In such a competitive market, it can be tough for businesses to get noticed online.
That’s particularly true for legal professionals. With so many law firm websites ranking in search engine results, it might feel like you’re fighting an uphill battle just to find new clients.
But what you might not realize is that it’s not enough to simply have a website for your firm. Your site needs to attract visitors by helping them find the solutions they need.
That’s where SEO comes in. Search engine optimization can allow your site to be noticed by Google, but it’s really all about providing relevant information to the people who could benefit most from your services.
With that in mind, here are just five SEO tips that law firms can use to improve their web presence in 2022.
Use Google Business Profile
Google Business Profile (formerly known as Google My Business) is an incredible tool for local organizations. It’s a free platform that can allow you to appear more prominently in search results when people in your community are looking for answers.
The new Google Business Profile is now easier to manage. You can claim and edit your profile simply by searching for your business in Google Search. From there, you can add your NAP (name, address, and phone number), services or focuses, photos, recent updates, reviews, and much more.
GBP is a must for any business looking to attract local clients because it takes your visibility beyond conventional search results. It can highlight your law firm by helping you appear in the map pack or other places in search results, which can drive more traffic to your site or result in more calls to your office. You can even track where your leads are coming from so you know what’s working (and what’s not).
Your Google Business Profile can provide a greater sense of legitimacy, as well, which is especially important for those in the legal field. Clients want to know who they can trust – so if you appear prominently in search, you’ll be seen as a reputable industry leader.
If you aren’t already active on Google Business Profile, make sure it’s at the top of your to-do list for 2022.
Generate Client Reviews
Every local business should make review generation and management a priority. Data shows that customers value online reviews just as much as personal recommendations. And when a client needs legal support, they’ll definitely do their fair share of online research first.
If a law firm has very few reviews or has only testimonials on their own site, prospective clients will probably defer to a lawyer who has a more established online reputation. Third-party platforms like GBP, Facebook, Yelp, and other sites provide more neutrality and are therefore seen as more trustworthy to many folks.
Having a good amount of client reviews can ensure you’re seen as trustworthy and respected. While reviews should never make promises or misleading claims, the experiences of former clients can often put prospects at ease with their choice.
One of the best ways to generate more reviews for your law firm is to simply ask for them. Don’t present any incentives when you make this request, but simply let your clients know that their support can make a big difference for your firm.
When you receive reviews, make sure to respond to each one with compassion and empathy. Thank the reviewer for their time and ensure each person feels heard. Even if a client had a less-than-ideal experience, your response will tell potential clients everything they need to know about working with you.
By having a greater presence via online reviews, you’ll automatically generate more buzz about your firm and drive traffic to your site – both of which can improve your search engine rankings.
Focus on User Experience
If you’re still using website design from 10 years ago, it’s time to rethink the message you’re sending.
Web development can be expensive, but it’s worth the investment. It takes only a few seconds for your site to make an impression on prospective clients. If your design is outdated or your site is slow, that impression will be poor.
In 2022, Google will continue to increase its focus on user experience. Google wants to reward sites that are speedy, secure, and easy to use (especially for mobile users!).
If your site isn’t mobile-friendly or provides an otherwise lackluster user experience for web visitors, it’s time to schedule a redesign. Not only will antiquated web design frustrate clients, but it won’t do you any favors with Google. Your rankings will stagnate (or even tank) due to your lack of care.
Be sure to review Google’s Core Web Vitals, conduct a site speed audit, and work with a professional designer so your website will provide a pleasant experience for your visitors.
Create Valuable Content
Content is still king, but it’s more about quality than quantity.
Yes, you should publish new blog posts on a regular basis. But you shouldn’t post just for the sake of posting. You need to ensure your content is providing real value to your prospective customers. Otherwise, why would they click?
Find out the kinds of questions and concerns your clients have and create content surrounding those topics. Establish an editorial calendar so you can keep posts as relevant as possible and promote them on other platforms.
Finally, make sure that your content speaks to your audience. Your posts should be easy to understand, relevant to their lives, and free of typos and grammatical mistakes.
Optimize For Voice Search
Voice search is quickly becoming a popular way to find information online. If your site isn’t optimized for voice search, you could be ignoring a large portion of your audience.
Since we utilize voice search technology in a different way than traditional web searches, you’ll want to adjust your SEO strategy accordingly. Instead of optimizing solely for shorter keywords, be sure to include long-tail keywords in your research and optimizations.
You should also consider adding an FAQ page that includes common questions you’re seeing in voice-powered searches. Remember that voice searches are typically conversational in nature, use complete sentences, and begin with question words (“who,” “what,” “where,” “why,” and “how”).