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Simplicity Meets Law Firm SEO

An exciting part of what we do is designing new websites and re-branding law firms. It’s a lot of fun. It’s in this area of law firm marketing that we get to be the most creative as we strive to exceed what we’ve done in the past.

In our Tampa office, we have a constant arm wrestling tournament between the designers and the search engine optimization and writing team. The designers want clean designs, a few crisp images, and “Apple like” simplicity. The search engine optimization group is also a big fan of simplicity, but not so much with images; they want text.

The result is always a clean design with adequate room for plain text to be optimized, though text placement is something done by the designers with an almost querulous tone. Ultimately both sides are pleased and the client is always happy with the end product.

Does it have to be a (more…)

What Makes a Good Lawyer Blog Entry

When blogging, many are concerned about making their blog entries too long or too short. Are their standards to blogging on your own website?

While your onsite blog may not have a built-in character minimum/maximum, it generally is a good idea to at least complete a thought in 1-2 paragraphs. If you are just announcing a new page on your site, a Twitter announcement of “Just adding new site, see…” may be more appropriate. The value of your blog is in the content it provides.

So while you don’t need to write a full page (though there is nothing wrong with that) you do need at least 1-2 paragraphs to maintain a level of quality within your blog.

To learn more about legal marketing, law firm marketing, and attorney websites visit SEOLawFirm.com or call 1.800.728.5306.

Other Resources: Find a Lawyer

Why Some Law Firms Rank Higher

Frequently, prospective clients will ask us why a particular lawyer or law firm in their area or local association is ranked high on the first page. It is a legitimate question – the best way to start marketing your law firm online is to find out who your competitors are.

Over the years, here are some of the reasons we have discovered.

Age

Most commonly, the cause of the high ranking over a law firm that is new to marketing online is due to the competing firm having a more established presence on the Internet. Law firms that have had an active website for 3-5 years have an advantage over newer sites.

Media

A little attention from the media helps your search engine optimization. Sometimes, law firms that maintain strong relationships with their local news organizations get a boost in their ranking. When a news outlet writes an article in their paper or reports a story (more…)

SEO Myths of Law Firm Marketing

When a law firm embarks on a journey to discover how to get new cases on the Internet, the road is often met with confusion and contradiction. One “expert” will talk about links, another about using directories, another may say that content is all that matters.

Here are a few frequently propagated myths:

One Link Theory

The one link theory suggests that your website only needs one very high quality website linking to it, to get credibility in Google Search and other search engines. Online law firm marketing takes slightly more work. This theory goes against the very core of the PageRank algorithm which uses multiple links from third party websites to determine quality and relevance.

The one link theory is often pushed by legal marketing companies that only have a directory linking to their clients’ sites and do not offer monthly services like writing, distribution, link building from third party sites, social networking (more…)

Is Your Law Firm Optimized for the Wrong Keyphrase?

A very common trick among law firm marketing companies is to optimize an attorney’s website for easy to achieve keyphrases that are not very popular.

For example, if your office is in Decatur, Georgia, and your practice area is divorce and family law, they may optimize your website for a term like “Decatur Divorce Attorney.” What they may not tell you is that only 320 searches are conducted on Google each month for Decatur divorce attorney.

If you optimized for Atlanta divorce attorney (just 7 miles away), the search volume goes up to 2,400 searches a month on Google (data provided by Adwords).

While a series of overnight page one rankings may look good in a law firm marketing company’s portfolio, getting a law firm ranked on the first page for a popular term is far more important.

Did you know that most people living in suburban areas search with keywords using their closest metro (more…)

New Cases from Law Firm Marketing with Social Networking

There is a lot more to social networking than connecting with old college buddies and annoying surveys; there is a lot of business to be done in these virtual communities.

To successfully integrate social networks into your law firm marketing strategy, you need to begin by knowing what to look for. Websites like MySpace have a very young market and will probably not be the best place to start.

When selecting a social network, you should look for one very important feature: a hosted blog. While some business social networks may be built for professionals, with a hosted blog you won’t get an opportunity to fully show off your expertise and attract other members.

The other very important benefit of a hosted blog within a business social network is its ability to build links back to your law firm’s website. This will drive traffic to your website while increasing the number of inbound links (more…)

This Year’s Attorney SEO Strategy

Last week we talked about the benefits of having a website that can work with your offline law firm marketing efforts. These benefits included building credibility by showing case examples and client testimonials* things that cannot be done on a billboard.

But the most important value of a website is its ability to work as the center of your online law firm marketing strategy.

Two things have to happen to make an attorney website successful. Number one, when someone types in your region and practice area, your law firm’s website needs to be on the first page of the search results. This is achieved with article publishing, inbound links, social networking, and blogging. With a little time investment, hard work from your SEO company, and a consistent number of new inbound links pointing to your firm’s website from other websites, your website should be easy to find by prospective clients.

So now that the (more…)

The 2010 Law Firm Marketing Strategy

The beginning of the year is a time when many law firms are planning their annual law firm marketing strategy. Getting new cases is, of course, what will determine this year’s success.

A common deliberation in firms of all sizes is whether to continue old marketing practices that are offering limited returns or to pursue newer marketing avenues like search engine optimization and online law firm marketing.

If it’s decided to utilize web design and search engine optimization, should a firm drop their Yellow Page ads or downsize with plans of fazing out?

In comparing online media with traditional media we will start with the website. The website holds a unique power in that it can be a stand-alone marketing strategy as well as a complimentary piece to your offline marketing. For example, a billboard with your website address on it could prove to convert a passersby to a new client, who would have (more…)

The Time Element in Law Firm Marketing

Each week, we talk about the two most important parts of search engine optimization: onsite optimization (design, navigation, etc.) and inbound link building. No doubt, these are the most important items required to get your law firm’s website ranked highly on the first page of Google.

However, there is one element that is often overlooked when evaluating your competition. That element is time.

Recently when doing a competitive analysis for a client, we ran across an interesting find. The website ranked number one on the first page of Google was just awful. While they did have keyphrases present in the right areas, they were using frames, the website looked different in various web browsers, and the navigation was complicated for both users and the search engine bots.

So why were they at the top of page one? When looking at web archives, we noticed that this particular website went live in 1995. With almost (more…)

A New Attorney Website for the New Year

To improve your law firm’s ranking and to get the most out of your online law firm marketing investment for the upcoming year, you may need a new website design; or possibly, not just a new website but an entire new brand.

Branding is crucial for any business and law firms are no different. Multiple case studies show that utilizing a branding effort will convert better across all advertising medias because a strong brand gives the target client base an image to remember. By building a professional website and strong brand, you set your law firm above the competition and help your image stand out to your target client base.

When a person or company is in need of representation, they are bombarded with websites, billboards and logos of other law firms that use the scales of justice and gavels. If you want your law firm to really stand out, a generic logo (more…)