Lawyer SEO is one of the best ways to boost your online presence and increase your conversions in this digitally-driven world. According to data from Datareportal, 81% of people searched online for a product or service in July 2020. In other words, if you want your legal practice to thrive, you need to invest in SEO.
While marketing concerns are nothing new for most lawyers, SEO comes with a few unique challenges of its own. With search engines like Google becoming increasingly smarter, your SEO needs to improve as well. Seemingly small SEO issues can jeopardize your entire law firm marketing strategy, resulting in long-term consequences.
Let’s briefly understand the four most common law firm SEO obstacles that you will likely face.
1. Ensuring Perfect Keyword Optimization
Keywords are the bedrock of your law firm SEO, which is why your keyword optimization needs to be perfect. Keyword cannibalization, where different types of content on your site, like blog posts and landing pages, compete to rank for the same keywords, isn’t good for your SEO.
Google will show only one or two results from your website for such search phrases. It will probably devalue the most relevant page from the search results, bringing you less qualified leads and, therefore, lower conversion rates.
But most importantly, you will be competing with your own keywords for prime search engine real estate. Furthermore, it will force you to split the CTR between multiple pages, which dilutes the authority of your domain. It will also dilute the value of your critical backlinks.
That’s why you need to find out if your site suffers from keyword cannibalism and fix the issue. One way is to restructure your most autorotative blog post as a landing page. Combining two or more pages to create one unique page can also help fix this issue. Deleting less relevant and poorly performing content can help as well.
2. Internal Linking for Better Navigation
Internal links and anchor texts allow your users to check out the relevant content or information on your website quickly and easily. However, if your internal linking is poor, your users are less likely to further engage with your website. They will simply check out the landing page and leave, increasing your bounce rate significantly.
As you may already know, not all pages on your website are made equal. While some will attract more visitors, others will result in higher conversions. Your internal linking should be such that it takes your users from high-visiting pages (high-ranking) to high-conversion ones. It will help increase your overall conversion rate.
As a result, you have to make sure all your links are working. You should find links that aren’t working (those with “404 Page Not Found” error) and redirect them using 301 redirects. However, the redirects should be towards highly relevant pages. If there aren’t any, it’s better to remove the link permanently.
3. Missing or Poor Meta Descriptions
When it comes to SEO for lawyers, meta descriptions are largely ignored. Nearly 3/4th of top-ranking pages (74.98%) have meta descriptions. That’s why you can’t afford to miss or write poor meta descriptions for your web pages.
Google will often truncate meta descriptions that are longer than 155-160 characters. So, keeping the length shorter than this limit is a good idea. You should also make sure to include your focus keyword in the meta description. Try to include it at the beginning, so that even if Google truncates your meta description, the keyword won’t get lost.
Your meta descriptions should also be legible and readable. The best way to write a meta description is to treat it as an advertising copy of your web page. Make sure it describes your web page perfectly and encourages users to click on your URL. Avoid using duplicate or similar-looking meta descriptions, because mass duplication can land you in hot water.
4. Avoiding Duplicate Content
Duplicate content is also a major lawyer SEO challenge. You can find different online tools to identify duplicate content on your website. Duplicate content can be caused by a variety of factors. For example, using both HTTP and HTTPS protocols, and not setting preference for your domain, blog tags, and RSS feeds, can result in duplicate content issues. Once you set your preference, however, this issue will be fixed.
Most Content Management Systems or CMSs also use functionalities such as sorting parameters that can lead to duplication issues. You can crawl your website and apply “crawl directives” to set crawling preferences for the said content. Using a “robots.txt” directive can prevent Google from crawling certain files and directories on your sites, which can help fix duplicate content issues.
While lawyer SEO allows you to boost your online presence, it is easier said than done. It comes with a few unique challenges of its own, including keyword cannibalization, the lack of internal linking, poor meta descriptions, and duplicate content. While these four tips will most certainly help you, hiring an experienced and professional digital marketing firm like Gorilla Webtactics will take your SEO strategy a step forward. We can help you create the SEO strategy that works. Call us today at (612) 470-9877 or contact us online to know more.