When you think of your law firm’s SEO strategy, your goal is to appear as number one on organic searches, right? If you land at rank 1, page 1 for a search term, haven’t you won?
Perhaps not so surprisingly, that’s a trick question. There’s more to SEO strategy than simply getting you to the top position on organic search. The assumption that rank 1, page 1 holds the highest value in search results can only be true if users browse results linearly from top to bottom.
However, users don’t do that. With so many rich features — such as featured snippets, people also ask, paid results, and more — users now browse in a zig-zag pattern, a bit like a pinball. People are clicking on rich results at high rates. While rank 1, page 1 will always be a necessary goal to strive for, there are other ways to take advantage of the search results page that Google offers us today.
What law firms can do: Optimize
A law firm’s SEO goal should aim to optimize for the variety of ways users interact with search results, from featured snippets, rich snippets, paid results, and more.
Google’s featured snippet is a box at the top of the search engine results page (SERP) that aims to highlight content from a website that does the best job answering the searcher’s question. Depending on the query, there may be two snippets that appear.
Optimize your content to appear in a featured snippet by structuring your content in short paragraph form or bulleted lists. Make the information in your content as straight to the point and clear as possible, so that a reader can immediately get the answer, or most of it, within a few sentences. If you’re answering a legal question, answer it in about 25-50 words, which is the average length of a featured snippet. It helps to pair your content with a picture, as this helps increase your chances of landing as a featured snippet.
People also ask:
The “people also ask” section of the search results is a helpful feature that Google uses to include multiple angles on a single question, to provide the user with more content to enhance their knowledge on a topic.
This is a great place for your law firm to appear. The best way to optimize for “people also ask” is by revamping your FAQ content. Include frequently asked questions at the end of your blog posts or invest more time into your FAQ page.
Pay-per-click (PPC) is an advertising strategy in which your paid ad appears in search results, and you pay for every click it receives. A strong PPC campaign should bring in more traffic based on specific keywords, and attract the right kind of clients you’re looking for. At CLM, we’ve managed hundreds of ads that convert. We’ve found that the best ones include a call to action, use specific keywords used in the search, and state the benefits for the potential client.
Google offers the local pack whenever a user searches keywords with a local intent, such as “personal injury lawyer in Seattle.” The local pack contains the three physical addresses deemed most relevant to the search. As one of the features that dominates the SERP, your law firm needs to prioritize its Local SEO.
To optimize for the local pack:
Remember that optimizing your law firm SEO for rich results takes time, strategy, and expertise. Custom Legal Marketing prioritizes all aspects of how our clients should appear on SERPs, and builds comprehensive strategies that help users find them, and convert.
Cristina Fríes is a MA in English/Creative Writing from UC Davis (2019), and is a legal marketing strategist and content developer for CLM. Her interests include creating compelling marketing content, writing books, and traveling the world.