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SEO for Lawyers: How to Improve Your Law Firm’s Google Ranking

Are you trying to find out how to appear at the top of Google search results?

Perhaps you have recently started looking into the value of SEO after spending a lot of your marketing budget on PPC or other marketing plans. Or maybe you have tried SEO marketing before, only to be disheartened by seeing a lack of results compared to your efforts.

Fear not. Here, we will look at how SEO can improve your law firm’s website ranking, so you will show up near the top of search engines for searches related to your law firm practice areas. From reading this guide, you will learn the basics of legal SEO that you can use to improve your law firm’s website ranking on search engines and set yourself up for SEO success.

It is important to remember that success in search engine optimization takes time, and your law firm’s website won’t see immediate results.

To give yourself the best chance of seeing success with your law firm’s SEO strategy, you need to work with experts like Gladiator Law Marketing. Our proven track record in law firm SEO and client testimonials highlight how experienced we are at helping law firms like yours rank highly.

The best part? Unlike other SEO agencies, we never work with our client’s direct competitors, so you know our focus is entirely on your law firm.

In total, there are six main aspects of law firm SEO:

1. Keyword research
2. Content marketing
3. Onsite optimization

4. Local SEO
5. Reputation management
6. Performance Metrics and KPIs.

When these six aspects are executed correctly, your website will rank higher than your competitors, leading to potential clients’ choosing to work with your law firm.

At Gladiator Law Marketing, we have helped clients increase their organic traffic by 275% on average over a two-year period.

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Why is SEO for Law Firms Important?

If you have worked in law for many years, you probably remember when a potential client would call you on the company landline, having heard about your practice through a close friend or in the phone book. You may have become familiar with the process, and it might have brought you plenty of success in the past.

However, in the digital era, the way potential clients discover a law firm has changed entirely, and now local SEO is the key foundational aspect of your marketing strategy.

If a potential client needs a lawyer, chances are their first call to action is to search for a local law firm on Google. A recent study from National Law Review shows that over 95% of people seeking legal advice do so online.

Getting your law firm on the first page of online search results is a non-negotiable to compete with other law firm websites. However, being on first page of Google search results is not enough to guarantee that you gain plenty of organic traffic from your local SEO efforts. You must be at the top of the first page; 98% of searchers never click on the second page of Google, and that percentage is still high when you go past the first five results on the first page.

SEO in Comparison to Social Media Marketing and PPC

SEO And Social Media Marketing

Rather than looking at SEO and social media marketing as competitors, you should look at them as two forms of marketing that complement each other.

Social media marketing is a fantastic way to build trust with potential clients and highlight your knowledge and authority in your particular practice area.

After you have managed to draw a visitor to your law firm’s website through your SEO strategy, research has shown that most people’s next step is to check out your social media platforms to see more content from your firm, what comments you receive, and so on.

While it is definitely easier to get noticed through SEO for lawyers, social media marketing also plays an essential role in building brand reputation and authenticity.

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SEO versus PPC

If you’re looking for instant results, you are much more likely to achieve that result with PPC. Pay-per-click marketing via Google Ads is the fastest way to attract more leads to your website, but it is also significantly more expensive.

Often law firms focus on a PPC approach first, but after seeing the initial spike in results drop, they switch to an SEO approach as they grow unhappy with the cost per click from PPC marketing.

SEO is a long-term marketing approach and, over time, will have a higher ROI compared to PPC campaigns.

Google’s Search Engine Results Page (SERP) Explained

Google Search

If you have searched for information on law firm SEO before, chances are you have come across the term SERP once or twice.

SERP stands for search engine results pages and refers to the page that appears with a list of websites when you search for a specific topic. Companies such as Gladiator Law Marketing work hard to help their clients reach the top of the SERP to maximize organic traffic.

The Google SERP consists of several aspects:

  1. Local Service Ads: These service ads sit at the top of the SERP and are pay-per-lead.
  2. Google Search Ads: Below the local service ads, Google search ads are pay-per-click ads.
  3. Local Search Results: Local search results utilize Google maps and work via the Google Business Profile, which is why it is essential to make sure yours is up to date.
  4. Organic Search Results: This aspect is the first impacted by SEO, and you can rank here with the right content.
  5. People Also Ask: This section has a list of similar questions, which you can use when developing your content ideas list.
  6. Featured Snippets: This section is relatively new, but it is a great SEO opportunity for law firms to rank on the first page of the SERP.

What Aspects Impact Google’s Ranking System?

In simple terms, Google’s ranking system focuses on four main factors. If you successfully tackle these aspects, your business will see an improvement in its Google ranking.

  • Backlinks
  • Content
  • User experience
  • Technical SEO.


When it comes to SEO, the first thing many think about is how important great content is. Sure, your content needs to be engaging, insightful, and educational, but even if it is, without high quality backlinks in place, how will Google differentiate it from any other post on the subject?

Without any reputable backlinks, Google may assume that your website is not a trustworthy or authoritative content source and will rank you with this in mind. However, with the right backlinks and excellent content, Google will quickly identify your law firm as a reputable source of information and rank you much higher in the SERP.

A backlink is a term used for when another reputable website embeds a link in its content that takes readers across to your website. Google mark these backlinks as a digital “thumbs up” that you are a trusted source, and the more reputable backlinks you have, the better!

Backlinks are deemed reputable when found within a piece of content rather than in a footer or sidebar and the website in question has a domain rating of more than 70. If your website attracts only low-reputation backlinks, this can have an even more negative impact than no backlinks.


The term “content” covers several aspects, including video content, blog content, eBooks, and other web pages.

Content should provide essential, insightful, and engaging information for website visitors, and it is one of the critical aspects Google considers when ranking your website.

When a client seeks out a lawyer for the first time, chances are they are coming to you with a ton of questions about their predicament. If you can answer as many of those as possible in your content, your law firm will rank higher in organic search results.

Google values content that is authoritative and relevant and places that content at the top of its search rankings.

Answering questions, offering guidance and insight, and doing so with a page that is well structured, loads quickly, and is aesthetically pleasing, is sure to rank your law firm’s website well compared to rivals.

Google makes these assumptions using the RankBrain AI system, which searches for keywords through your website, examples of positive engagement and reviews, and well-structured content. They then compare this to other websites with content on this keyword and rank them accordingly.

It is important to note that you shouldn’t write content that only focuses on a primary keyword. Each potential client will search for law firms in their area in a different way, so it is important also to add secondary keywords to articles or write plenty of content that covers several similar topics. That way, if a client searches for a “divorce lawyer near me” or “do I need to hire a divorce lawyer?” you will rank well for both.

User Experience

The third factor that influences your Google ranking is user experience. As part of their SEO review of your website, Google will evaluate how easy it is to navigate around the website, how responsive your website is, how quickly pages load, and how aesthetically appealing it is.

Is Your Website Mobile Friendly?

Ensuring your website is mobile-friendly is a non-negotiable in the modern digital age. If you are unsure whether or not your website runs well on mobile, you can use Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test. This quick and easy test will help you understand whether or not you need to work on how mobile-friendly your website is.

Technical SEO

The final aspect that influences your Google ranking is technical SEO, which covers questions surrounding your website. The easier it is for Google to crawl your website, the quicker pages load, and the simpler the linking between pages is, the better you will score in this category.

Here are some rules to help improve your technical SEO score:

  • Concise header tags
  • Title tags with keywords
  • Alt text for images
  • Internal and external links to reputable sources
  • Clear and precise URL structure.

SEO Agency for Attorneys

Frequently Asked Questions About Law Firm SEO

Do lawyers need SEO?

For any law firm looking to gain more clients through search engines, their website’s search engine rankings are essential to ensure the law firm’s site appears at the top of the list for more organic traffic.

Does SEO work for law firms?

An effective law-firm SEO strategy is beneficial, no matter what type of law they practice. Working with an SEO agency is the best way to ensure top-quality results.

How do law firms benefit from SEO?

Law firms with powerful SEO strategies will experience more leads coming to their website for them to turn into clients.

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