Some attorneys ask us whether a larger volume of pages on a law firm website leads to a better ranking with the search engines.
There’s a belief among some attorneys that merely having more pages on their law firm’s website will mean better visibility in search results. As a result of this belief, they create lots of pages on their site, many of which have little useful information on them. Some are then surprised when the creation of more pages doesn’t yield the results that they’re looking for.
Having more pages on your law firm’s website can mean better rankings, but only when those pages meet some particular criteria. The pages that you create on your law firm’s website need to achieve some specific things to do well with Google. Here’s what you need to know about creating pages on your law firm’s website.
Why simply creating more pages on your law firm’s website won’t help with search visibility
There is no direct ranking benefit in search results from having a particular number of pages on your law firm’s website.
“Just having a number of pages doesn’t give you a boost,” said former Googler Matt Cutts. “[…] Just because you have a large number of indexed pages [you don’t] automatically get a high ranking. That’s not the case.”
It’s true that the more pages you have on your law firm’s website, the more opportunities you create for a page to be returned in search results when a potential client conducts a search related to the page’s content. But the likelihood that a potential client will find the page when they conduct a related search is dependent on the quality and detail of the page’s content — not merely because that the page exists.
Google’s business model depends on being able to return the best quality results for each query a search user conducts. Online, the best results are those pages that provide a great deal of information related to a search user’s query.
A page with little or no information is unlikely to be returned in search results when a potential client asks a question of Google. Google considers these kinds of pages to be of low quality and unlikely to meet the needs of search users. Because Google has an interest in making sure that its users receive the best answers to their queries, pages that do not contain high-quality content are often relegated in search results.
(To learn more about what constitutes high-quality content, see this blog post on Google’s latest advice for webmasters.)
Here’s an example. Imagine that a potential client for a DUI defense firm searches for something like: “Can I be charged with a DUI in Atlanta if I was taking medicine that was prescribed to me by a doctor?”
Now imagine two different pages that this potential client could receive for such a search.
The first is a page that only says, “The Office of John Smith has extensive experience with DUI defense. Attorney John Smith has defended hundreds of prescription drug DUI cases. If you’ve been charged with a DUI, contact the Office of John Smith.”
The second page details:
- How prescription drugs can affect driving
- Whether taking prescribed medication is a legal defense against a DUI in Georgia
- What can happen when someone mixes alcohol with prescription drugs
- Issues that can occur with blood tests and prescription drugs
The second page is more likely to be returned as a relevant result for this search because the content, when written with a high level of detail, will help the searcher answer their question.
It is not the page alone that increases the likelihood of ranking well for a particular query, but more importantly, the content on the page.
What do I need to know about creating new pages on my law firm’s website?
When it comes to web pages, Google values the quality of the page over the quantity of pages on your law firm’s website.
There are law firm websites with hundreds or even thousands of pages that rank well for a variety of searches. However, ranking well for various searches is the byproduct of creating high-quality content on those pages — not just because the attorney created hundreds of pages.
When you create a new page on your law firm’s website, have a plan to develop that page with rich, educational content that benefits your potential clients. Before you create a new page, consider whether you have enough information (or will in the future) to turn the page into a valuable educational resource for your potential clients.
You should also avoid splitting your content across more pages for the sake of creating more pages. As Google’s John Mueller points out:
“Of course, if you have more things to say about the niche that you’re active in, by all means, create more great content for it, but if you’re thinking about just splitting your existing content out across more [pages], that’s unlikely to be a good strategy for search.”
To learn more about creating better evergreen pages and blog posts, see: