Using Keywords to Help Lawyers Improve SEO Rank

Yoast says, "A keyword, or a focus keyword as some call it, is a word that describes the content on your page or post best. It's the search term that you want to rank for with a certain page. So when people search for that keyword or phrase in Google or other search engines, they should find that page on your website."


A keyword refers to the word(s) you enter into an online search engine in order to find information. For example, typing lawyer into Google's search bar when searching for legal help makes "lawyer" your keyword.


SEO and Keywords


SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. SEO is a way to increase website activity without having to pay for placement. Search engines use SEO to organically rank websites.


One way to increase your SEO is to incorporate keywords into digital data on your website, listings, or blogs. It's best to use the most relatable keywords to your practice to be successful with SEO. Not all keywords are the same.


The Different Forms of a Keyword 


There are three different forms of a keyword: Short-tail, Long-tail, and Location-based.


Short-Tail Keywords


Short-tail keywords can be described as a search term that is just one or two words long. Although web users are likely to start their search with "lawyer" and "legal services," these keywords won't be enough to rank your legal practice at the top of search results.


Why not?

Large corporations and brands often control common short-tail keywords, making it hard for your small business to stand out.


Long-Tail Keywords


Long-tail keywords can be described as complex keywords. However, your practice can stand out in the legal industry by using these complex keywords. Long-tail keywords, such as "intellectual property and copyright law" and "personal injury legal practitioner," can be used by web users, especially when short-tail keywords don't produce the expected results. 


Your findability can improve with long-tail keywords as other law practices not focusing on your area of law are removed from the search results. Plus, search engines will rank digital data higher when you include long-tail keywords specific to your industry.


Location-Based Keywords


Location-based keywords are the easiest to use since they describe the physical location of your legal practice. Are you located in Santa Maria, California? Then make sure Santa Maria, California is included in the digital data of your practice.  


Web users are prone to search for legal practices based on a particular location. This could be their current location or the location where the legal issue arose. Add "Santa Maria" to the digital data of your legal practice, and you will be ahead of all non-Santa Maria legal practices.


Can Keywords Harm Your SEO Rank?


They can. It's not enough to only know "what is" a keyword. It is essential to be aware of "how to use" keywords as well. Some keyword usage can actually harm your SEO rather than improve it.


Keyword Stuffing


When a law practice dumps every possible keyword combination in their digital data, it's keyword stuffing. This keyword usage is not an SEO strategy that can benefit your legal practice.


It is crucial to concentrate on quality keyword combinations, not quantity. Search engines associate high-quality digital data with higher search ranks. Should you opt for quantity, search engines may detect unnecessary or repeated keywords and dock your SEO rank accordingly.


Trying to Distort Search Results


Search engines use complex algorithms to find sites and listings that may be trying to outwit the system. Once discovered, these websites will endure a lower SEO rank. Don't let your website drop in rank because of these black-hat techniques.


Let us give you an example of a type of this distortion. Clients view your website and see 15 attorneys listed at a large, prestigious practice, but they find it's just you in a rundown office when they show up. Even though you can outsource additional attorneys, you've oversold yourself, and this creates distrust. Will clients want to continue to work with you despite the lie? Or worse, was the loss of business and negative review worth the distortion?


Withstanding SEO Methods


Quality equals excellence. Keep focused on honest and engaging digital data for your legal practice's website. Moreover, don't forget that SEO needs time. You didn't open your practice doors to an expansive client list, so don't expect the same when you "open" your digital doors to SEO.