Login | April 09, 2020

Google for lawyers 2020, part 1: Updates on SEO

RICHARD WEINER
Technology for Lawyers

Published: March 6, 2020

Success in Google is essential to generating new client leads. The closer one is to the top of the search page, the more likely that a potential new client will click and call. Lawyers can, and do, game that system by paying for advertising—upwards of $20 to $50 per click.
But if you don’t want to pay for Google advertising, there are a number of ways to climb the rankings.
The next couple of columns will go over how you can rise to the top for free, by just tweaking what your website already does in accordance with what actually makes Google a legit lead generator for attorneys.
The first requirement is knowing something about search engine optimization (SEO)—and the first thing to know about SEO for lawyers is that professional businesses like attorneys and doctors have a particularly refined form of SEO.
As per usual, Google search has updated its algorithm at the beginning of 2020. The algo continues to look at content, and points searchers to content-heavy, particularly original content-heavy, pages.
This is good news for lawyers who write a lot of blogs (or who hire people to do so).
But, beyond the endless search for original content, Google looks to see if the site belongs to a professional, like a lawyer or doctor. If so, Google imposes some further requirements to bring the page up the list toward the top.
Google considers pages for professional businesses to be “Your Money or Your Life” (YMYL) pages. YMYL pages have a substantial impact on the physical, financial or psychological health of the person searching, and so are held to a higher standard.
That higher standard breeds another acronym: E-A-T, which stands for “expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness.” So beyond just being original, law firm websites are categorized for their “beneficial purpose.” The more beneficial and purposeful, the higher up on the page.
You get Google’s beneficence by being as precise and utilitarian as possible in blogs, landing pages, practice area pages, and so forth. The more of an authority it looks like you are in as narrow a field as possible the better.
At the same time, the content has to be readable. Be precise about what you do without resorting to legalese.
For the complete overview of how to do all that, go here:
https://static.googleusercontent.com/media/guidelines.raterhub.com/en//searchqualityevaluatorguidelines.pdf


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