As someone with a number of lawyers in his circle of friends, the topic of attorney SEO marketing comes up a lot. The marketing efforts generally fall into one of three categories:
A) Online marketing is an after thought, with little if any resources dedicated – perhaps a law clerk or intern is told to manage internet marketing among other tasks & responsibilities
B) Online marketing is outsourced to a cheap SEO firm. This has actually worked out pretty well for us, as one of our specialties is Google Penalty Recovery. I have assisted a number of law firms in getting penalties revoked that were caused by inept overseas SEO firms.
C) Online marketing is placed in the hands of “The best law firm SEO company” in the US ~ A Mega corporation that is probably considered too big to fail, but consistently does. If you have this at the bottom of your website ““Law Firm Marketing by FindLaw, a Thomson Reuters business”, then your firm is probably one of the 107,000 results that show up when doing a Google search for that phrase. How does it feel to be one of 107,000? Just how does one get an edge over the competition?
For those who don’t put any resources into online marketing, or put it in the hands of an intern, wise up. You can invest in a professionally managed and effective local SEO program for about the cost of a Yellow Pages Ad. In fact, getting online phone directory listings is included in the price of a local SEO campaign.
For those investing in “cheap” offshore SEO, brace yourselves. The same tactics that worked a couple of years ago (and might even be working today) can and will evoke a Google Penalty, today. Know the Google Webmaster guidelines: https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/35769?hl=en and don’t assume they are being followed.
For those tied in with the “big boys” there’s a lot of things not to like. They hold YOUR domain name in THEIR registrar account. They use a proprietary Content Management System (Website setup) that is not particularly SEO friendly. They host your website on their servers.
According to a former FindLaw employee they are understaffed and are notorious for placing duplicate content across the websites they manage. In my personal experience, we deliver more than 2X the services for the same price as FindLaw. The most recent firm that converted from FindLaw.com to MeasurableSEO.com is experiencing a 139% increase in Google organic traffic alone compared to the same period a year ago.
The bottom line: Having a strong online presence is not a luxury and you owe it to yourself and your firm to do it right. Even paying a premium price to a high profile firm will not guarantee success.