Firms "getting SEO wrong" by focusing too much on generic phrases

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By Legal Futures

23 February 2012


Searches: commercial intent of a client is higher with long tail keywords

Lawyers are focusing their search engine optimisation (SEO) tactics on the wrong keywords and can convert more work by targeting so-called ‘long tail’ keyword searches, digital marketing experts have claimed.

Research carried out by Add People among more than 100 legal clients found that law firms are more likely to attract and convert clients searching on Google for niche phrases than generic searches.

Managing director Grant Barton said too many firms focus on being found for the wrong keywords. Being number one in Google for ‘London law firm’ does not convert as many clients as being number one for something more niche like ‘dispute

with fellow directors’ if you’re a business lawyer, he explained.

“Law firms can gain a lot by being placed higher up the Google rankings. As well as the reputational advantage, the commercial advantage is that clients are being more specific with the phrases they search for. The commercial intent of a client is higher with long tail keywords. Concentrating on niche terms brings gets faster results than more competitive generic terms.

“To give a simple analogy, someone searching for ‘shoes’ is going to be less likely to be in buying mode than someone searching for ‘size ten tennis shoes’.  Law firms need to get to grips with the habits of internet users and ensure their services are easily found through SEO tactics.”

Among the tactics for a firm looking to improve the SEO for its website, said Mr Barton, are daily content, multiple links back from other sites and blogs, using “keyword rich URLs” for each page, registering the firm with Google Places so it can be found on map searches, and putting up short videos on the site.

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Joint (ad)ventures in the legal sector

Nigel Wallis lo res

We all know that nothing in life is certain. As the actor, director and philosopher Clint Eastwood once said: “If you want a guarantee, buy a toaster.” He also said he’d tried being reasonable and didn’t like it. They should teach this kind of philosophy in law school. One thing in life is reasonably certain though. If you’re a law firm worth your salt, at some point you will be approached by another entity (most probably a work introducer) with a whizzy idea to ‘partner’ with you to ‘help you accelerate your growth’. In commercial speak this means, ‘we’d like to keep feeding you work but we’d also like to share in your profits’. The arrangement may be pitched to you as a joint venture – a win-win no less.

March 27th, 2017