Posts Tagged ‘legal website’

Building Links for Your Legal Firm’s Website without Anchor Text

Friday, February 10th, 2012

Anchor text references the words which make up a link on your law firm’s website—for example if you have the sentence “If you have been in a car accident, call a personal injury attorney,” the words “personal injury attorney” are your anchor text which links back to your legal website and the name of your firm. Anchor text is used when you want your website to rank for a specific keyword, however it’s easy to go overboard with anchor text when optimizing your law firm’s website; too much and you will end up accomplishing the exact opposite of what you intended, as Google will penalize your site.  When you are clear on which keyword you want to target, and are getting links on your website with the desired keyword, that’s all well and good, but you must be careful about having too many links which look exactly the same. If 99% of the links which point to your law firm’s website pages are “personal injury attorney,” a red flag goes up to Google that these may not be “normal” links. Because people have exploited anchor text in the past, everyone must now be more careful about how they use it.

Build Your Legal Website’s Links for Branding and Alternative Keyword Phrases

Your goal is to build links to your business/brand name so the brand becomes much more authoritative in Google’s search results. This goes back to Google Instant results in that if someone only “sort of” remembers the name of your law firm and begins typing in hopeful letters in the search bar, you really want your name to pop up under Richardson Law Firm once the potential client has typed in “Ric.”  On the flip side, if your potential client is not really sure of what they are looking for, Google’s suggestions may send them off in a direction that is, unfortunately, not toward your law firm.  Make a list of the keywords your legal website uses, then start typing each one of them into Google’s search bar and see what suggestions come up. This little exercise may send you in another direction when you are considering anchor text. Other major search engines–such as Bing–offer keyword alternatives, so take advantage of that when considering alternative keywords and anchor text.

Why Anchor Text is Important

It is actually possible to achieve top ranking for extremely competitive keywords even though you may have not even a hint of on-page legal SEO elements.  Consider that consistently sits in the number one spot when one types in “jobs” in the search bar but that the word “jobs” does not appear on the page in actual text form. By the same token, if you type in “computers” on the Google search bar, six of the top ten pages don’t even contain the word “computers” in the copy, meaning the search results are due solely to the anchor text of inbound links. Therefore it is impossible to say that anchor text is not important, but your firm needs to learn how to use it wisely when building links.

Using Anchor Text Wisely

Anchor text must be used judiciously when building your firm’s legal SEO as using the wrong words can take you even further away from the links you need. It is advisable to avoid using the anchor text “click here,” as the phrase is not specifically related to the content on your legal website—when the crawler examines the “click here” anchor text it may not see any relevant keyword even if that particular link points to a relevant part of your legal website. When considering legal SEO and your law firm’s web design, you should try to use as many keywords as possible from the list you developed during the planning process. Then determine what anchor text is absolutely essential to your firm’s site, and use only the most critically important.

The Importance of Online Marketing for Your Legal Website

Tuesday, February 15th, 2011

Having a great legal website design and fabulous legal SEO can allow your law firm to become much more focused—and the more focused your firm becomes, the more quickly they will be recognized as a specific niche area expert. Once that happens, you will find that other attorneys will begin referring cases to you which are applicable to your specialty, and soon you will find that while other attorneys may be forced to take any case which walks in the door, you will be attracting your ideal client. While television ads go out to all those watching television, the Internet can be a much more specific magnet which attracts only those clients who are looking for a specific attorney to deal with their specific problem. It is this specificity which makes online marketing essential for legal firms, and gives law office websites tremendous marketing power.

Free Advice concerning Legal SEO and online marketing.  Speak with an expert not a sales representative and get REAL ANSWERS to your questions. Call (769) 218-6099 for free tips and ideas on online marketing for law firms.

You may have seen solo practitioners who list every known practice area on their website—a strategy which is almost guaranteed to be unsuccessful. This is typically known as the “shotgun” approach, and while the jack of all trades attorney may feel he is attracting more clients by specializing in everything but the kitchen sink, the reality is that potential clients may feel there is no focus to the practice, and quickly click to an attorney website which does offer focus. The second reason these types of attorney websites are often unsuccessful is due to the fact that there is not enough information on any one subject, meaning nothing shows up in the search engines.

The Ideal Client

The ultimate goal of your online marketing strategy is to attract your ideal client, not just any client. If your staff is constantly answering phone calls from clients who either do not have particularly attractive cases or cannot afford your services, then your online advertising budget is being wasted. Internet marketing can give you the capability to specifically focus with precision and accuracy—if you use it wisely. Your ideal client is interested in seeing a focused attorney who successfully represents clients with the same specific problem they are currently experiencing.

The potential client who turns to the Internet to research attorneys can now put in very precise search terms to find the most experienced attorney in a particular practice area. Your ideal client has likely screened several attorneys from the comfort of their home before they ever pick up the phone to make an actual call. Should your client want to pursue a personal injury claim following a bus accident, they will likely type in “Bus Accident Attorney in Albuquerque,” to find a local attorney devoted to their issue. By the same token, the client who has recently been charged with a DUI or DWI is looking for an attorney who focuses exclusively on drunk driving defenses; if the client’s case involves a breath test reading then he or she will want an attorney who has demonstrated the best strategy and has the most experience in fighting the Breathalyzer used in their jurisdiction.  It is also much more likely that the client who is putting in such specific search terms are also willing—and able—to pay for your services.

Marketing Your Legal Firm from an SEO Perspective

Search engines are uniquely designed to find a particular page on a website which most thoroughly answers the consumer’s questions. Therefore, the more helpful—not to mention detailed—your firm’s website is, the more likely you will other sites linking to your pages, and the greater chance you stand of being known as an authority on a specific topic. The more websites which link to your pages, the more likely your pages will show up in the search engines. If you want to optimize your law firm’s website, you must have a great amount of unique content on one specific practice area as well as more interior pages which deal with the many issues related to that practice area.

Of course you need to make sure you have a well-designed website with an easy-to-use navigation system, as well as a content management system which allows your attorneys to visit the site frequently, adding and editing content as necessary. The quality of your online content is extremely important, as are the links to other interior pages on the website relating to a particular issue. Your local telephone number and address need to be easy to find, and, ideally, on every page of your site.  More and more important are the number of links from social media websites, as well as the outbound links to other websites which deal with the specific issue. In any case, tailoring your website for your ideal client, while being extremely aware of SEO, can make the difference between run-of-the mill clients vs. your ideal client.

Free Advice concerning Legal SEO and online marketing.  Call (769) 218-6099 for free advice and tips.  Speak with an expert not a sales representative and get REAL ANSWERS to your questions.

The Basics of Using Google Alerts to Improve Your Legal Website or Law Firm Blog

Sunday, December 12th, 2010

If you are interested in keeping abreast of the ever-changing laws without emptying your pocketbook, Google Alerts can give you the peace of mind which comes with knowing you are up-to-speed and able to monitor the changing laws, while ensuring your practice is fully covered. Do you ever wonder what others are saying about your firm, or you personally? Using Google Alerts in a savvy and intelligent way can keep you on the professional cutting edge.

Google Alerts are basically set up to monitor content, automatically notifying you when any new content from the Internet matches the pre-set terms you have selected. Google Alerts can be used to find out what others are saying (on the Internet) about you and your firm, to monitor the latest legal news, to monitor the status of a bill, and even to stay informed as to what your competition is up to.

How Are Notifications Received?

There are several ways you can receive Google Alerts, the most common one being through your e-mail. You can also receive Google Alerts as a web feed, or even have them prominently displayed on your iGoogle page. There are essentially six types of alerts to receive when content on the Internet matches your particular search terms and the alerts you have created.  You can set your Google Alerts to the default, which is everything, or the entire web, through the Google search engine. Secondly, you can set your settings to News, meaning you will only receive updates when matching content makes it into the top ten results of a Google News Search. Third down the line is the “web” setting, which allows you to receive updates only when new web pages appear in the top twenty results for a Google Web search, and fourth is the blog setting-you will only get updates when content which matches your search terms appears in a blog which resides in the top ten results of a Google Blog Search. The video setting will allow you to receive updates only when matching content appears in the top ten results of a Google video search, and finally, you can set your alters to “groups” which will only send updates whenever matching content appears in the top fifty results of a Google Groups search.

Next, you can choose the frequency of your Google Alerts, meaning you can have Alerts sent to you once a day, once a week, or in real time (or close to it), as things happen. For many subjects or issues, onece a day or once a week will be plenty, most especially if you have chosen a top which receives tons of hits. If you are setting an Alert for something which happens rarely, but you want to know as soon as it does happen, set your Google Alert to “as it happens.”  Don’t get too overwhelmed with the different settings; after you play with them a bit you will easily find the one which works best for you and your specific needs.

How Complicated is Setting Up Google Alerts?

Don’t panic, setting up Google Alerts is fairly simple. You must first go to From here you will pick your search terms; for instance, you might choose Texas DWI Law, then you will use the drop down boxes to select the type of alert, frequency, length, and where to have them sent. Although it may take a little trial and error to get Google Alerts set up exactly like you want them to be, it will definitely be worth it once you have everything just like you want it.

Why Should I Bother?

Google Alerts can be an incredibly powerful tool for lawyers–Google travels around the web literally sucking up insanely huge amounts of data from across the globe, while you work and sleep, then analyzes those sites for relevant information according to you search terms, and sends you an e-mail with the results.

Where Do I Start?

If you are unsure which search terms to use to begin with, first of all put in your own name/firm’s name as a keyword so you will always be up to speed on what the rest of the world is saying about you. If you want to know what your competition is up to, put in their names next. You can easily monitor news about legislation or regulation in specific practice and business areas by setting keywords for those subjects. You can set your Google Alerts to look for proprietary data of your most significant clients—you might be surprised at how often such data shows up in blogs across the Internet. So, if one of your clients sells a highly-recognized product, you can keep up with what’s being said about it, or even watch for knockoffs. You could enter a search term such as “electronic evidence,” which would allow you and your firm to keep up with developments which are highly relevant to your practice. Think of terms which might render some surprising information regarding a pending litigation your law firm is handling, think of a place you want to monitor, such as an office you might have in another state or country.

While it’s true that your Google Alerts can be somewhat erratic at times, meaning you may not get everything you should—or thing you should—and sometimes there may seem to be absolutely no rhyme or reason to why you receive what you receive. Even so, Google Alerts is the best thing going for tracking news specific to your firm and your practice areas.

FREE ADVICE!  Call (769) 218-6099 for free advice and answers to your law firm search engine optimization and ranking questions. No obligation to buy.  Speak with an experienced marketing professional, not a sale representative! Limited time offer!

Ethical Link Building for Your Law Firm Website

Saturday, December 4th, 2010

There are all sorts of ways you can build links to your legal website or blog, however some of them are ethical and some of them are clearly not. As a legal firm, your highest priority must be to ensure that your link building—along with everything else connected to your website or blog—are absolutely ethical and professional. Anything but ethical behavior regarding your Internet presence can quickly lose your firm the credibility it’s worked so hard to obtain. Have you ever wondered how, once your site, along with every other competing legal website has been optimized online, the search engines determine whose site has the most authority, therefore should receive a higher rank? The answer is really pretty simple: inbound links. It’s just not enough anymore to write content, no matter how great it is. You, as the attorney, must always ask yourself whether any particular instance is a great link opportunity just waiting to happen. There are several different methods for link building which are ethical and not too difficult to boot.

Legal Blog Comments

Hopefully your law firm has jumped wholeheartedly onto the legal blog bandwagon. Legal blogs are an excellent way to increase traffic to your firm’s website, as well as a great way to provide information and education to prospective clients. If your firm has its own legal blog, then you are likely reading other legal blogs from your competitors. While there, making comments can offer an opportunity to build links to your own site, as well as helping you become well-known for your particular niche. Indirectly this can bring more visitors to your own legal website, readers to your legal blog, and more links from all the people who like your site or blog.

Search-Oriented Link Building

Newer websites will most often carry little weight with the search engines when you are talking about link building, so it’s a good idea to prioritize and focus your precious time and energy first on your older sites. Keeping your older sites fully optimized ensures the traffic keeps rolling in, then you can slowly begin to work on newer sites as you have the time. Many SEO experts believe that links from .edu and .gov domains tend to be much more valued by search engines. Think hard about how you can get a link to a school or university. Natural links are always the best—if people are linking to your legal website because your content is stellar, that’s a very good sign, and one that search engines will sit up and take notice of. While paid links have their place, they can also get you penalized for spam, so make sure you are fully cognizant of which paid links are good, and which are not.

Article Marketing and Directory Submissions

A method which has recently become popular is to write a short article regarding the topic you are trying to promote, then publish it on a major article directory site. Those who are actively seeking content for their sites download the articles they like, publish them to their own website, and give you a link in return—simple, yet effective. Before article marketing became popular, the best link-building method was through directories, yet plenty of these directories became nothing more than link farms and took a sharp nosedive. There are still directories on the Internet which are credible and could be worth submitting to, just make sure you differentiate the credible from the not-so-credible.

Press Releases or Guest Posting

If you need to generate lots of high-quality links in a short space of time, try writing a press release, then publishing it through one of the sites which typically handles press release distribution. You will effectively gain a link from every site which publishes your press release. Guest posting is similar to article marketing, in that you create specific content, then offer it up to another website or blog in your legal niche, and ask the owner to publish it—effective and a great way to build your own profile.

As you are well-aware, the legal industry is an extremely competitive one; effective yet ethical link building requires you to understand how to deliver your results online month after month, remaining high in the search engine rankings without compromising your quality or professionalism. With a little practice, link building can be done successfully—yet ethically, allowing your law firm to greatly increase their legal website building.