Sunday, April 29, 2007

Submit your website to a lawyer search engine

Don't forget to submit your website to the free lawyer search engine, Targetlaw. There is no fee to be listed in this search engine, however if you do not submit your law firm website you will not be included in the search results.
To paraphrase Bluto from Animal House "Submit your website, it don't cost nothing"

Family Law Search Terms

One of the biggest challenges I see most lawyers make, is using legal jargon on their lawyer website. This may look prestigious and intelligent but it does 2 things that are not good:
1. It often intimidate the average web visitor who is doing a quick lawyer search to see if someone can help them for their legal issue.
2. You lose on on search terms your potential clients are using to find attorneys.

In the estate planning world I see the following search terms being used on Google, Yahoo, MSN etc:
"how do I split my 401k?"
"can I get a divorce if my wife is cheating on me?"
"how does a house get split during a divorce?"
"stocks get divided in divorce?"

Notice there are not the terms: assets, retirement, equity, portfolio, division, and infidelity.

How do you put these rich and popular search terms on your website? Three suggestions:
1. Interdisperse these terms in the content of your existing website.
2. Have a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page where you answer these natural language type questions
3. Get testimonials (anonymous of course) from your clients stating that:
"I thought that I would lose my house and 401k during the divorce, but attorney X helped me keep them"

Until next time.


Thursday, April 26, 2007

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Google Page Rank

"What is Google Page Rank and how do I find out what my page rank is?"
This is a question that I am asked on every third or fourth meeting I have with attorneys that are trying to increase traffic to their website.

First, Google Page rank is a proprietary ranking done by Google which determines the "power" of a certain website. A lot of what goes into this ranking is the idea of incoming links to your website. On a basic level the more incoming links you have (other websites, blogs, or forums that reference your website address) the higher your Google page rank. The ranking of a site that references your site has a lot to do in your own Google page rank. For instance, if your site is referenced on the Yahoo! home page (Google page rank of 9) this is worth a lot more towards your page rank than your cousin's reunion website (Google rank of 0).

Second, in my opinion, lawyers get too caught up with page rank. My advice is to get your website listed on other legitimate sites. Do not cut corners and get your site listed on a less than reputable site. This can do more harm than good. Incoming links is only one aspect of getting listed high on the search engines.

Third, how do I find out my legal website Google page rank? Very simply, down load the Google toolbar. This toolbar will let you know the page rank on every page you visit. I personally use this toolbar for other stuff as well such as an easy search, autolink, and pop up blocker.

By the way, the only website that has a ranking of 10 (1 to 10) is Google. Funny how they would rank their website the highest...

Until next time,


Monday, April 23, 2007

Natural Language to get Longtail Searches

Many website owners, lawyer included, are often times overly concerned with showing up on the first page of Google for a few "keywords". It becomes almost and ego thing. I've heard "I have to show up on the first page of Google every time for 'New Jersey criminal attorney'"
This might not be a bad thing to keep in the back of your mind, but to focus only on these types of searches can be detrimental to your overall website look, feel, and content.

Another type of search is what is called a "long tail search". This type of search is a phrase that will never be exactly duplicated and is unique. For instance "I was pulled over in avalon nj and blew a .08" The odds of this search ever happening again is astronomical. These types of searches make up about 20 percent of all searches with keywords making up the other 80 percent. Having your lawyer website show up for these types of searches is good for 3 reasons:
1. It is not as hard to show up for these searches, because no one would or could have keywords match this search syntax. This makes it much less competitive
2. These type of searchers tend to need an attorney now and are more likely to be fairly well informed about the law.
3. It is much easier to confirm a case came through the internet by looking at your traffic report. If only 1 visitor found your website with "I need to write a terms and conditions for my website" and someone calls you with this question, then you know that it came from your website.

How do you get these kind of searches. The answer: "Natural Language" Some of your website content should have plenty of keywords that you are targeting, but at least 50% of your website should have content with no regard to keywords. Examples are articles you have written or descriptions of cases you have won. If you take this advice, you will get more targeted leads calling you for legal help. You never know exactly how potential clients will do a lawyer search.

Until next time.

Donald Imm

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Keep you site up to date

I am constantly surprised to find out when I visit my law firm clients, that their website has outdated information listed. Attorney's have left, practice areas have changed, even address changes are not reflected on the website.
Remember, your website is a billboard for you potential clients and existing clients. Make sure it is up to date. I also recommend you mention any recent hires, position openings, recent court wins, or articles. This helps keep the content of your lawyer website fresh for the search engines and can help your ranking.

Until next time,


Monday, April 16, 2007

Geographic Area Description

Most search engines such as Google, MSN, and Yahoo do not necessarily know what towns, counties, states, and cities are closeby to your law firm. For instance, if you are an attorney that practices family law in Carrollton, Texas, a prospective divorce client may not be able to find you if they query under "Dallas Texas Family Attorney"
What to do? Try to determine what cities and towns are near enough to your practice where clients would feel comfortable driving to see you. You can always go to
to take a look at the towns and cities nearby.
At the bottom of every one of your webpages insert:

"Attorney John Doe serves divorce, custody, and family law clients in the following areas, Dallas, Carrollton, Richardson, Lewisville, Fort Worth, Irving, Dallas County, and Denton County"
Until next time,

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Incoming links to your legal website, very important

In my last post I talked about having relevant and well written content on your website to attract potential clients. This is important.
As we all know, Google, has proprietary algorithms in their search engine to present the best (in Google's opinion) websites that fit a particular query such as "boston car crash lawyer".
Having content on you website which coincides with this query is important. But what happens if 1,000 other websites have similar content? How do you move your lawyer website to the first page of Google, Yahoo, MSN,, or Targetlaw?
One way is to have other website reference your website. This gives weight to website. Google (and the others) look at incoming links as validation that your website has credible information that other websites think is important. The more incoming links, generally the better your search engine ranking will be.
How do you get incoming links to your website? Here are some suggestions:
1. List your website in your local bar association listing
2. List your website with any other association you may belong to such as Atla etc.
3. Write articles for websites such as Ezine with a link back to your website.
4. Start a blog, such as this one and write posts linking back to your website.
5. Get listings (the least expensive) in Findlaw,, Yellow pages which include your website listings.
6. Ask other attorneys to put your website on their website and return the favor.
7. Be leery of inter linking services, this can get you into more trouble that it is worth. Only have your website listed on credible websites. You do not want to be associated with unethical or black hat websites

Like anything else, this will take time. But it will be worth the effort for the next time your potential client is doing a lawyer search for someone just like you.

Until next time.


Friday, April 13, 2007

Content, Content, Content on your website

Ever wonder why some lawyer websites are showing up more than other attorney websites? One of the reasons is content (the written word) that is on the more successful websites.
Should you right a 100 page these on family law and then upload it to your website? Probably not. However you do want to have natural language inter dispersed with key words and phrases. For instance:

"As a personal injury attorney, Mr. Doe has helped his clients realize and earn the settlements they deserve from such tragic occurrences such as car accidents, truck accidents, dog bites, slip and falls, and medical malpractice."

This may be a little heavy on keywords, but this type of content will be more likely to show up than: "Attorney X practices personal injury law"

Write good content early and often. If you happen to take on a case in a slightly different speciality, write a quick paragraph about that specialty and post it on your website. Continue to do this and your website will become the marketing engine you want it to become.

Until next time,


Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Law Information blog on lawyer search

It seems like the vertical lawyer search engine is starting to have a little buzz. A law information blog, has recommended as an effective tool to research attorneys and their practices. Instead of a typical legal directory such as Findlaw or, Targetlaw allows users to research attorneys before they contact them.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Case lead from the internet, what to do

I recently spoked to one of my lawyer clients who is doing very well from his criminal law website Baltimore, Maryland. I looked at his website's traffic reports, which looked decent, but not spectacular. The website was getting a lot of visitors with Google queries such as "Baltimore law on drunk driving", "what is the bac in md?" etc.

Why is this attorney getting more business than you average bear? He makes it a point to call when he gets an internet lead. Not send an email. Visitors to attorney websites usually need help fast. The first attorney to actually call a lead will usually convert that lead into a client 80-90 percent of the time.

The early bird gets the worm!

Until next time,

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Legal Matching Services

I have found that there are four ways for a lawyer be found on the internet. They are:
Legal Directories such as Findlaw and
Search Engines such as Google, Yahoo, and MSN
Vertical search engines such Targetlaw
Legal Matchmaking Services such as Legal Connection by Findlaw and Legal Match

I want to talk about the matching services today. These services use pay per click to attract intenet searchers to matching webpage. On this webpage, there are usually 8-10 practice areas such as immigration law, personal injury, criminal law, and divorce law. The visitor chooses the practice area then fills out a lengthy form about the particulars of their legal issue. At this point the user will either pick from a group of sponsoring attorneys in their area, or they will be contacted by sponsoring attorneys.

If you are a lawyer looking at one of these systems, consider:
1. What is the cost of the service versus an average lead/case is worth
2. If you need high end cases, this service is not for you
3. If you want a volume of average to poor leads, this service might be for you
4. You must contact the lead immediately before any of the other sponsoring attorneys do. The first contact usually gets the case. Phone calls are the most effective.
5. Is your practice in a popular consumer legal area such as family, criminal, bankruptcy, personal injury, employment, or immigration? If your area of law is copyright law, this service is for you
6. What is the service's commitment to getting you leads?
7. If you are not getting the type of lead you want, complaining to the company can help increase the number of leads as the service provider will increase their pay per click in your practice and geographic area.
8. If the service asks for a picture, get it professionally done
9. Have a good tagline

Until next time.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Lawyer Seach Engine

I recently found a lawyer search engine. The nice part about this search engine is that it only contains attorney websites. No directories, no matching services, no informational portals. Just lawyer websites. Every firm should make sure that their website is listed. You can go to the site and submit your website.

What I really like about this attorney search engine, is that it is the search experience that end users are used to. Directories are somewhat cumbersome and old fashioned. Matching services such as Legal Connection and Legal Match work for certain types of law such as immigration, employment, criminal, drunk driving, divorce, and bankruptcy.

Until next time.