July 6th – July 12th, 2015
Any lawyer knows that reputation, authority and influence are essential attributes for attracting and retaining clients. In the world of SEO these terms have specific meaning and it will greatly enhance your digital marketing effort if you can harness these concepts for your law firm’s website. “Authority” pertains to the relevance and subject importance of a site, which helps boost the rankings of other pages that link to them. In digital marketing, “reputation” usually alludes to the opinion of ordinary Internet users as expressed in online comments and reviews. “Influence” refers to the number of followers an individual has on social media and the ability to direct opinion. Search Engine Journal provides some interesting guidance on these issues this week. We will also investigate news from Search Engine Watch and Search Engine Land to find out more on these subjects.
The third section of this report relates to this week’s SEO Trends theme, because it explains “authority.” This idea has become a ranking factor for Google, so it is important to be selective about whom you associate your website with. When you seek out links into your law firm’s Web pages from other sites, you need to check that the site and the page the link will appear on contains keywords related to the law and your areas of specialization. Not only that, but you should investigate which sites have links into your potential link provider, because if that site has links from unrelated sites, it will have low authority for your keywords and won’t provide you with much link juice.
It stands to reason that good reviews and on-site testimonials will attract customers to your law firm and bad reviews will lose you potential clients. However, this factor of digital marketing, which is termed “reputation management,” is even more important in the online world. Google keeps enhancing reputation as a ranking factor, so you need to keep track of what people are writing about your firm in order to get up Google’s results pages. As this article explains, good reputation management can also improve your chances of getting quality links from sites with authority, thus boosting your rankings even further. Poor reputation management will doubly harm your rankings because it will also damage the authority of your site.
This article appeared in Search Engine Journal last month, but it is well worth reading because its advice hasn’t aged. The piece breaks down the issue of reputation management into five digestible chunks. If you are starting to consider a reputation management strategy for your law firm’s site, this is a good guide to get you on the runway.
Now we move on to the topic of “influence.” Google has announced that it will index tweets on Twitter and count mentions in social media towards rankings. However, it seems they haven’t got very far yet with the task of tracking all tweets. Given Google’s growing interest in social signals as ranking factors, it would be a useful exercise for you, or one of your law firm’s leading lawyers, to gather a following on Twitter, Facebook or Google+. Having a large following on one of these sites makes you an “influencer.” However, the article doesn’t explain how many followers you need in order to qualify for that title.
Brittany Berger works for a company called Mention, so this article she wrote for Search Engine Journal contains a plug for that company’s tools. However, it is worth clicking through the link about influencer scores at the Mention site and also explore some of the tools for analyzing influence that are described in the article.