When I use the terms “Panda” and “Penguin,” try to block out all of the cute and cuddly images that come to mind. We aren’t talkin’ the adorable, cutesy kind here. We’re talkin’ the Google kind. The tough kind. Although, I suppose you could say that both kinds can be a little fuzzy. Let me break it down: “Panda” and “Penguin” are recent algorithm updates created by Google to target websites that may be over doing it on their SEO.
This is bad news for attorney SEO, right? Not quite.
In the past, attorneys’ websites have benefitted from paid links, multiple anchor texts (linking to your site excessively and without cause) and poor quality content. Before these updates, the websites that “over-optimized” in those ways would be more likely to come up first via an organic search. I know what you’re thinking: But I thought SEO was a good thing? It is—it’s just not as “black and white” as you might have thought (see what I did there?). This could very well be good news for some. See, Google is not the bad guy here—they are simply trying to eliminate those websites with content that viewers have no use for and give their top ranking spots to those deserving and trustworthy websites that are useful and pertinent to those who are searching for them.
Still, you may have to throw your old attorney SEO strategy out the window. “Bear” with me as I take you through these simple strategies:
Focus on quality over quantity.
It is not at all realistic to tell people not to optimize, as it is not yet clear the exact implications of those wild algorithms. Just make sure that you aren’t optimizing merely for the sake of optimizing— make your content count by making it both valuable and relevant. If you provide links, make sure they will be useful to the reader. Make sure that there is a variety of content. These updates are constantly working to weed out those boring, repetitive sites that continually scored those high rankings in the past (tricky, right?
Visitor interactions are crucial.
Google can now rank your site according to how valuable the content is to its users. If your content and other on-site elements grab your viewers’ interest, they will be more inclined to stick around for a while and click on a couple of those CTA’s. Of course, using analytics will certainly help you out when differentiating between which parts of your site are grabbing viewers’ attention and which parts they may be glossing over.
Make sure that your business information is the same everywhere on the web. Don’t have more than one website and, even if you don’t plan on using them (although you most definitely should), go ahead and claim your name on those Twitter and Facebook profiles. Having incorrect information on multiple websites could make it difficult for searches to distinguish your business from, say, one with a similar name in Last Chance, Idaho. Not helpful, for one, and two, it creates mistrust (and yes, Last Chance is a real place). Listing the exact same information on every page out there helps make your business easier to find in organic searches.
Still worried about your attorney SEO?
Does your website already consist of high-quality content that involves and engages your visitors? How about superior and applicable links? Is your information up to date? Is your social presence established? If so, you should be fine. Still worried? Don’t be! Partner with an inbound marketing agency to help you implement these new changes and make your website the best it can be. Visitors will be flocking in soon enough. That said, I hope my puns didn’t ruffle any feathers, I’m sure they were just unbearable!