When someone has been injured in an accident, how will they even know your personal injury law firm exists? SEO is obviously one possible answer, but hundreds of firms are doing it. How can your firm stand out?
This blog is provided for general information only. Always talk to a laywer or other appropriate professional before making decisions.
Know who you’re selling to.
You’re not just selling to people who have been injured in an accident. That’s part of it, but personal injury lawyer SEO is more nuanced than that.
Think about a grocery store. What type of people shop at one store versus another? How does each store market to different types of people? Within each store, there are also different brands and products that use different approaches to reach different people.
Within personal injury lawyer SEO, you’re trying to reach several broad categories of people.
- People who have been injured in accidents (we’ll break this category down next).
- Family members of people injured in incapacitating or wrongful death accidents.
- Doctors and chiropractors who may be looking to refer patients so they have a way to pay their bills.
- Other attorneys looking to refer cases they don’t handle.
- Insurance defense is a no for most personal injury attorneys, but some people do it. Additionally, if you’re working with an SEO company that doesn’t specialize in personal injury law, you need to make sure they’re not targeting this area.
Next, think about what kind of cases you want and who your ideal client is.
- Do you want to target high-net-worth clients with potential high lost earnings claims?
- Do you want clients who may need to settle their cases quickly?
- Are you targeting certain types of injuries that may be common to specific jobs, activities, or demographics?
SEO isn’t just about keywords but about reaching the right audiences.
Know your search market.
What is a million-dollar medical malpractice case worth? Do you think the related keywords will have a high volume given that those types of injuries happen to one person in a million?
SEO companies like to sell website traffic. Traffic is an easy number to impress you with. Thousands of people visiting your site per day looks good on a graph. What you really want is leads.
- If you’re trying to focus on a niche, you might be entering a low-volume area.
- If you’re looking for high-volume work, like routine car accident cases, and you see high-volume keywords other firms aren’t targeting, there might be a reason.
- If you find a real hole in other firms’ SEO coverage, that can be a great source of cases even if that type of case wasn’t your original plan.
Understand local SEO.
Local SEO is very important to a personal injury law practice. Local SEO is what makes your firm up when people are using searches like “personal injury lawyer” or “law firm” instead of legal issues like “how much can I get for a truck accident case.”
Let’s look at a search result. I added in “chicago” to cover a different area, but if you leave out the location, it will show results closest to your current location.
As you can see, there are a few different types of results shown.
Google Screened (Local SEO Feature)
This is a new feature. For licensed services, like lawyers, Google will check your license on request and show this badge to searches.
To appear here, you need to set up a free Google Business profile. If you use live search results and click where it says Sponsored, you’ll also see that those firms paid to appear in that position.
Search Ads (Paid Advertising Feature)
Next up are the search ads. You know it’s an ad because it says ad.
These firms use pay-per-click advertising to appear at the top of the results for certain searches.
Local Business Results (Local SEO Feature)
Next up are local business results. These are not paid ads. They are firms with free Google Business profiles.
The order firms appear is a secret algorithm that takes into account how close firm is to a searcher’s location, Google reviews, and SEO.
People Also Ask (Organic SEO Feature)
This used to be at the bottom of the search results page but is now even more important.
Click to open a question, and it takes the answer from a firm’s blog. If the searcher wants to learn more, they’ll click on that blog. You want to have these questions and answers in your blog to show up in these spots.
Organic Search Results (Organic SEO Feature)
When we scroll down again, we’re finally getting to the organic search results. These results aren’t ads. They’re the pages Google thinks are best for a certain search. Good SEO helps Google think your firm is better.
Depending on what you searched for, the results might be a law firm home page, a practice area page, or a blog post.
More Ads (Paid Advertising Feature)
As we finally get to the bottom, we see more paid ads. These cost less than the ads higher on the page, but less people see them because not everyone scrolls down.
Related Searches (Organic SEO Feature)
Clicking related searches opens up a new search results page the same as if you typed that search term into Google.
(I cut off the links to go to the next pages at the bottom. Very few searchers ever make it that far.)
Organic search is still important.
You might look at the above and think it’s better to just focus on local SEO and PPC ads. That is a strategy that some firms use, but let’s look at a different type of search.
As you can see, there are no local results, and the organic results are more visible. Additionally, those organic results are (mostly) a one-time cost of creating that page versus paying for every single click you get through ads.
Finally, remember your organic SEO efforts help your local SEO efforts. Local SEO tells Google where you are. Organic SEO tells Google what you do and what local searches you should appear for.
Personal Injury Lawyer SEO Steps for Success
- Figure out what types of cases you want and who your ideal client is.
- Build a basic website covering your practice areas with content that addresses your ideal clients and cases.
- Sign up for your local business profiles.
- Use keyword research to keep expanding your practice area pages and blog posts to increase your organic SEO reach.