The following Guest Post is from Lior Levin:
Most lawyers and law firms are aware of the need to have a website. It gives them an Internet presence and makes it easier for potential new clients to find them. Unfortunately, the vast majority of lawyers don’t quite grasp the importance of search engine optimization, or SEO, and how it can affect your site’s visibility.
Think about when you type something into a search engine. You want to see results that match your search term, so you check out the sites shown to you on that front page of the results.
How many times have you actually clicked onto the second or third page of results to find what you’re looking for? Chances are you probably ended up typing a more refined search phrase into the search engine and tried again.
Now think about where your website appears in those search engine results for your own keywords and phrases. If clients are searching for a lawyer, are they going to find your website or your competitor’s site?
Before you rush off to a convenient search engine to check where your site appears, do you even know what keywords a visitor needs to search for in order to find you?
Most visitors won’t begin a search using your firm’s name. It’s more likely they’ll begin by searching for a specific type of lawyer in their area. For example, they might type in “estate planning lawyer in Los Angeles” or “divorce lawyer in Salt Lake City”. Or they might look for a specific service like E2 visa in our case.
If you can get your website to rank well in the search engines for terms that match your firm’s specialty and location, imagine the number of free leads you could end up with.
Start a Blog
A blog isn’t exactly the professionally designed website you’d expect to see for a lawyer or a law firm. However, it’s not intended to replace your professional business website.
Rather, it’s intended to help boost your search engine rankings. Blogs tend to rank very well on Google and blogging platforms like WordPress usually take care of most SEO work behind the scenes for you.
Your blog needs to contain content that includes and relates to the keywords you want to rank for. Each post you add to the blog should contain a link back to your firm’s business website to encourage visitors to the blog to seek more information about the firm.
Create an Avvo Profile
An Avvo profile is a great option for showcasing your field of expertise and gaining quite a few extra visitors to your website. You can also use your Avvo profile to highlight feedback and endorsements from previous clients.
Use Your Address Wisely
Put your firm’s address on your website and blog somewhere. Then claim a Google places profile and register that address. This way, when someone is searching for a specific attorney in your area, your site is likely to appear higher in those search results, making it easier for people to find you.
Write a guest post for a high-profile blog, such as www.lawyerist.com. Not only will this increase your exposure, but it will have an important effect on your SEO efforts.
Your guest post will include your name, your firm’s name, your location and a link back to your website. However, they won’t all be separate. Ideally you want your name and location to appear as anchor text, with the link behind the keywords you’ve chosen.
So, you might include a byline for your post that says “Joe Q Citizen is an estate planning attorney in Los Angeles”, but the link that points to your site will be behind these words.
It doesn’t take much to improve your SEO efforts, but it important you make a start somewhere. Each of the suggestions listed here will help to raise your rankings on the search engines. Once your site has risen through the ranks, you should find that plenty more people begin contacting you via your website for information.
About the Author: Lior is a marketing advisor for a law firm called City Immigration, a firm that specializes in helping with applying for E2 Visa.