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5 Search Engine Marketing Tips for Law Firms 

5 Search Engine Marketing Tips for Law Firms

Search Engine Marketing, or SEM, is the cornerstone of any law firm’s digital marketing strategy.

Almost every one of your prospects will begin their research on Google, so to get more new business, it’s critical to invest in this channel. It’s even more important to do it correctly, because each click can be very expensive, so you can waste a ton of money if you make mistakes.

Today, we’re going over 5 tips to improve your ROI for your SEM and make it work for your firm.

1. Advanced Keyword Research

Any digital marketing strategy worth the name will require keyword research in order to build a comprehensive SEO strategy.

While some keywords like “Personal Liability Lawyer” are obvious, these can also be very expensive to buy. Researching “Long-tail keywords” – searches where your prospects are using many keywords to search for law firms, is a must for lowering your acquisition costs.

Long-tail searches can often be cheaper than basic ones, because they usually have less competition, and there are lots of them — 50% of all searches contain 4 or more words. Use tools like SEMrush, Ahrefs, or Moz to identify long-tail keywords and phrases related to your specialty.

These tools can analyze search volume, competition, CPC, and SERP (Search Engine Results Page) features for potential keywords, to further assist with your overall SEM strategy. For specific campaigns, metrics such as keyword difficulty, search intent, and seasonal trends can increase your reach.

If this sounds too daunting, consider enlisting a digital marketing company, focused on law firms, like Lead Science.

2. Negative Keyword List

You want potential clients to find your site, but you don’t want to waste money on consumers who are not really looking for your services. Making sure that your firm isn’t showing up for searches that you don’t intend to, is absolutely necessary to make SEM a profitable channel for your law firm.

Every week, you should be looking in Google Adwords at the actual search phrases for which you are bidding and spending money on clicks. If you see searches that aren’t relevant or are too expensive to justify, then you can include them in your “negative keyword list” for your campaigns.

This is another area where a law firm digital marketing company can save you time and money.

3. Ad Extensions

Ad extensions, the additional links that show up in Adwords for your SEM ads – including structured snippets, callout extensions, location extensions, and call extensions can increase the visibility and click-through rate of your ads.

  • Structured snippets highlight specific aspects of your services.
  • Callout extensions are words or phrases appearing underneath your ad’s description text.
  • Location extensions show your location information.

There are many more, and all provide additional information and not only increase click-through rate but help ensure that those who do are more likely to go from potential client to client. For example, call extensions can dramatically increase the click-through rate for the ads you are running for mobile users.

4. Advanced Ad Scheduling

There will be times and days your ads perform better.

Maximizing ROI means ensuring that is when your ads are most likely to be seen. Advanced ad scheduling allows you to control when your ads are shown. Day-parting and location targeting further fine-tunes when and where your ads appear.

Determining the most effective time will require research and testing, though in most cases you will find a clear 7-day trend. Analyze your data to identify the best days and hours to show your ads and adjust your strategy accordingly. Impression share and click-through rate can help evaluate the effectiveness of your ad scheduling.

5. Ad Group Segmentation

The backbone of any effective SEM campaign is properly structuring your Ads and keywords by Ad Group. Each Ad Group will target different keyword groups, show different ads, potentially use different landing pages, etc.

It is likely that there are different customer profiles and different legal services that your firm wants to market on Google. You want to have a differentiated consumer experience for these different profiles.

For example, if you are running an ad targeting someone who’s been hurt in a traffic accident, you wouldn’t want to send them to a page on your site focused on wage and compensation dispute resolution. That would not only confuse your potential client, but it will lower the Quality Score of your Ad, increase your bounce rate, and lower your return on your SEM investment.

The more precisely you segment your campaigns, the more precisely you can target and optimize them. Use metrics like cost per conversion and conversion rate to evaluate the effectiveness of your ad group segmentation, and make adjustments accordingly.

Lead Science is your SEM solution.

Without the appropriate attention and expertise, it can be expensive and wasteful for law firms to invest in Search Engine Marketing. With these best practices, SEM can become a cost-effective way of building your business.

Take a free demo today at LeadScience.com and see how our team of experts can leverage SEM for your firm.

Justin Robinson-Prickett
Justin Robinson-Prickett
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