When you have a query nowadays, how do you find the answer? Do you ‘Google it’? If the answer is yes, you’re in good company. Over 3.5 billion searches are logged on google, every single day!
Search engines, such as Google, work by matching what is typed into the search with content found online. For example, with legal concerns, searchers may make enquiries such as, ‘how do I get a divorce?’ The search engine will then trawl through all the relevant pages available online and give a list of best ‘hits’ based upon content, reliability, usage, and so on.
In the situation described above, having a blog, and writing about common legal problems, will ensure you are higher on the list available to searchers, leading to more hits on your site and potentially more clients.
Blogging can be an exceptionally influential tool when used well, but it takes time, commitment, and effort in order to maintain a blog that offers useful advice, is informative, and relevant.
Before committing to creating a blog for your website, you might like to consider the following points:
The Benefits of Blogging – for Lawyers
There are numerous benefits to writing a legal blog for your firm. Lawyers can keep abreast of legal news, showcase unique talents or fields of expertise, all while improving Google ratings. The points below offer more advice on certain benefits:
• Save time & money – writing content on your blog that answers Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) such as, how much will my divorce cost? How do I hire a lawyer? And, what are the legal implications in setting up your own business? will save you time when dealing with initial enquires from prospective clients. You can direct them to the relevant blog and they can find all the information they require.
• Online visibility – lawyers always need to generate new clients and to do this you must have a visible online presence. Google is extremely influential, but if clients can’t you online in a standard search, it makes finding new clients more difficult. However, if you have a blog that contains useful, relevant information for clients, lawyers, and those in need of legal advice, it will frequently be shared between friends, family and associates, which increases your online visibility.
• Advertising & announcements – a blog is the perfect setting for showcasing your skills, expertise, successes and knowledge. If your firm was featured in a big case, and hit the headlines, then let everyone know through your blog. You can add links to online news reports that mention your firm, upload images of charitable work or events that your firm have engaged with, and showcase new employees and their particular talents.
• Develop your skills – writing a blog is ideal practice for speaking plain English and avoiding too much ‘legalese’. Keeping your writing simple will attract more visitors as they can understand what is written. Blogging will also help keep you up-to-date with legal developments, new legislation, and current legal issues.
Blogging Guidelines for Lawyers
Most lawyers aren’t experts in web design, but if you are seriously considering creating a blog there are a few points worth considering before you take the plunge.
A website is like a virtual office which displays your level of professionalism, your expertise and education, and your opinions. If you think you might need help with the technical side of blogging, enlist the services of a professional to get you started. However, if you’re confident you can go it alone, consider the following points:
• Mobile-friendly websites – the majority of people around the globe now access the internet on a mobile device. Your website must be mobile-friendly if you are to appeal to all users. Make sure it is simple, legible, and responsive. Use simple, every-day language that enables users to access your information. Consider using a professional translation service if you are likely to attract clients from abroad.
• Contact information – must be clear and visible from the outset. Once a user has decided they need your services they want to contact you as simply and quickly as possible. ‘Contact Us’ forms should be easy to use and contain all the relevant fields for enquiries such as, a touch phone number that direct-dials.
• Education – is vital in creating a blog that is relevant to readers. Prospective clients can get to know you, understand your specialities, and check your professionalism. Blogging is great for building client trust, and promoting your personable qualities.
• Solve queries and problems – there is no denying that there is already an exceptional amount of law related information available on the internet, and almost every subject has been thoroughly covered. However, this shouldn’t put you off blogging as your opinion, views, and expertise may be just the thing that someone is looking for. Your competitors may have been blogging for years, or have specialists in every field to write key blogs, but that doesn’t mean that your blog won’t be relevant or useful. Stick with writing about what you know to start with and expand as your confidence grows.
• Incentives – are a key way to encourage new clients to take the step towards engaging your services. Offer a free initial consultation, money off for liking and sharing your social media sites, or a no-obligation quote. Throughout your blogs and the rest of your website you should have frequent ‘calls to action’ banners or buttons that link directly to contact pages for ease.
Search Engine Optimisation for Lawyers
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is what happens behind-the-scenes with websites and search engines. If you’re unsure of how this process works, this section will give some basic tips and explanations.
• Domain Authority (DA) – this is ranked on a 100 point scale. Sites that have more relevant, quality content will rank higher than others.
• Content is king – this is often quoted when referring to SEO. It basically means that the more web pages you have, the more bogs you post, and the better quality your content, the more likely your site will be promoted by search engines.
• Links – external links, to other reputable companies, will give your website greater validation on search engines. Likewise, internal links (to other pages or blogs on your own site) will increase rankings. Blogging increase the opportunity to link more frequently.
• Company confidence – can be increased through providing relevant, trustworthy, and current information through your blogs and your site in general. Search engines will rank you on your content and favour sites with solid information.
• Web Traffic – can be increased through frequent publishing of quality information. Blogging is a great way to achieve this, as you can blog as often as possible thus updating your site each time. When you upload a new blog it should be promoted on your social media sites and this encourages people to read your blog, visit your website and utilise your legal services.
• Keywords – can be tricky to get right. Using the same ones time and again in the same article can cause you to be penalised by search engines. However, using long tail keywords, through quality, original content, will increase your chances of higher rankings.
• Bounce rate – this is the rate at which visitors to your site use your pages. If they visit more than one page and stay on your site for some time, your site is assumed to have quality information and will rank higher on search engines. If you have poor information visitors will quickly leave your site and your bounce rate will go up.
• Content marketing – blogging is a form of content marketing. By directing your blogs to your target audience you increase your chances of succeeding with your online marketing. Creating the right SEO conditions will enable you to have a successful website.
Blogging can be a useful marketing tool for lawyers, and with time, effort and consistency can lead to increased client interest, making it a good return on investment.