When planning your website, search engine optimization, and online legal marketing strategy, determining your practice area is probably going to be a more difficult task than you originally anticipated. Not because you do not know what you do but rather, do not know what to focus on with your website.
Remember, the goal of your website and search engine marketing strategy is to convince Google’s algorithm that your website is the most relevant for your keyphrase or keyphrases. If you do a search for your region and practice area, you may notice that the attorneys that focus in a particular practice area are generally ranked higher than law offices that optimize for 10 different areas.
There is a value in niche websites. If you want to focus on divorce, family law, child custody, adoptions, etc. these are all relevant practice areas. However, if you want your website to have information on divorce, bankruptcy, personal injury, real estate law, and contract disputes, you can do that, but you need to select a focus.
You might be thinking, “So I need to have a separate website for each practice area?” This is not exactly our point.
If you want to list additional practice areas, that is fine. But your home page content needs to be focused on the practice area that you want to focus on the most.
If you have a group of niche websites for your different practice areas, that is ok and not a violation of Google’s terms. You will have to come up with unique content for each website because duplicating website content will only bring all of your websites down in the rankings.
However, your link building must take place for each domain name. So if you have five domain names and five different websites, you will need to write five sets of press releases and link building content each month. You would need to have five blogging campaigns to link to your five websites. You would need to pay for five directory listings to link to your five separate websites.
On the other hand, if you just have one website with one niche practice area (or practice group) and then offer extensive content in your website’s subpages, you can just have one highly aggressive campaign to improve the search rankings for your secondary practice areas.
When planning 2012’s marketing plan (which you need to start before January) think about the part of your practice you want to grow then build your marketing plan around that practice area.
Let’s start out 2012 with a plan to build a bigger law firm…yours.