When conducting a search on Google’s homepage, you may have noticed a little button to the right of “Google Search” which says “I’m Feeling Lucky”. Originally, the feature was a fun way to explore the web. Click “I’m Feeling Lucky,” and you go straight to the top-ranking website connected to your search while skipping the search results page. Today, Google uses the button to help Googlers discover art, food and even charities.
While it may be entertaining to play a game of “I’m Feeling Lucky” when meandering around the web, you shouldn’t rely on luck to get your law firm ranking high for local searches.
You may have noticed some law firms that are ranking pretty well in your local search results for your keyphrases. A lot of them probably have the following attributes:
1) A website with a lot of content
2) A website that has an established reputation
3) A solid link portfolio
Search engine marketing often focuses on getting top placement for the most popular keywords related to your law firm’s practice area. This strategy generally delivers the most leads, and it’s a solid approach. But when a big-city search doesn’t perform as well in the suburbs, a pay-per-click campaign might fill the void.
For several years, Google has been using the geographic location of the searcher to determine what search results to display. When you are looking for a place to eat, a mechanic or most other local services, you don’t have tell Google where you are. It knows. And people are catching on.
In most cities, keywords and phrases entered without a city descriptor are getting more traffic than keywords with them. Here are a few examples. The keywords below that do not include a city show the number of searches from within the previously identified city’s limits.
Los Angeles personal injury attorney (more…)
Many law firms see a mobile app as just another item on the list of desirable marketing tools. Once it’s built, they cross it off the list and don’t think about it again, even if it attracts very little attention. They don’t realize that an app needs a marketing plan of its own to really succeed.
If you build it, they won’t necessarily come.
Getting your law firm’s app in the Google Play or Apple store will not independently yield downloads. You have to convince people that your app offers something they can’t currently get from your website.
As a lawyer, knowledge is your product. People pay you for what you know and for the time you spend using that knowledge on their behalf. When someone goes to a doctor, they want to feel better. When someone goes to a lawyer, they want information and action.
You can draw people to your firm by (more…)
Google has started notifying webmasters of their incompatible websites. These notices are sent out through Google Webmaster Tools or via email. If you have received one of these notices, here is what you need to know.
- It’s not a penalty. Google is not penalizing your website for any wrongdoing. It’s not a warning or a manual action.
- It may affect your ranking. Last year, Google introduced the “mobile-friendly” tag on the search results page. If you do a search on your mobile device, the search results page will show “mobile-friendly” next to the websites that are responsive or have properly configured mobile websites. We have noticed the majority of websites showing on the first page have the mobile-friendly tag — which leads us to believe that Google is giving preference to these websites for mobile searches.
- You can fix it. There are a number of options to quickly correct your website. You may (more…)
In July 2014, Google released the Pigeon algorithm update. As 2015 gets underway, learn how important it is for law firms to understand the effects of Pegeon on local SEO strategies.
Podcast: Play in new window | Download (3.4MB)
The term “thin content” became a buzzword in the SEO industry two years ago, when Google’s Panda update started pounding websites that contained useless content. In definitions, “thin content” is often connected with short page length or low word count. But Google’s Webmaster Tools Help simply defines it as content that provides “little to no added value.”
The examples provided by Google include:
- Automatically generated content: This is content that is built by bots. Usually, this type of content is created by uploading someone else’s content into a synonym-based content generator. The result is usually nonsensical, but unique as far as plagiarism is concerned. For the sake of your user’s experience, this should never happen on your law firm’s website.
- Thin affiliate pages: Fortunately, this type of content is not common on attorneys’ websites. Affiliate pages generally offer low-quality content with the sole intention of getting someone to click on a link to (more…)
For nearly a decade, search engine marketers have been the hailing the blog as the best communication invention since Gutenberg’s press. The blog provides an easy way to keep your website active, up to date and filled with good content. It also makes it easy to share your content through various online outlets and social media.
But some law firms believe that their blog is going to become a one-stop resource. That people will cancel their Wall Street Journal subscriptions, turn off NPR, and clear NYTimes.com from their browser’s cache, looking solely to the firm’s blog for new information. Not only does that not happen, it should not happen.
Our goal is to bring in new cases for our clients. If the majority of web traffic is not new traffic, our clients get concerned. When our clients are reviewing their statistics, we are judged harshly if too many of their website’s (more…)
In July 2014, Google released the Pigeon algorithm update, which significantly altered local search engine results pages (SERPs). As 2015 begins, it is important for law firms to understand the effects of Pigeon on local SEO strategies.
One of Pigeon’s biggest impacts was that directories like Yelp and Legal directories increased in ranking, while some local businesses took a hit. Jobs, real estate, movies and insurance took the biggest hit. However, on the whole some law firms actually saw a small boost from the Pigeon update.
According to Moz’s Local Ranking Factors 2014, Pigeon also changed which ranking factors were most important. Following the update, the following ranking factors became more important:
- Domain Authority of Website
- Proximity of Address to Point of Search (Searcher-Business Distance)
- Quality/Authority of Inbound Links to Domain
- Quality/Authority of Inbound Links to Landing Page URL
- Physical Address in City of Search
- Quality of Reviews by Authority Reviewers (e.g. Yelp Elite, Multiple Maps Reviewers, etc)
- Quality/Authority of (more…)
Voice search is an increasingly common way to use search engines. This is changing how people find law firms. Find out how.
Podcast: Play in new window | Download (2.9MB)