A law firm began to appear on page 1 of google for almost all keywords
A well-regarded law firm was struggling to appear on Google’s search engine results pages (SERPs) for all of its keywords and keyphrases. This was particularly problematic as it is a full-service firm that practices many areas of law. On average, the firm’s website was appearing around page 6 of Google. I investigated and formed a Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) strategy to solve the various problems.
Almost immediately, pages on the website began to climb from page 6 closer to page 1. Several landed on page 1 immediately. I made ongoing and continual improvements until the vast majority of pages appeared on page 1 for their respective keywords and keyphrases. The number of daily impressions (times a page was viewed in SERPs) increased by over 600% during the first three months. By month six, the number of daily impressions had increased by over 1,200%. Almost all relevant keyphrase searches saw the firm appear in the top three results on page 1. Most were in the first position.
It should be noted that these results were not due to the firm having a low number of impressions to begin with. In fact, it enjoyed several thousand impressions every day.
SEO success requires consistent and ongoing tweaks to maintain steady growth, or even to maintain current positions. To abruptly stop would lead to falling back down the rankings. This SEO strategy is ongoing.
This is how I did it:
I set up various analytics tools, including Google Search Console and Google Analytics, to measure the results and report them to the partners of the law firm.
I conducted SEO research to identify what keywords were used by people that actively searched for each of the firm’s services. This was achieved primarily through competitor analysis and specialist keyword planner software. It soon became apparent that the existing site was severely lacking in keywords often used by clients and instead leaned towards keywords often used by solicitors. This is a common error in the legal sector.
The website was overhauled with new content that made clever use of keywords and keyphrases in page titles which were also reflected in title tags and metadata. If you do not yet know what these are, they are what appear on Google before a user clicks onto a website. See the example below.
Each new page was inclusive of H1, H2 and H3 headers which help search engines understand page content. The overall word count was increased so that more keywords could be included, whilst being mindful of the user experience. If content is needlessly wordy or boring, users will “bounce” off the website which can have negative SEO results. A careful blend of headers and paragraphs meant that the content was easily scannable, web users preferred manner of content consumption.
A breadcrumb was established so that additional pages with keyphrase titles could be introduced. This would cast a wider net. For example, Litigation -> Personal Injury -> Road Traffic Accidents -> Bicycle Accidents.
Each page was accompanied by a fully licenced image that I compressed and supplied with metadata.
I instructed a web development agency, Wibble, to build a new website using technical SEO best practices. We combined our respective expertise to ensure the best possible results during the design, development and testing phases.
The developers worked to improve structured data and to introduce an SSL certificate. They provided me with XML sitemap which I then used to inform Google on the best way to crawl the website. You can find out more about the technical SEO element of this project in this technical SEO case study.
It was essential that the website was lightning fast and this can be aided through smart media compression, website security and hosting. A slow website is often penalised in SERPs by Google and a speed score of 90+ on mobile is desirable. You can check your own website speed at PageSpeed Insights, the software used by Google to determine your website’s speed.
Despite the law firm having a domain that is older than 10 years, there were few backlinks. A backlink is created when a third party website links to your website. Search engines treat these as citations and the more you have from high authority websites, the more trusted your website becomes. I made contact with many of the firm’s stakeholders and requested backlinks from them. One example of that is that I contacted a journalist who wrote an article on a local news website that referenced the law firm and politely asked if they would amend the article to include a backlink. I also signed the law firm up to several high authority directories such as Yell who provided backlinks for free. To ensure Google was aware of the firm’s details, I made improvements to the Google My Business listing.
The firm also made use of my social media management which provides high authority backlinks.
Speak with a legal marketing consultant about SEO for solicitors and law firms
Every SEO strategy is different and based on the problems faced by a law firm and what the tailored solutions to overcome them are. If you would like to speak to a colleague or me about SEO for your firm, we offer free initial exploratory consultation. Contact us to book yours. Or, if you would like to know more about these services, visit SEO For Law Firms.