but do not forget the actual reader when writing for keywords. The keywords in your call-to-action should align with the keywords in the important parts of your landing page (the parts where the visitors will first look to find out what you are offering).
6. Use the correct format: The sentence structure should be such that landing page copy is no longer than five lines. Break it down with headers of different sizes, parentheticals, bold text, bullets, checkmarks, and italics.
7. Proofread the landing page copy: Proofread to ensure the spelling, consistency, and grammar are on point. This is an obvious yet sometimes overlooked aspect for writing landing page copy.
Landing page optimization is often times and ongoing process of determining the copy that works best. The design of your landing pages is also critical, such as the placement of images and calls-to-action. We hope this post has been enlightening for you and your landing page optimization efforts.continue...
The Internet has made it possible for smaller law firms and legal practices to compete with larger entities. Thanks to Internet marketing channels like search engine optimization (SEO), Pay-per-Click (PPC) advertising, and Google Maps, attaining the exposure and visibility to ensure your practice is found is much more efficient.
One channel that has proven to be extremely cost-efficient for local firms is Google Maps. With Google Maps, you are able to indicate where your office is located as well as provide information about your legal practice. However what's most attractive about Google Maps is that your company's listing is a completely free way to advertise.
To ensure your law firm is listed on Google Maps for your office location and practice area, below is a step-by-step guide to getting there.
1) The first step is submitting your listing to Google, primarily the name, address and phone number of your business. To do this, create listing on Google+ (formally known as Google Places). If you already have a listing, choose to 'manage your page.' It is important that all information you submit is aligned with the info that is listed in your website. Any inconsistency can lead to diminished credibility and minimal exposure as a result.
2) The next step is choose the most relevant categories that reflects your primary keyword targets for SEO or PPC. Ensure that your categories are specific to your niche. You can pick up to five categories. It is often best if each category you choose is somewhat related to one another.
3) Write a description of your business. Indicate the core legal services and practice areas that your firm covers. It is also doesn't hurt to include some keywords in your description, so long as you use the respectively.
4) Next, upload a logo or image representing your business. You could use a picture of your store, office, or restaurant. It is often times best that you take the time to optimize your images for the maximum advertising benefit.
5) If you have a special offer or coupon you want to advertise, Google will let you implement this free of charge.
6) Next, visit www.google.com/local and do a search with your business name as a way of verifying if your business is already listed with an advert.
7) Visit www.google.com/local again and click on the Add/Edit Your Business tab. This is located at the bottom left side of the Web page. This will allow you to add your business to Google marketing.
8) You will get a step-by-step guide by Google. The process is straightforward. All that is required is for you to input the information as described above.
9) Google will contact you and ask you to verify your submission. Verification is done via mail or phone. You will be listed in a few weeks. You can update any information if you wish to.
As you progress through this process, you will find the instructions and content fields to be fairly obvious. In essence, the goal is to ensure that your law firm is properly listed for its location as well as its primary keywords, or practice areas.
The verification process may take some time, but be patient. The free advertising exposure is well worth the wait.continue...
Perhaps one of the easiest and most powerful way to improve the overall exposure of you Pay Per Click (PPC) ads is using ad extensions. "Ad extensions" is a tool in Google AdWords that offers various ways to enhance the presentation of your ads. They're a cheap and easy way to help boost you click-through rate (CTR) and stand out from your local competitors.
The various options for ad extensions include:
* Location Extensions
* Call Extensions
* Sitelinks Extensions
* Product Extensions
* Social Extensions
* Mobile App Extensions
These extensions are momentous for local PPC, especially in competitive metropolitan areas. Law firms can capture more exposure in the search results and better enhance their brand image. Depending on the type of legal practice being advertisers, only a handful of ad extension will apply. The three most effective for law firms are the location, sitelinks, and social extensions. (While mobile app and call extensions may hold their purpose, product extensions are more tailored for ecommerce PPC.)
To get to view these features, simply click the Ad extensions tab in the Google AdWords interface. You'll then see a drop down menu of all the ad extensions available.
The process of setting up each ad extension is pretty straightforward. Purely your awareness of these tools is what matters the most. Let's go into more detail on the top three extensions that can help benefit your legal practice.
Location extensions are probably the most prevalent for local PPC advertisers. If you've been doing some paid search advertising of your own, you've probably noticed these enhancements which are often tied into with the Google map.
Using location extensions will display a link below your ads listing that says "show map of (address of your firm)." Only on very locally relevant searches will the results also show the map. This is typically when this extension offers the most impact of you competitors.
Setting up location extensions is very easy. You simply confirm the login credentials with that of you Google Places page (which is now flipping to Google+ page.) In a matter of minutes, your ad can be enhanced with the location extension, which helps to make your listing look more locally legit.
Sitelinks (also shown in the image above) are another great way to grow the size of your paid search ads (for better visibility) as well as funnel visitors down the right conversion path. In practice area like family law, using sitelinks can make your ad more relevant for the sub-categories of divorce, child custody, or alimony. The idea is offer options for more specified legal services.
Get creative when using sitelinks. You might want to offer a free legal consultation or some kind of incentive that will prompt users to click your ad. Similarly to location extensions, sitelinks are an effective PPC strategy to boost your ad's CTR.
Social extensions are a bit new compared to some of the other ad extensions in Google AdWords. Social extensions sync up your PPC ads with your Google+ profile. And because the Google+ social network is heavily focused on local orientation, these extensions are ideal of local law firms.
To implement social extensions, you will first need to set up a Google+ Local profile page. If you have yet to do so, this should be the first thing on your list. Once this is complete, setting up this extension is just a matter of confirming the URL of your Google+ page in AdWords.
Using ad extensions in Google AdWords is cost-efficient and highly-effective method to improve your paid search exposure and overall PPC efforts. It's free, easy, and super impactful. For lawyers that handle criminal defense or DUI cases, the call or mobile app extensions might also be a great tool in the PPC arsenal.continue...
In order to enhance web presence of a company or local law firm, PPC (or Pay per Click advertising) can be a highly efficient solution.
It is an Internet advertising method that is used to direct traffic to websites. Advertisers or companies pay their publisher who is usually the owner of a website when their ad is clicked. Companies bid keywords in search engines in the relevant target market.
PPC advertising is used by millions of companies worldwide. If you want some PPC optimization tips to better avoid most of the common mistakes (and have your metrics surge leading to more inquiries about your products and services,) you should take note of the following common mistakes. Being aware of these PPC advertising mistakes will help you optimize your PPC campaign for better performance.
Paid search advertising (otherwise known as "PPC advertising") is highly effective channel to reach individuals seeking specific services and needs.
For a law firm, this can offer a great marketing medium to capture pre-qualified leads and earn quality cases. However, learning the in's and out's of paid search advertising can seem like an cumbersome endeavor. To an extent, it truly is.
In this article, we share with you a few paid search advertising tips for law firms with a local target market. These tips can help you make a pronounced statement in the search results for your primary keyword targets.
1. Ensure that your campaign's geo-parameters are set properly. Under the Settings tab in your Google AdWords campaign, refer to the section for "Locations." Here you can set the geographic parameters of your paid search advertising campaign.
For a local law firm, it's critical that your ads are displayed only to search engine users in target market space. You can set your geo-parameters for specific cities, counties, states, or by defining a mile radius from a given point.
2. Avoid broad match keyword bidding. The fact of the matter is, broad match keyword bidding is extremely broad. Instead, use other keyword match types like exact match, phrase match, and modified broad match bidding. This will ensure that your ads appear for the precise keywords you're targeting (and not broad generalizations that can result in wasted impressions and clicks.)
3. Leverage AdWords Ad Extensions. Perhaps the most powerful Ad Extension for local paid search advertising campaigns is "Location Extensions." This will show the address and contact information of your law firm directly in the ad copy. This one of the best PPC tips can really make your ads pop, in addition to offering a nice reference for local searchers.
4. Split-test your ad copy. One of the biggest mistakes that paid search advertisers make is only creating one ad for each ad group. Instead write three or four different ads with variant ad copy. Keep track of the ads that you split-test and make adjustments as you go. This can significantly enhance the click-through rate (CTR) of your ads.
5. Do negative keyword research. As you continue to perfect your paid search campaigns, you may want to do some negative keyword research for terms that are causing your ads to trigger for unwanted search terms. Such negative keywords might be "free" or "reviews." You can add these to the negative keyword list shown below the active keyword list in AdWords.continue...