Law firms need local SEO to get more business, just like all other local businesses that want to help people in their communities. You can’t make your message heard online if no one finds you when they look for your services.
A crushing 97% of users rely on search engines to find a local business, and that’s why you need to make sure your business is listed right where potential clients are looking: at the top of Google search results.
And that’s where local SEO comes in. Let’s see how law firms can leverage local search engine optimization to increase awareness and drive more traffic to their websites.
What Is Local SEO?
Local SEO sums up all the techniques and strategies implemented to become more visible in local search results. By being strategic and consistent with local search engine optimization, you increase your chances of showing on Google’s first page when looking for a law firm or a lawyer in a specific town or county.
At the same time, if your website is optimized for local search, you can also show up in search results that use the “Near me” feature.
Why Law Firms Need Local SEO?
Local SEO is one of the most cost-effective ways to put your website where people are looking for law firms and independent lawyers. Moreover, it’s an intelligent way of using your marketing budget—you focus part of your marketing efforts and resources on getting in touch with the people who matter most to your business.
Last but not least, people trust your business more when they can easily find you online. The first five results on a page get about 67.6% of the clicks associated with a query. People want information fast, so they’ll get it from the brands and experts with an optimized online presence.
However, it doesn’t mean you can ignore the other aspects of SEO. You still need an optimized and user-friendly website to rank high in search results, so local SEO doesn’t substitute an SEO strategy for your law firm, but it’s a key part of it.
With that in mind, let’s see what you can do right away to optimize your website for local search results.
7 Steps to Rank High in Local Search Results
1. Identify Local Keywords to Rank for in Your Area
You want to know what terms and phrases people use to find a lawyer in your area. Sometimes, that can be as simple as “divorce lawyer in Dallas,” but keyword research might surprise you with alternatives that aren’t equally obvious. For example, people could be looking for terms like “divorcing in Dallas” or “how much a divorce costs in Dallas,” depending on their pain points and specific needs.
The secret is to separate these terms by user intent—why are people looking for this specific information? This way, you can provide the correct answers at the right time and build those relationships that make people trust you and hire your law firm.
2. Put Your Business on Google Maps
Google encourages local businesses to claim their locations on Google Maps. Go to the website, use the search bar to find your address on the map, then use the “Add your business” button to start the registering process.
You need to get verified to claim ownership, but the process is relatively simple, and the return on your effort is significant in the long run.
3. Optimize Your Law Firm’s Google My Business Profile
If you don’t have a Google My Business profile, create one. If you have one, make sure you update it regularly to maintain the content relevant to your audience and simultaneously show search engines that you’re still in business.
Make sure people can get all the information they need from your Google profile and that they can easily use it to get in touch. Leave an available phone number, an accurate physical address, working hours, FAQs, any other details that make it easy for people to feel confident about getting in touch.
4. Build “NAP” Citations on Relevant Websites
NAP stands for Name, Address, and Phone number, meaning that you need to ensure that relevant third-party websites that list your business have accurate and updated contact information on your law firm.
Sure, it’s hard to control this information with so many new platforms. Once every quarter, audit your online presence and see what platforms rank high in search results, then make sure the information they have about your company is correct.
Claim these profiles to be in control of your online presence. Some might ask for a fee in return. It’s money well spent, as it encourages people and makes it easy for them to get in touch when they need a lawyer.
5. Curate Online Reviews
When people talk about you online and take the time to leave a review, thank them regardless of the number of stars you receive. Keep track of your reviews, use the best to build trust with potential clients and the less friendly to improve your services further.
Remember that everything you write online is traceable, and the way you treat past or existing clients can also show your professionalism and customer support skills. Use every opportunity to develop valuable conversations online to increase your reach and connect to the right people.
6. Build Optimize Your Social Media Profiles
Your law firm should have a consistent social presence on platforms your target audience uses. Make sure your social profiles include accurate contact information so that search engines (and potential clients) don’t get confused when trying to find you online.
Additionally, your top lawyers could help expand your reach with well-maintained social profiles on platforms like LinkedIn or Twitter. This way, they build thought leadership and improve your law firm’s reputation online and offline.
7. Keep Your Website up to Date
Local SEO works when your website is appropriately optimized. Besides these local SEO techniques, everything else on your website should work correctly. SEO factors like load speed, accessibility, a sitemap, and top-notch content are crucial to making your site appealing to search engines and delivering an excellent user experience to site visitors.
Local SEO helps you serve your community better and be accessible when people most need a lawyer. It’s an investment and a way to support potential and existing clients who expect you to be one click away when they’re in need.
When you start implementing these seven steps, you’ll slowly get more visibility online, with a significant impact on your traffic. Some of these areas require more time to generate results, and consistency is essential to win the SEO game.
If you need help with auditing and curating your online presence to identify SEO opportunities or could use assistance with website optimization, we’re here to help. We use tested and proven methods to help you rank in local searches for law firms and lawyers so you can reach the target audience in your area.