Google is redesigning its Google AdWords package. Its new focus is going to be on “micro-moments,” which it judges mobile users will go through on their way to a purchasing decision. This move is all part of the company’s ongoing focus on mobile search which has recently moved into a concentration of effort on its local search technology. Will these moves influence paid search and advertising strategies? The answer is yes. If you have a law firm PPC budget, it is time to start noting the moves that are afoot. Although not all of the New World Order of local search is in place, it is clear that a new direction in marketing is emerging, and it is time to explain how you should be targeting your advertising effort to avoid pouring money down the wrong channels.

Search Engine Land has a lot of advice on online advertising developments this week. Search Engine Watch and Search Engine Journal also have some informative articles on online advertising that are worthy of your attention.

Dictionary of ad buying: key terms and acronyms

If you don’t engage in advertising online at present, this guide to ad buying terms should come in handy. The structure of this explanation of the jargon is so well done that it will actually lead you into creating a simple paid marketing strategy for your law firm. The “before” section is particularly useful if you haven’t got a clue where to start with online advertising.

Why Your AdWords Competitors are Making More Money Than You

The main thrust of our research into paid SEO methods this week is to get value for money, so this article hits our target exactly. This piece speaks more to those of you who are already running an online advertising campaign, but wonder whether it is really getting you the volume of new clients for your law firm to justify the budget. As with any business strategy, you may wonder whether your efforts would be better rewarded by spending just a little more, or by just giving up, because it seems the budget increase needed in order to actually win more customers can’t be justified by the small increase in revenue.

This article comes up with some good ideas about how an advertising agency chasing a certain type of customer created new offerings to enable it to pick up those customers that were attracted by its adverts, but didn’t really want to sign up for the package it was pushing. Maybe you could just create an advice shop that doesn’t offer full services, but that also doesn’t take much time to cater to. You could earn revenue from people who make casual inquiries after seeing your ads – at least you could recoup the cost of your advertising. The article focuses on identifying the types of business each keyword attracts, and methods to badger inquirers into signing up for legal services.

Download our free guide and learn about the importance of key performance indicators (KPIs)

From waste to win: watch how a simple change affects AdWords performance

This piece of advice follows a similar vein to the article above. You should be looking at which keywords channel particular types of customers into your law firm’s offices. Maybe you are attracting people you don’t want. Maybe you should find out, and look for tweaks that will get you inquiries from clients that you do want. This article takes you through that process.

The 4 Cs: A recipe for precise remarketing campaigns

Remarketing is a wonderful, wonderful tool for the badgering recommended in the second article above to get inquirers to take the plunge and hire your legal services. Although remarketing is a term with which many digital marketers are becoming familiar, not many people know how to use it effectively, and you probably have no idea how to tailor it towards people who have shown interest in different pages of your law firm’s website. Susan Waldes knows, and she shares her tips on targeting your remarketing to make sure you know precisely which of your services or presentations interested each visitor, so you can pummel them just on that issue when you pester them through remarketing.

Think cross-channel to build stronger marketing

We have pushed the idea of cross-channel marketing before here at SEO Trends. Last week we outlined ideas of using real-world events and issues in your local area to feed through to your website, and ideas on using your social media presence to draw attention to your local community involvement, again, to direct people to your law firm’s website. This Search Engine Land article is just a pass-through to Digital Marketing Depot where you download a whitepaper. However, it is worth the effort of reading through the report, because these methods amplify a small law firm PPC spend into a wide online presence, and they will catch the attention of more potential customers.

Case study: Attorney Uses SEO to Save $12,000+/Month in PPC Spending

Bankruptcy attorney halts $150,000 in annual pay-per-click spending,

and still increases lead flow

This multi-office, 4-attorney bankruptcy firm had decent website traffic when we took over their search engine optimization work 15 months ago.
But they were also highly dependent upon pay-per-click advertising, spending over $12,000 per month.

Major savings, better results

Today they spend next-to-nothing on pay-per-click ads, yet their lead volume has grown.  Here is the traffic and conversion comparison:

15 months ago Today % Increase
Users 576 1,341 132.8%
New Users 552 1,283 132.4%
Sessions 693 1,745 151.8%
Conversions 55 145 163.6%

How we did it

The key to this firm’s growth in traffic and conversions was increasing the number of keywords they rank for.
When we began work 15 months ago, the firm ranked for 551 keywords. Today the firm ranks for 1,722 keywords.

More important, the keywords that the firm ranks for are ones used by searchers ready to retain a lawyer. The firm ranks #1 organically for several critical keywords, and ranks #2 locally, which puts the firm into Google’s 3-pack of local listings.

The value of a Google 3-pack listing

The 3-pack appears above organic listings, and its click-to-call feature is especially attractive to searchers using smartphones.  Depending on the specialty, half to two-thirds of searches for lawyers are performed on smartphones.
Consequently, lawyers with small marketing budgets should devote their initial efforts into ranking locally so they get into the 3-pack.

Want help?

Whether your goal is to (1) rank higher locally or organically, (2) improve the quality of your leads, or (3) convert more of your website traffic, we can help. We have proven techniques and content for lifting your results in all three areas.

Digital marketing combines traditional marketing methods with new technology. It often seems that advancements in technology open up new methods of marketing, but actually most of them are just new channels to perform tried and tested marketing techniques. Whatever your marketing and business goals are, you would benefit from employing a range of channels. This list of five different methods should give you some useful advice on how you can diversify the digital marketing effort of your law firm. In this week’s SEO Trends report, you will find out about some of those new channels for old tricks. This selection of advice comes from Search Engine Land , Search Engine Watch, and Search Engine Journal.

Dynamic remarketing: not just for retailers anymore

I don’t think anyone had ever written off dynamic remarketing as only being an option for retailers. However, anything that gets the topic of remarketing into an SEO Trends report is a good thing. The technique of dynamic ads is particularly useful for law firms that have a number of practice specializations. The idea of a feed of products would work well for a law firm that has a range of services in their practice specialty. For example, a firm specializing in corporate law could list a series of business-related legal services to be advertised to potential clients. To get the most out of remarketing, it is important to record exactly which of your services a customer looked at when visiting your website. For this reason, it is useful to have a range of pages, each of which speaking about specific services. That will help you work out which service that website visitor is looking for – you can’t get that information if your site only has a home page.

Do 50% of adults really not recognise ads in search results?

Previous research into paid ads in search results suggested that people avoided them. This also ties in with studies that show Web users actively resisting advertisements, even to the point of refusing to look at the area of the page that has an advert on it. This factor is a big problem for companies like Google, and you have probably noticed that the search provider has altered the format and location of paid adverts on its results pages several times over the past few years. If this research paper is correct, Google’s work has been worth the effort. Apparently, half the population can’t even spot adverts in search results any more. Even the author of this article finds those results hard to believe. However, this research was carried out by Ofcom, a British statutory body, so there are no commercial fact-bending incentives driving the results of the study – it’s credible. So, if you have (rightly) been avoiding paying for ads in search results, maybe it’s time to reconsider that strategy for your law firm’s advertising spend.

Download our free guide and learn about the importance of key performance indicators (KPIs)

How to Create Amazing Ads for Facebook and Twitter

Everybody says that social media is a great channel for marketing. There is no reason why the power of Twitter and Facebook should not be used to channel clients to law firms. However, not many legal services providers try to advertise on these outlets. Maybe it seems too frivolous a platform for law firm advertising. However, if you have tried and failed at social media marketing it may just be you didn’t set up your ad properly. This article leads you through the process of posting an advert so you can avoid the painfully familiar errors that are illustrated at the beginning of the piece.

How to succeed with pay-per-call marketing in a mobile-first world

Pay-per-call marketing is a very powerful advertising channel. Basically you put an advert on someone else’s site and you only pay them for the number of people who call that number. In the old days you would be able to track the ad that the caller saw by giving out different numbers for different ads and logging the number of calls into each. With click-to-call technology on mobile-accessed Web pages, tracking the source of the call is even easier. You have to download a report in order to read these recommendations, and by doing that you get into a list for an email campaign. However, that’s not such a bad thing, because the follow up emails you will get recommend other digital marketing studies that will help you to develop you law firm’s digital marketing campaign.

Best Practices to Get More Pop-up Clicks

Everybody hates pop-ups, but Web marketers still use them, because they work. Things are a little better these days when the pop-up comes in the form of an overlay panel that the user can dismiss rather than appearing in a new window. Pop-up forms are particularly useful for getting people to subscribe to your mailing list. That gets them into your email marketing campaign – a very powerful method of marketing, which is still astonishingly underused by law firms.

You might find that your SEO strategy gets you lots of visitors to your law firm’s site, but none of those visitors ever make a call to come to your offices for an initial consultation. Attracting people to your site is the first step in winning customers. However, you have to be careful how you get those visitors and pay attention to what signals your site sends out to search engines. There is no point attracting dog lovers to your corporate law firm’s site, and you can’t get any business out of illegal immigrants if you sell copyright protection. Your conversion rate will be higher if you make sure you filter out irrelevant members of the public with strong targeting.

The number of people that visit your website is only relevant if they are the right people. You need to track down the people who are likely to want your services and then funnel them through to an actual contract. Search Engine Watch,  Search Engine Journal, and Search Engine Land all have interesting news on the topic of targeting and we will look at their recent postings in this SEO Trends report.

6 Reasons Why Cause Marketing is Different

Getting involved with charity work, advocacy groups, or pressure groups that work in your area of the law is a great idea to get access to targeted marketing channels. You probably don’t need to do much research to find the groups that tie in with your legal specialization, because you most likely already keep an eye on groups that pertain to your practice work. Getting involved with these groups, or running a campaign in partnership with one will help you target the people who need your services.

How to use purchase intent for more effective keyword search

This article is filed by Search Engine Watch in its Pay Per Click subject category. Targeting your appeal for advertisements paid for on a click through basis is a vital money saver. You don’t want to have to pay for a lot of traffic that is never going to convert to customers – it’s a waste of money. Proper keyword selection is the central tool of getting the right traffic to your site either through search results or PPC advertising.

Download our free guide and learn about the importance of key performance indicators (KPIs)

Facebook ad targeting: every possible option available 

Facebook pretty much invented targeted marketing on the Internet. That’s why they have all of those “changes in your service agreement” notifications that no one ever reads. Yes, every piece of information you put into Facebook belongs to them, and they do that because those attributes that users enter about themselves make targeting possible. Although you may think that’s pretty lousy from a civil liberties angle, it’s great for Web marketing. Unfortunately, Facebook just made selecting attributes for targeting a whole lot harder. The infographic in this article will help you work your way through the maze of categories when targeting demographics for your law firm’s Facebook ads.

Earned engagement and fragmented audiences: kickstart your process in the enterprise

To every rule there is an exception. You may be one of those people that reads cookie cutter advice on marketing, only to finish realizing that your practice seems to fall between the cracks. If your practice specialization caters to a hard-to-reach demographic, you may find that Facebook, advocacy groups, or ads on popular websites don’t get you any business. This article should help you work through a tailored strategy to try to find your audience. Even fragmented markets can be targeted – it just takes a little more imagination.

How to increase your remarketing ad conversions in five steps

Remarketing is also known as retargeting. It is one of those things that the Internet does better than real life. This is the creepy concept where you do a search for a flight, but don’t buy anything, then every website you go to seems to advertise that airline you searched for. It’s a little like stalking, but it works. Find out how to hound your potential clients into submission with this easy guide.

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