How To Achieve A Perfect 10 Avvo Rating
What Is Avvo?
Avvo.com is an online directory that includes 97% of attorneys in the United States. The site rates individual attorneys based on their Avvo profile and then publishes those ratings to sites like Google, Yahoo & Bing.
In their own words:
“The Avvo Rating is our effort to evaluate a lawyer’s background based on the information available in an attorney’s Avvo profile. We create the rating using a model that considers information the lawyer has included on their profile in addition to information we collect from public sources like state bar associations and lawyer websites. Any information that affects the Avvo Rating is visible in an attorney’s profile.”
Why Should I Set Up An Avvo Profile?
After receiving $71.5 million in funding in July 2015, Avvo stated that their goal is to “increase Avvo brand awareness through continued marketing initiatives.” In short, this essentially means that Avvo’s audience is large and is quickly getting larger. As an attorney, you likely already have an unclaimed profile on their website, and Avvo will likely be the first place a potential client will see you, so you need to make a good impression. (FYI – Avvo will only give numerical ratings to lawyers who have claimed their profiles. Unclaimed profiles are designated as “no concern.”)
What do the ratings mean?
- 10 – 9.0 Superb
- 8.9 – 8.0 Excellent
- 7.9 – 7.0 Very Good
- 6.9 – 6.0 Good
- 5.9 – 5.0 Average
- 4.9 – 4.0 Concern
- 3.9 – 3.0 Caution
- 2.9 – 2.0 Strong Caution
- 1.9 – 1.0 Extreme Caution
Avvo ratings are calculated using a mathematical formula that evaluates the content on an attorney’s profile. However, Avvo will only give credit for what is posted on your profile, so it’s a good idea to keep it updated regularly. Below are all of the sections that need to be filled out in your Avvo profile:
- About Me
- Client Ratings
- Contact Information
- Fees & Payments
- Peer Endorsements
- Practice Areas
- Speaking Engagements
- Work Experience
- Avvo Rating Badge
How To Achieve “Superb” Status On Avvo
Step 1: Sign Up And Claim Your Profile
Head to Avvo.com and search for your name, then click “Claim My Profile.” You can claim automatically using LinkedIn, Email, Facebook or your phone number.
Step 2: Fill Out Your Awards
Adding awards to your Avvo profile will significantly increase your rating. Unfortunately, it is impossible to get a perfect score without at least one award. An important thing to remember when adding awards is to add the date you received the award as well. If you do not, Avvo will assume the oldest possible date and you will receive less credit for the award. The same principle applies to any section in which Avvo asks for a date (publications, speaking engagements, work experience, associations, etc.)
Step 3: List Your Licenses And Practice Areas
If you are licensed to practice in more than one state, indicating so on your profile will increase your score a full point, even if it was in the past.
Practice areas in Avvo are shown in a pie chart to show potential clients where an attorney specializes. If an attorney only practices in one area, for example, Criminal Defense, they may be tempted to indicate that 100% of their specialty is in Criminal Defense. While this may be true, it is a good idea to diversify your ratio in order to show up in more specific search results. For example:
- 50% Criminal Defense
- 35% DUI
- 15% Traffic
Step 4: Record All Of Your Speaking Events And Publications
Attorneys receive a 0.1 point increase for every speaking engagement and as far as we’ve seen, there doesn’t appear to be a point threshold. In order to receive credit for speaking events, attorneys must provide a link with info about the event. If they are unable to provide a link, Avvo recommends they write a press release summarizing the event and then link the press release. The same applies to publications, you will want to link those as well.
Step 5: List Legal And Business Associations
List any professional associations that you’ve been a part of, and remember to include the duration!
Step 6: Get Peer Endorsements
Receiving endorsements from fellow lawyers will boost your Avvo rating as well as establish your credibility within the industry. Peer endorsement stops contributing to your score after 15, but it is still a good idea to get as many as possible. There are three sections in every peer endorsement form.
- How do you know this lawyer?
- For which practice area are you endorsing this lawyer?
- Personal Message
The options for the 1st question are:
- Fellow lawyer in community
- Worked for lawyer
- Supervised lawyer
- Worked together on a matter – 3x more than other options
- Opposing counsel on a matter – 3x more than others
- Family Member
Selecting either “Worked together on a matter” or “Opposing counsel on a matter” for the first question have been shown to increase the Avvo rating 3 times more than any of the other options.
The best way to go about soliciting endorsements from your peers is to first write them a positive review that will be placed on their Avvo profile. Once you’ve done that, Avvo allows the option to bulk send endorsement requests to up to 50 emails with instructions on how to endorse you and your firm.
The Extra Mile: Above and Beyond
These next few steps will not increase your Avvo rating, but they are still worth doing in order to establish credibility with clients.
Step 7: Client Reviews
Client reviews can be requested in the same way as peer endorsements. Although they do not increase your Avvo rating, client reviews are still useful to potential clients and you should work on getting them anyway. One thing to keep in mind – Avvo does not delete any reviews. This includes anonymous and incorrect reviews.
Step 8: Add The Avvo Rating Badge To Your Website
This last step is entirely up to the attorney whether or not they want to do it. Skipping this step will leave your profile at 95% completion which still qualifies as a perfect 10 rating. Choosing not to add the badge will not hurt or reduce your score in any way.
Step 9: Contribute Content On Avvo
In addition to your rating, Avvo will also assign a contributor score to every attorney. You can increase your contributor level by either answering questions on Avvo’s legal forum, or by publishing legal guides to their blog. Once again, these two scores are entirely separate and choosing not to contribute will not affect your Avvo rating in any way.
|Posting one of the first three answers to a question||+10|
|Answering a question within the first hour||+5|
|Agreeing with a recent question’s answer||+2|
|Publishing a guide||+15|
|Participate as a guest blogger||+100|
|Guest-host a webinar||+1,000|
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