While many law firms engage in some form of online advertising, there is a lot of room for improvement. In many cases it’s a lack of comprehensive reporting and tracking which can cost a law firm thousands in wasted advertising.
In other cases it’s about improving user experience and making it easier for potential clients to contact you. We’re sure you’ll find a few things on our list you’re not doing or could improve upon.
The end goal is to help you maximize the effectiveness of what you’re already doing to improve your ROI.
Law Firm SEO
Many firms believe that since Google hides keyword data that trying to measure SEO success is not worth trying. Many measure SEO by tracking rankings but that isn’t enough. There are other metrics you should be looking at and quantifying.
Are you targeting the right keywords?
You may be practicing “sports law”, but people who are searching for an attorney are searching for a “sports lawyer”. If your practice page just discusses the type of law you practice and not how you can help people needing your services. Your page won’t rank for terms that possible clients will be searching for.
Have you verified your site with Google’s search console?
Verifying your site with search console will provide you with a wealth of information. Monitor your rankings to ensure the correct pages show for its respective terms.
Once you confirm ownership using search console…
Provide Google with your xml sitemap and check occasionally if Google has any issues with your sitemap or pages.
Monitor the search report and keep an eye on the number of pages that are indexed and the number of clicks from search. Over time these should both increase.
Check to see if there are any sever or 404 pages and fixed as needed.
Check the search report to see which keywords your site is ranking for. Ensure that those terms are terms you want to rank for. f you notice keywords that aren’t about your site’s “theme” you will want to find those pages and make adjustments to the tags and content.
Once your pages start to move up in rankings you’ll want to monitor analytics for conversions and/or time on page. As traffic increase so should conversions. Visits with no or little conversions could be a sign of a poor converting landing page or it could be the page isn’t ranking well for its targeted term(s).
Are you checking your NAP consistency?
If your businesses’ Name, Address and Phone number is inconsistent it could hurt your ability to rank well in Google maps. Google looks at mentions of your business across the web.
If there is data that is incorrect or inconsistent Google will be unsure of which address is yours. When that happens you’re location is less likely to show up high on map listings.
Pay Per Click / Paid Search
Paid search is expensive for law firms. Underperforming keywords, ads and poor quality scores could cause your cost per acquisition to be higher than it should be. Here are some of the easiest and basic ways to improve your PPC performance.
Are you tracking conversions?
If you aren’t tracking conversions, you’ll never know which keywords/ ads are working for you. You also won’t know which content sites are working for you. This will cause you to over spend drastically. We find that law firms tend to over pay for their leads by $40! The comes out to roughly $10,000 per year.
Are you checking your search query report?
The search query report will allow you to see the exact terms your ads are being shown for. You need to go through this report regularly to find new keywords. This is also where you’ll find keywords you may want to add as negative terms.
Are you tracking calls?
In our experience most people prefer to pick up the phone and speak to a attorney ASAP. If you are only tracking leads from people submitting a request through your site, you’re making a big mistake.
You may pause a keyword that doesn’t perform well with on-site conversions, but could be producing a large number of calls.
Google has made mobile a huge focus and law firms who have yet to invest in mobile are the ones that will be impacted the hardest. If you haven’t already implemented a responsive design, now is the time.
Is your site mobile friendly?
More people search on a mobile device then on computers. If your site isn’t mobile friendly you’ll lose out on a lot of potential business. Check if your site is mobile friendly by using Google’s mobile tester.
Does your law firms site load fast?
Being mobile friendly isn’t enough. If your site is slow to load users will leave your site before it does. Check your mobile site speed with this tool. This will show where improvements could be made to improve speed.
Are your forms easy to fill out on mobile?
Short forms make it easier for users to fill. Long forms, especially on mobile will greatly decrease the chances your form will be completed. Only request the information you need to qualify the lead.
One way to increase leads is to ensure your form will allow the fields to be pre-populated with the user’s information from forms they’ve filled out in the past. Google has recommendations on how to do just that. It’s worth implementing.
Is your phone number clickable?
If your phone number is in an image or in HTML but written out in letters (i.e 1-800 –L-A-W-Y-E-R-S) people won’t be able to click to call. To ensure your number is clickable you can place your number in a line of code. This will ensure a user can touch your number on a mobile device to call. Vanity numbers are great for banner ads and print, but your website’s number should be clickable.
Social media is something many law firms struggle with. They understand the need for social media management but struggle with content creation and how engage with followers.
Are you engaging?
Sure, posting content is great on social, but it’s a two-way conversation. Many law firms forget that. People may post comments, both negative and positive. You need to be able respond to them and manage your reputation as well as sharing your knowledge.
Are you monitoring traffic and conversations?
Your conversions may be different on each marketing “channel”. Establishing what those are and tracking them in vital to your firms success. This goes for social media advertising as well. You may not receive as many “leads” from social media however, capturing emails and increasing your likes and followers is just as important and should be tracked and measured.
The goal is to be have these followers think of you when they need a lawyer. Pushing content and educating them is a good way to do that and build your firms brand.
We hope that these questions encourage you to think of other questions you should be asking yourself. Sit down with your partners and decide what other metrics are important to you. If you have questions or need help creating or tracking your online marketing contact us.