Attorney SEO: Optimizing Your Website for Better Google Verdicts Staff Profile Picture
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In recent years, the legal industry has been gradually realizing the impact of the digital sphere. In fact, in a 2023 survey conducted by the American Bar Association, 87% of the respondents indicated that they had a website for their private law practice. For a quarter of these sites, web maintenance was delegated to a marketing agency or consultant instead of an internal employee or team.

A considerable number of law firms and lawyers in the survey also hired outside experts to handle their other marketing needs, both digital and traditional. These include print and social media marketing, promotion via direct mail and TV ads, and PPC advertising. Another method they employed is search engine optimization for attorneys or attorney SEO, which has become one of the most popular ways to gain online traction.

In that regard, this law firm SEO guide explains the fundamentals of this particular marketing strategy and presents several ways a lawyer or firm can use it to their advantage.

What Is Attorney SEO?

Attorney SEO: Optimizing Your Website for Better Google Verdicts

Attorney SEO — also known as lawyer SEO, law firm SEO, or legal SEO — is a digital marketing strategy that aims to make a lawyer’s or law firm’s website more visible in search engine results. Players in the legal industry can use attorney SEO to reach their target audience and potential clients, improve their reputation, and boost their authority in their area of practice.

SEO can help a legal website achieve better ranking on search engines — especially Google — through a variety of techniques. These include utilizing the right keywords, creating relevant content, and inserting high-quality links. Making use of different SEO tools and technology is also a common and effective method for enhancing one’s online visibility.

Understanding Google’s SEO Algorithm

Attorney SEO: Optimizing Your Website for Better Google Verdicts

Google’s algorithms pertain to a set of rules that dictate the relevance of websites based on a user’s search query. In other words, it is a system that determines how a page ranks in search engine results pages or SERPs.

Just like most writing and language style guides, Google’s SEO algorithm is not a fixed formula; it is constantly evolving and becoming more complex. In its current iteration, some of the factors that Google takes into account when ranking sites on SERPs are:

  • The average length of time spent by users on a web page.

  • How often a website publishes new content.

  • The number of organic or natural links to a page.

  • The number of internal links on a page.

  • How mobile-friendly a page is.

  • How fast a page loads.

  • The appearance of relevant keywords and their placement on a page, including in the meta title and description, page title, and header tags.

What Are Keywords, and Are They Important?

Keywords, within the context of SEO, are the terms that indicate a web page’s main subject. They are usually based on search queries, which are the words and phrases the target users enter into search engines to find what they are looking for.

Knowing which law firm keywords to use is important because they serve as the backbone of attorney SEO. This can be done through keyword research, a process that can help in determining a term’s keyword difficulty and search volume. Keyword difficulty pertains to how hard it would be to rank at the top of SERPs using a specific word or phrase. Meanwhile, a keyword’s search volume indicates how often it was used as a search query within a given period.

During the keyword research phase of the lawyer website SEO process, you may encounter:

Keyword Type



Composed of one- to three words that provide a very general description of a topic. As such, it has high search volume and keyword difficulty. 
Example: Brooklyn family lawyers


Has at least four words that tend to be more specific than short-tail keywords. 
Example: workers’ compensation claim deadline


Used to learn general information or find the answer to a question. 
Example: how to file for divorce


Used when researching a service or product they are planning to procure. 
Example: best personal injury lawyers in Detroit


Used with the intention of buying a product or procuring a service. 
Example: hire Fresno DUI lawyer


Highly searched but only during a specific period. This may be due to a cultural phenomenon, a trend, a seasonal event, or any news. 
Example: Succession TV show how accurate inheritance law


Evergreen, which means its relevance does not drop over time. 
Example: how to make an estate plan


Includes a location so a user can narrow their search to one particular area. 
Example: “Bend Oregon immigration attorney.”

In the past several years, various tools and platforms have emerged to help with keyword research. Some of the most popular ones are:

  • Ahrefs: This tool’s features include a keyword generator, a keyword rank checker, and a keyword difficulty checker. It can handle keyword research not just for Google but also for other sites, such as YouTube. Ahrefs has free and paid versions.

  • Google Keyword Planner: This free tool can obtain keyword usage data from Google itself, including location-specific, short-term, and paid keywords.

  • Keyword Tool: One can generate different types of keywords from this platform, such as long-tail, geo-targeted, and language-specific words and phrases. Like Ahrefs, Keyword Tool has free and paid versions.

  • Moz Keyword Explorer: Some of this SEO tool’s features are keyword generation, keyword difficulty scoring, and SERP analysis. Moz Keyword Explorer offers free and paid plans.

  • Semrush: Semrush is a platform that enables users to generate and analyze keyword, link, and website data. It also has free and tiered paid versions.

Is Content Quality Relevant to SEO?

Creating and optimizing legal content is part of an effective law firm SEO strategy. Publishing blog posts, product and service pages, and other website sections can improve a page’s SERP ranking because it ticks the boxes of the Google algorithm in several ways.

For one, high-quality content establishes a website’s authority in a particular legal field or topic with the help of the terms generated from keyword research. The addition of these keywords also makes the content more relevant to the target audience. Consequently, a page with a high level of authority and relevance has more chances of being referenced and linked by other websites.

Note that high-quality legal content does not just refer to written texts; it also includes diagrams, images, and videos, among others.

Basic SEO Practices for Attorneys

Attorney SEO: Optimizing Your Website for Better Google Verdicts

SEO for law firm websites entails a variety of processes. Some key tasks one should expect to deal with are on-page, off-page, and local SEO.

On-Page SEO

On-page or on-site SEO refers to enhancing a page’s content to achieve better SERP results. It involves crafting and optimizing different elements, such as the following:

  • Keywords: Insert keywords organically within the appropriate sections. For instance, the primary keyword should appear in the first or second paragraph of a blog post.

  • Meta title and description: These elements should pique the interest of the target reader and serve as a web page’s summary. They should not go beyond the recommended character limit to avoid cropping.

  • Page title: The page title should include the primary keyword.

  • Header tags: Adding headers — especially if they contain relevant keywords — is a good idea for easier navigation and better structure.

  • Main text: The main body of a web page should have high-quality, relevant, and updated information about the subject.

  • Images: Include images with tags and place them strategically within the page for better reader engagement.

  • Internal and external links: Include both internal and external links in the page. It is recommended to only add external links from reliable sites.

  • Page URL: Your web page’s URL should be relevant to the subject and be as simple as possible.

Off-Page SEO

Off-page SEO, another method to gain a higher ranking on search results, focuses on the strategies that can be applied outside a website or web page. Backlinks, which are links to your website that appear on other sites, play a major role in off-page SEO.

This is because link building can translate to better online reach and more site visitors. People are more likely to trust a link found on reliable websites and pages since using the link means they have already attested to its credibility.

But how does one gain high-quality backlinks? Some effective methods involve:

  • Creating high-quality and optimized content that can be referenced by other sites.

  • Reaching out to media outlets, online publications, resource websites, and other platforms that can include a link to your page or site.

  • Being part of local and national associations that list their members on their websites.

Local SEO

Local SEO is used to improve a web page’s SERP ranking within a specific area, making a business more noticeable to nearby people who are in need of legal services.

Local SEO for lawyers and law firms can involve different tactics and technologies, such as Google Business Profile. This is a tool that manages one’s presence on the platform and its related pages, such as Google Maps and Google Search.

Using Google Business Profile effectively means claiming and updating one’s own listing to ensure the accuracy and relevance of information. The details typically included in a profile are one’s business name, complete address, contact numbers, and business hours. Remember that having correct and updated contact information makes it easier for a potential client to reach you.

Other local SEO strategies include using local keywords and posting localized content.

Advanced SEO Strategies for Attorneys

Attorney SEO: Optimizing Your Website for Better Google Verdicts

Some SEO tactics — schema markup implementation and voice search optimization, for instance — require a higher level of expertise and are therefore best supervised by a law firm SEO advisor or done by an attorney SEO specialist.

Schema Markup

Schema markup is a descriptive code or microdata added to a web page so search engines can interpret its content accurately. Pages with schema markup have a greater chance of being highlighted in SERPs. As a result, users will take notice of them more and are likelier to click on them instead of other sites.

Because not many businesses are utilizing schema markup to improve their visibility on the web, implementing this code into your web pages can give you an advantage over your competitors.

For law firms and attorneys, including schema markup on their websites’ about pages, blog posts, and review sections can be beneficial. They can also add local business structured data for better Google listing display.

Voice Search Optimization

According to a 2022 NPR report, 62% of adult Americans use voice assistants on their tech devices. These voice assistants — including Amazon’s Alexa, Apple’s Siri, and Google Assistant — can serve as tools to conduct online searches. In line with this data, it has become more crucial for businesses to employ SEO strategies for their websites to improve their visibility and ranking in voice search results. 

In the case of lawyer and legal firm websites, voice search optimization can take different forms, such as:

  • Using long-tail keywords, especially those that begin with a question word, such as “how,” “what,” “when,” and “why.”

  • Including local keywords for searchers who are looking for legal services within their area.

  • Performing technical SEO, which involves improving a website’s mobile-friendliness through better loading speed and responsive design.

Monitoring and Improving Your SEO Performance

Attorney SEO: Optimizing Your Website for Better Google Verdicts

The SEO process does not conclude right after the implementation of appropriate strategies. It is also important to track a website’s performance after it has been optimized to determine which tactics produce results and which ones can be dropped. Typically, the outcome of SEO becomes visible after three months and then becomes more apparent after a year.

One of the best SEO tracking tools available for law firm and lawyer websites is Google Analytics. It can keep tabs on various metrics, such as:

  • Unique site visitors.

  • Average length of sessions.

  • Bounce rate, or how many site visitors only viewed one page.

  • Conversion rate, or how many times specific actions (such as signups or ad clicks) are done by site visitors.

Other SEO tools, like Semrush and Moz, can also be used to monitor user engagement metrics.

Sometimes, tracking a site’s performance can reveal that there is still room for improvement to achieve one’s intended results. In this case, it is wise to carry out regular keyword research, on-page and off-page SEO, and performance analysis.

Case Studies: Successful SEO Campaigns in the Legal Sector

Attorney SEO: Optimizing Your Website for Better Google Verdicts

LawRank is an attorney SEO agency based in Los Angeles that has helped several law firms and legal professionals boost their online presence.

It was able to improve a client’s SEO performance through the use of competitive keywords, high-quality content, and a rebranded name and website. In fact, the client experienced a 236% rise in Google Business Profile calls, a 6,000% increase in site visitors, and a higher ranking on SERPs.

In another case, a personal injury lawyer’s website achieved top local search rankings through backlinks and quality web content. It also saw a 100% increase in both contact form submissions and Google Business Profile calls.

Outsourcing SEO: Is It Ideal for Lawyers?

Attorney SEO: Optimizing Your Website for Better Google Verdicts

As seen in the case studies above, hiring the right legal SEO experts is a type of business expense that can eventually pay for itself. It is ideal for legal firms and professionals who would rather focus on serving their clients than handling the marketing side of their business.

Benefits of Hiring a Professional SEO Agency

Some benefits of outsourcing SEO to an agency include saving resources like time and money. Because SEO agencies are already well-versed in the process, they would be able to streamline solutions in line with your needs. Moreover, you won’t have to pay for expensive SEO tools yourself because the best agencies already utilize them in their operations.

Another thing that legal SEO agencies have is extensive experience, which translates to subject expertise and proven solutions.

Determining Where to Spend Your SEO Budget

Outsourcing SEO services can be quite pricey. It can also involve different types of fee arrangements, including hourly and per project. However, choosing the right fee arrangement does not solely depend on which has the lowest upfront costs. You should also consider the length, priority, and complexity of the project based on your end goals.

Additionally, for a smooth experience, your SEO budget should go to an agency with excellent problem-solving skills, first-rate attorney SEO knowledge, and professional and pleasant conduct.

Make Your Site Google-Friendly with

If you are in need of tailor-fit SEO solutions, you can check out’s list of agencies and professionals who can handle search engine optimization for lawyers and law firms.

FAQs on Lawyer SEO

How much does lawyer SEO cost?

According to 2023 figures, the average cost of SEO services can be summed up as follows:

  • Project-based rates: $2,501 to $5,000

  • Hourly rates: $75 to $100

  • Monthly retainers: $500 to $1,500

Why is lawyer SEO expensive?

Lawyer SEO can be quite expensive due to the field expertise required from SEO professionals and the complexity of the processes they deal with. Continuous performance monitoring and content development are also part of the services one pays for.

How often should SEO be done for a legal website?

Since legal SEO is not a one-and-done undertaking, optimizing a website every month or every couple of weeks is recommended. Note that the frequency of this task depends on how big a website is.

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