Most people that are up to date with the latest tech news are aware that Google recently updated its search algorithm. But unless you’re avidly marketing your law practice on the Internet, you probably have no idea how the new Google algorithm, dubbed “Hummingbird,” will impact the ability for prospective clients to find your website.
Keeping your website up to date is one of the most important steps you can take to effectively market your law practice and find more clients online. Here are 4 tips to optimize your law firm website for Google Hummingbird that will give you a leg up on the competition and help you get more search traffic so new clients will find you online.
1. Create High Quality Content
“Content” is a bit of a buzzword in marketing these days, but it’s for good reason. More than ever before, Google values sites with high quality content for its search results. Long gone are the days where you could generate search traffic by slapping together a site full of keyword-rich articles written by someone in the Philippines for $2 an hour.
Hummingbird is more intelligent than any previous algorithm, and it’s able to respond to natural language searches better than ever. What this means is that the focus of your content needs to be on relevance. It needs to be about answering people’s specific questions.
So, rather than having a meaningless article that says “bankruptcy lawyer” 50 times, you should think about what your prospective bankruptcy clients would be searching for. Things like “is bankruptcy a good idea?” or “how do I file for bankruptcy?” might be good places to start.
It’s a good idea to include rich media in your content too. Hummingbird favors content that is engaging, so be sure to include videos, images, and infographics wherever possible.
2. Keep it Fresh
Don’t assume your work is done just because you’ve created some high-quality content for your site. It’s also important to keep adding new content frequently and update your older content to make sure it’s still inline with changes in the law and current events.
The bottom line is, Google rewards sites with lots of pages and content that is relevant, up-to-date, and high quality. The more content that you can create about your law practice, the more opportunities you will have to engage with your target clients, and both of those things are favorable to Hummingbird.
3. Share Everything On Social Media
Social media likes, shares, retweets, plus ones, etc. go a long way with the updated search algorithm. Why? Because Google loves high quality content, as emphasized above. The more social media interactivity taking place around a piece of content, the higher the perceived quality in the eyes of the Hummingbird.
While most law-related content is typically not as sharable or likeable as this twerk fail video, you should still be posting updates from your website and blog to all of your social media outlets. Also, it’s more important than ever to add social media buttons on every page of your content to encourage others to follow you and like and share your content. Every little bit helps.
4. Be Mobile-Friendly
Mobile is the future. We’ve all heard it a million times, but Google is now starting to factor it more heavily into its search results. A reported 63% of adult Internet users go on the Internet on their smartphones, and 34% said they prefer using their phones to browse the Internet, according to this infographic.
What this means is that you better make sure your website and all your content is optimized for mobile, i.e. it scales down for the smaller screen and uses larger fonts that are easy to view and read. You may also want to reflect the greater use of mobile devices in your content strategy, meaning shorter articles with more images and videos – stuff that’s easy to consume while on the go.
More and more people are using Google and the Internet in general to find what they need, and legal services are no exception. Follow the tips above and make sure your website is optimized for Google Hummingbird in order to ensure you’re getting the most out of your presence online.