Effective online marketing of websites for lawyers is a matter of effective keywords, quality content and search engine optimization. Each of those three factors must be implemented correctly in order to achieve consistent results. Failure to implement any one of those three factors will doom your law practice website to internet purgatory. Since many websites for lawyers fail to implement at least one, you have a great opportunity to maximize your website’s performance if you implement all three.
Keywords For Websites For Lawyers
What is a keyword for an attorney website? A keyword is a word or a phrase that a person would search in order to locate lawyers in your practice area (e.g. “injury lawyer in Houston” or “how to probate a will”). A keyword could also be your name or the name of your law firm, but those are very specific keywords that require the internet user to know of you ahead of time. This article assumes you are trying to get internet traffic from new clients who do not already know you.
Websites for lawyers should target various keywords that describe the type of cases the law firm handles. Keywords are the foundation for effectively marketing websites for lawyers. Identifying effective keywords is crucial because you must utilize those keywords throughout your website in order for the search engines to associate your website with those keywords. In other words, if you want to be found when a person searches for “injury lawyer in Houston,” that keyword phrase must appear multiple times on your website.
Google has a free keyword tool to help identify relevant keywords. There are other premium keyword tools available for purchase on the internet as well. For the most part, those programs utilize the data from Google, but they make it more user-friendly. Keyword research for websites for lawyers is both an art and a science. It takes practice and it takes time, but it is a crucial step that cannot be overlooked.
Creating Valuable Content For Websites For Lawyers
Now that you have selected your list of relevant law practice keywords, you need to use those keywords in the content of your website. The easiest and most effective way of adding valuable content to your website is to use a blog as your website. As a general rule, Google loves blogs because blogs tend to have fresh content. Keep in mind, Google’s goal is to deliver relevant search results to the user. Google is not concerned about whether or not a user can find your website unless your website has content Google believes is relevant to that particular search.
If you are blogging, you add content by publishing blog articles as often as you can – at least once a week. Each blog article should focus on one or two of the law practice keywords from your list. Those keywords should appear several times throughout your blog article, especially in the title, headings and sub-headings.
As a general rule, the more pages on your website, the better it will perform with the search engines. A typical small firm website might have ten to twenty pages. Each blog article is considered a separate page on the website. Therefore an attorney blog website will have more than one hundred pages in a year’s time if the lawyer publishes only two articles per week. Do you see the power of blogging?
What is valuable content? “Valuable content” means articles that provide information readers will find helpful. That generally means a relatively brief article (e.g. 200 – 500 words on average) with a single narrow topic with a descriptive title–for example, “3 Things To Do If You Have A Car Wreck,” “What To Do If You Get Sued,” “Penalties For Possession of Marijuana In Texas.” Do not try to write articles about broad topics like a law review article. Blog articles on websites for lawyers should be intended for the layperson. Avoid legalese and confusing phrases. Common questions from clients are a great source of ideas for blog articles.
Optimizing Websites For Lawyers
Search engine optimization is the process of making your law practice website as easy as possible for Google and the other search engines to find. It includes identifying your relevant keywords and adding quality content to your website, as discussed above. But it also includes use of meta-tags, meta-descriptions, alt-image tags, efficient website design and other steps to help search engines associate your website with the keywords you’ve selected.
All of the meta data mentioned above are found in the HTML (i.e. hyper text markup language) that is part of the coding of your website. If you are blogging on your law website, then your blogging software has a built-in interface that allows you to simply enter the meta data into fields in the editing screen for each page of your website as well as for each blog post–a very simple process. If you are using a “static website” as opposed to a blog, you will have to manually enter the meta tags in the HTML coding.
The meta data fields are essentially another opportunity for you to tell the search engines what the keywords are on your attorney website. Keep in mind, websites (including websites for lawyers) are evaluated by software “robots” such as the Googlebot and not by humans. The “robots” sift through the content of your website to try and “figure out” what your site is about by seeing what words (or phrases) seem to appear the most often–that’s where your keywords come into play. But just to be sure, the robots look at your meta data to see what you are telling them your actual keywords are.
Without meta data, you are inviting (almost guaranteeing) the robots will overlook some (or most) of your keywords. Failure to include meta data is one of the biggest and most common mistakes that occur on websites for lawyers. While it is theoretically possible for your law website to perform well in the search engines without meta data, it is very unlikely. Meta data is something the search engines are actively looking for. The absence of meta data will almost always have very adverse effects on the search engine performance of websites.
Powerful Websites For Lawyers Attract Internet Traffic
Fortunately for you, most lawyers do not take the time to optimize their websites for internet success. That means it is very possible for you to establish a dominant internet presence in your market by publishing a well-designed and properly optimized attorney website. The money spent developing and optimizing websites for lawyers can be one of the best investments an attorney can make. A website that performs well on the internet will attract new clients at no additional advertising cost for years to come. Copyright 2011 by Allen Rogers