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What Google’s Consumer Insights Report Can Tell Attorneys About Online Legal Marketing

by | Jan 21, 2018 | Marketing, SEO

“What people look for provides a window into their interests, needs, and wants,” writes Natalie Zmuda, editor of Think With Google, in a recent report on new consumer behaviors.

“We found that people are more curious, more demanding, and more impatient than ever before.”

Here’s what attorneys can take away from Google’s new consumer insights.

Insight: Your potential clients continue to be curious, and they’re using Google to answer their questions.

“People have long turned to search to satisfy their curiosity,” Zmuda writes.

This year, people turned to Google Search to look up information on topics from Bitcoin to the Paris Climate Agreement.

This search behavior extends to your law firm’s potential clients, too.

Your potential clients have turned to search to answer specific questions about their case or problem. They’ll continue to do so in 2018.

This should drive home the importance of creating a large library of high-quality content on your law firm’s website. That content should be directly relevant to your potential clients in your practice area(s). It should also be relevant to the geographic area where you practice.

Longtail searches: addressing your potential clients’ specific questions

Keep in mind the value of longtail searches that your potential clients are likely to conduct.

Sometimes, attorneys fall into the trap of believing that potential clients only (and often) search for basic terms such as “Personal Injury Attorney Phoenix,” or “San Antonio Car Wreck Lawyer.”

But often times, your potential clients conduct longtail searches.

They’re looking for specific information. They’re conducting searches with phrases that are highly specific and descriptive. (Example: “How much money can you get for a lawsuit if your car is totaled by a UPS driver in Phoenix?”)

When these highly specific searches are addressed by a large volume of high-quality content on your law firm’s website, they make your site more likely to be found in results pages for relevant queries.

They also make your potential clients much more likely to convert:

The information that you’re providing directly addresses the kinds of questions they ask, and that information builds trust and confidence in your work.

“People are being more specific than ever,” Zmuda writes, “and they still expect to get useful, relevant information.”

Insight: Your potential clients expect highly relevant search results.

Thinking about the geographic area where you practice — and incorporating that into your content — is critical to successful content marketing.

Potential clients ask locally-focused questions and sometimes even append “near me” to the end of their searches with an expectation that Google will return local results.

Even when potential clients don’t search for location-specific information, Google will often try to return local results.

Do your law firm website pages have a local focus?

This insight from Google should highlight the need for local focus in your content.

How do people talk about particular locations or landmarks in the geographic area where you practice? What can you tell your potential clients about local laws, rules, and courts? How can you give your content a local spin when possible?

For more information on how to build local pages that are search-friendly and that resonate with your potential clients, see our podcast: “The Importance Of Local Pages For Law Firm Web Marketing.”

Insight: Your potential clients want answers and they want them now.

Zmuda notes that “people expect to be able to find exactly what they’re looking for, wherever and whenever they’re looking for it.”

“Expectations will only continue to rise,” she notes. “People will ask more detailed questions and want more personally relevant answers, and they’ll want it all faster than ever before.”

Increasing expectations on the part of consumers might worry some attorneys.

Your potential clients will continue to raise the bar, wanting more useful, detailed content. But Zmuda herself notes that these expectations can be met by providing “an abundance of information.”

Attorneys who recognize the power of content marketing — and create an aggressive, content-centric marketing plan — will be those who are prepared to meet the needs of their potential clients, grow a thriving business, and dominate their competition in 2018.

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