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Law Firm SEO Marketing Cheat Sheet: Best Practices To Rank Your Law Firm Website in Google’s Top 10 Results

by Guy Alvarez • February 23rd, 2024 • Digital Marketing, SEO | Blog

Organic search is a critical channel for most businesses. In fact, 53% of website traffic comes from organic search results. Even more startling is the fact that on the first page of search results, the first five organic results account for nearly 67% of all the clicks. With so much traffic at stake, it’s easy to see why making it into Google’s top 10 results is essential. However, that doesn’t mean it’s easy! In the ever-evolving world of search algorithms, it’s important to know the latest tactics. Our marketing team at Good2bSocial has curated a law firm SEO marketing cheat sheet to help rank your law firm website in Google’s top results.

1. Ensure Your Website is Mobile Responsive

Responsive website design is a key part of user experience, and something search engines look for and respond to. Smartphones receive the highest number of online searches by a significant margin, and having a website that doesn’t respond well will hurt your search efforts. Remember, one of the most important ranking factors is user experience, and ensuring your web pages render correctly is a critical factor for good UX. To achieve this, implement flexible grid layouts, adaptable images, and fluid CSS media queries that can adjust the website’s appearance based on the device’s screen size.

2. Improve Page Load Times

A fast-loading website gets a lot more views than one that takes a while. That’s actually a factor Google takes into account for search results. Search engines receive signals when web pages load slowly. Research has shown that improving load times increases conversions and improves search engine rankings. To achieve faster load times, begin by optimizing images; compress them without sacrificing quality to reduce their file size. Implement caching so that returning users can load your site more quickly. Minimize HTTP requests by reducing the number of elements on a page, use CSS sprites to combine multiple images into one, and streamline the number of scripts and plugins. Employing content delivery networks (CDNs) can also expedite delivery by caching your site at multiple, geographically diverse data centers. 

3. Have an Intentional Keyword Strategy

The content on your website is for clients and visitors. You need to write high-quality content that resonates with them – and keywords help you to do that. “Intentional keywords” are those that tell you their purpose right off the bat, and they really help with SEO. Part of this strategy is targeting long-tail keywords such as “personal injury attorneys near me”. Research and incorporate long-tail keywords like “copyright lawyer in Philadelphia” for higher quality content that Google prefers. Also, consider targeting both primary and secondary keywords. Your primary keyword should be the main topic of your page, and then from there, you can optimize for several secondary keywords that support the main topic.

4. Optimize for Quick Search Engine Indexing

To really perform well in search and get your law firm website into Google’s top 10, there are certain elements that must be present. These items pass important information on to Google so that they can index your site quickly. Include (and optimize) the following: 

  1. Title tag
  2. Heading tags
  3. Meta-descriptions 
  4. Image alt-text

Law Firm SEO Marketing

5. Build a Backlink Strategy

Building a backlink strategy for a website targeting legal professionals, such as lawyers and legal marketers, requires a sharp focus on relevance and authority. Backlinks are an increasingly important part of SEO. Links help Google to understand how popular, authoritative, useful, and relevant a given web page is. Pages that have amassed many backlinks tend to do better in search results. The backlink strategy should begin by identifying and creating high-quality content that is tailored to the interests of the legal community, such as insightful articles on legal trends, in-depth case studies, or actionable marketing tactics for law firms. Such content serves as linkable assets that can naturally attract backlinks. Learn more about creating effective linking strategies here

6. Update Your Local Listings 

To improve your rankings in local search, you can start off by updating your listing on Google My Business. Make sure your profile is fully optimized by:

  1. Creating and verifying your Google My Business page by adding essential info like contact info and business hours. You can also update this page with health and safety measures. Make sure to personalize your page with a cover image and logo as well.
  2. Use Google Posts within your account.
  3. Encourage your clients to share reviews online.
  4. Respond to reviews and make sure to include the location as you respond. (Ex: Thank you for your review of our personal injury services in Boston, Massachusetts.)

Over time, if Google believes your business is authentic, you could earn a spot on the coveted sidebar space in Google’s local search.

7. Target Featured Snippets

Featured snippets are the featured answers to questions that are displayed at the top of Google’s search results pages when someone enters a question. These positions are amazing for traffic, as you can imagine because so many users only look at a featured snippet when searching for an answer to their question. You can optimize your content for featured snippets to improve your chances of getting chosen by:

  1. Choose which content you want to optimize for a featured snippet.
  2. Search for the keyword yourself to see what type of content has already been chosen. Pay close attention to the format- is it a bulleted list, a numbered list, or a table?
  3. Edit your content into a format where it both asks and answers questions. 
  4. Organize your content into headings and subheadings.
  5. Write in short and direct sentences. (This type of copy is easier for Google to pull as an answer to a question.)

8. Optimize Page Assets

Make sure your page title, meta description, and URL are optimized for search. A page title and meta description are most likely the first things a user notices when searching. Make sure you keep user experience in mind with titles and descriptions that fit into character limits, are highly descriptive and clue users into the content, and feature your target keyword. Remember, you can include certain items like numbers (‘12 Steps for Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit’) or year (‘How to File an Insurance Claim in 2022’) to help specify the content type. Your meta description should also be descriptive, but make sure it explains exactly what your content is about and makes its value proposition clear.

Your pages’ URLs should also be short and descriptive. No one wants to work with a URL that is overly wordy and hard to follow or type in if necessary. Always use keywords in your URL and keep it under 60 characters, so Google doesn’t cut off any pertinent information.

9. Improve Page Load Times

Improving website page load times is crucial for maintaining user engagement and optimizing SEO rankings. 19% of people will leave a page if it takes longer than 2-3 seconds to load. Having fast-loading pages is essential. To enhance your website’s performance, start by optimizing images; use proper file formats and compress images without losing quality to reduce file size. Implement caching to allow returning users to load your site more quickly. Double-check for page elements that could be contributing like unnecessary plugins. Then try conducting an SEO audit to see what could be causing slow load times.

10. Make it Accessible 

It’s been shown that many of the best-performing websites are also highly accessible. Optimize your site for accessibility by focusing on usability across platforms and technologies and adding text explanations for all images and videos. To improve accessibility, start by following the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG). Use semantic HTML to structure your content properly, making it easier for screen readers to interpret the site’s elements. Ensure that all images have descriptive alt text, provide transcripts for audio content, and include captions or sign language interpreters for videos. Make sure that your website is navigable using only a keyboard, and test its accessibility with assistive technologies. Additionally, consider implementing features such as text-to-speech or font resizing options to accommodate users with visual impairments. By prioritizing accessibility in web design, not only will you make your website more inclusive but also improve its usability for all.

11. Conduct Regular Audits

As we mentioned earlier, SEO audits can help clue you into many different issues. Conducting regular audits is a good practice, as it will point you to issues sooner rather than later, allowing you to target areas for improvement on a regular basis. To get started, first establish a routine schedule for your audits, ensuring you check in on your website’s performance periodically; monthly or quarterly are common frequencies. Document all findings and actions taken, using this information to continually improve and maintain your website’s performance. By conducting regular audits, you can stay on top of potential issues and ensure your website stays a valuable asset in achieving your online goals.

Takeaway: 

People perform searches on Google daily – more than 4 billion of them, in fact. With that amount of search taking place, you can see why it’s important to stand out in any way that you can. Your best bet for capturing more attention and more traffic is to make it into the top 10 organic listings of search engine results. Follow these tips, but don’t skip investing in a robust law firm SEO marketing strategy that can help with all facets of your digital marketing. If you’re not sure where to begin, contact us today for a free consultation. We’ve helped many lawyers and law firms optimize their sites for search and increase traffic to their websites through SEO.

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