If You Don't Build Your Site Around the Right Key Phrase, You'll Be Doomed to Failure

When people are looking for a lawyer, their online behavior is somewhat predictable: they go to Google and type in a phrase like “North Carolina car accident lawyer,” “California sexual harassment lawyer,” or some other combination of region, specialty, and the word “lawyer” or “attorney.” This is why a key phrase specifying this information is the most important SEO element of your law firm's website and can mean the difference between showing up #1 or #2 in Google search results—or being buried on the fifth or sixth page.

How Do You Come Up with the Perfect Key Phrase?

Not all lawyers have an equally insightful grasp about how the web works, especially vis-à-vis Google, so here are some helpful tips for coming up with an effective key phrase:

  • See what your competitors are doing. Is that personal injury firm down the street doing well for “Chicago truck accident lawyers”? That's an important clue to the direction you should be heading.
  • Ask clients how they perceive your firm. The next time a client is in your office, ask him how he would search for your services, knowing what you do. If you gather this kind of feedback from a few people, your key phrase should begin to take shape.
  • Don't be too legalistic. Virtually no one (except a lawyer) would type “premises liability attorney” instead of “slip and fall lawyer” into Google!Are you losing long tail keywords in your search?
  • Check the existing traffic on your site. Your webmaster tools should tell you what key words and key phrases people are using to reach your site; take this information to heart.
  • ”Test drive” your final list. Once you have come up with some tentative key phrases, plug them into Google and see what comes out. This will give you insight into what your competitors are up to!
Ben Glass
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Ben is a nationally recognized expert in attorney marketing and the owner of Great Legal Marketing.