Learn From 2021 Trends, To Help Your Firm Grow in 2022
The past two years have been very challenging for all of us. Businesses have suffered financial setbacks as customers have changed buying patterns and staying at home has become the new normal. The legal profession has not been immune to these changes. With fewer people at work, there were fewer workplace injuries. With more people at home, there were fewer accidents on the highways. With moratoriums on bill collection, there have been fewer bankruptcies. Very few areas of the law have gone unaffected. A shift occurred throughout 2021 and that certainly made things better, but to make sure that your firm is optimizing its opportunities to secure new clients, it is important to know how people are searching for legal advice and representation.
As we head into 2022, we want to take a quick look back at the popular search trends and the most popular keyword search terms people used to find an attorney.
Google Search – Near Me Searches
One trend that has seen an increase in its usage is the term, “near me”. Used as an extension of a user’s search terms, it has made the optimization of your local business listing more important than ever. As you will see below, with some practice areas, such as bankruptcy, divorce and estate planning the term is added more than others. Although the use of “near me” is more popular in businesses such as restaurants, shopping malls, etc. it is still readily used in law firm searches as well and should not be ignored.
Google Search – Snippets
Google has made a concerted effort to make sure that a user’s experience is as effortless and efficient as possible. One way of doing this is by serving up “snippets” of websites for easy exploration. Snippets are bits of website data that correlate with a search term. Much like general SEO algorithms these “snippets” allow the user quick access to relevant information.
One way of helping your website to appear is to create lists. An example of this might be: “How to prepare for a divorce” or “5 things you should do after a car accident”. The creation of these list can help push you to the top of a search page.
Google Search – Local Service Ads (LSA’s)
Another trending area is Local Service Ads or LSA’s. These ads are directed at websites that have completed the Google screening and appear at the top of a page for the most popular legal searches in the more populous geographies. Personal injury, divorce and car accident lawyers are popular places to appear and although they are considered paid advertising, it is based on a per lead model instead of a per click model. If you haven’t submitted your attorneys to Google for the screening certification and you would like to learn more, you can go here to get started.
Together with an understanding of LSA’s, snippets and “near me”, one should be well versed in what keywords people are searching for and how they are using those keywords. There are nuances about search that attorneys and the public often disagree on. For example, most individuals with a JD behind their name refer to themselves as an attorney. But the more popular term for a legal professional is lawyer. People also search for Car accident more often than auto accident. In fact, the average monthly searches for “car accident lawyer” is 90,500 as compared to “car accident attorney” which is 49,500.
The above example is an extreme difference, but it doesn’t always work out that way. Preparing your website for everything is the key to a well optimized website and the best chance for a positive ROI from your internet marketing plan. Hiring the right company to make sure you are in the best position to grow your practice in 2022 is imperative. Firms that do not adopt the changes to search trends are going to get left behind by smaller, more aggressive, better prepared law firms. Knowing and adapting your website to what the public is searching for, no matter your personal preference, is key to a successful program.
Here are search phrases that you should be incorporating into your marketing program with fresh content either on your website or your Google My Business listing every month and their monthly search traffic:
- Personal injury lawyer near me – 222,000
- Divorce lawyers near me – 110,000
- Lawyer personal injury – 74,000
- Car accident lawyer – 90,000
- Car accident attorney – 49,500
- Personal injury attorney / lawyer – 60,500
- Divorce attorney near me – 40,500
- Divorce lawyers – 33,100
- Accident attorney – 27,000
- Truck accident attorney – 18,100
- Truck accident lawyer – 27,100
- Car accident attorney – 18,100
- Auto accident lawyer – 22,200
- Estate planning attorney near me 14,800
- Estate planning lawyer – 8,100
- Bankruptcy attorneys / lawyers 18,100
- Bankruptcy attorney / lawyers near me 22,200
- Workers’ compensation attorneys – 12,100
When hiring a lawyer, a person should want to hire the lawyer that best suits their legal needs, no matter their proximity to their current location. You need to build a marketing program to meet your client’s expectations thus increasing your odds of growing your business in 2022. Don’t let firms with less experience get more clients just because they have better marketing programs.
If you do not feel that your website is consistently showing up on Google for the keywords that match your practice areas, then give us a call. We offer a free website evaluation and will help you put together an effective marketing plan.