What kinds of searches have you done on Google lately?
If you’ve searched for things like “Pittsburgh weather,” “Restaurants near me,” or “engagement rings,” you’ve conducted some basic keyword searches.
If you’ve searched for things like “What is the weather like in Pittsburgh in January versus in April?”, “Dog-friendly Tucson restaurants near me” or “What are the best diamond engagement ring alternatives?” you’ve conducted a search using longtail keywords and phrases.
Longtail keywords and phrases are something that your potential clients are using, too. And, by focusing on these kinds of searches, you can attract more — and better — potential clients to your firm. In this blog post, we’ll talk about the longtail: what it is and why you should focus on it.
What is a longtail keyword or phrase?
So what, exactly, is the longtail?
The longtail involves keywords or key phrases that create highly specific searches. They’re a common way that people conduct searches, and they’re a reflection of how your potential clients use search engines to find attorneys.
Some attorneys assume that potential clients find attorneys by conducting basic keyword searches (i.e., “Divorce attorney” or “Personal Injury Attorney Colorado”), but that is not always — or even usually — the case.
Many potential clients are in the research phase of their case or matter, and they’re going to want to learn about elements related to their problem. So, instead of searching for basic keywords, they may ask complex questions of Google as they do research.
Why should I develop law firm website content around these types of searches?
In short, it’s worth developing content around longtail phrases because there’s less competition and a higher conversion rate for these kinds of searches.
While there might be fewer searches for a longtail keyword or phrase, those who are making these searches are more likely to be a potential client for your law firm than someone who is searching for basic keywords.
When the search is more specific, there’s generally a greater chance for conversion. There is less competition for these kinds of specific searches, which can make it easier for your law firm to be found in relevant search results. A person conducting a highly specific search is often looking for detailed information that answers that question. If you’re providing high-quality content related to that question, you have a better chance of engaging that potential client. They’ll spend time on your law firm’s website reading information about their case or problem, reading information about you, and learning what they should do next.
For example, let’s imagine that a potential client for a personal injury firm was in a wreck. Instead of searches such as:
- “Personal injury attorney Colorado”
- “Denver car wreck attorney”
You’re more likely to see searches like these:
- “Who is at fault in a rear-end car wreck in Denver?”
- “Can a driver hit in a rear-end collision in Colorado be held responsible?”
- “What do I do if I was hit by a driver without insurance in Colorado/Denver/Arapahoe county?”
Isn’t it important to rank for basic keyword searches?
“We found that people are more curious, more demanding, and more impatient than ever before,” writes Natalie Zmuda, editor of Think With Google, in a recent report on consumer behaviors. “People have long turned to search to satisfy their curiosity.”
Your potential clients are curious and researching elements surrounding their problems.
Basic keyword searches aren’t necessarily a good reflection of searches that potential clients conduct. Yet, because there is a belief that this is how all potential clients search, these terms have a high degree of competition among attorneys.
Unfortunately, this often causes attorneys to focus exclusively on ranking well for these kinds of searches, which then causes them to miss opportunities with many potential clients who are not searching this way.
Some attorneys rank well for basic keywords searches; however, these rankings are usually a byproduct of creating an extensive library of high-quality content around their practice area(s) that addresses the questions that clients have.
Learn more about longtail searches for law firms
Developing content around longtail search queries is valuable for small law firms that are focused on content marketing. To learn more about the idea of “the longtail,” see: