Direct Access provides legal professionals with excellent opportunities to independently grow their client base without having to rely on referrals. One approach that is becoming increasingly popular is the harnessing of expert barrister SEO.
Correctly utilised, this method will improve your practice’s online visibility, build the trust of potential clients, increase traffic to your website and, as a result, help you to win more instructions.
As more and more individuals and sets of Chambers are expanding their client pools through digital marketing for barristers, making the most of these opportunities yourself will allow you to compete for more leads on an even playing field.
The following guide will answer the question of how to use SEO as a barrister successfully and will also help you to decide on your own approach.
How Can SEO Aid You As a Barrister?
With competition rife in the legal sector, having a basic website just isn’t enough anymore. Competitors who harness top keywords, optimise their appearance on Google, build external links to their site and perform regular performance audits will far outstrip those who remain inactive. An online profile simply detailing your services and contact details with no updated or optimised content will quickly fall behind.
SEO for barristers involves expert techniques that will promote your practice, send your name to the top of the search results and increase public trust in your brand. You’ll increase your visibility to both potential clients and expand your professional network which, in turn will direct more traffic to your website. It’s then up to you to ensure your content is of a standard that will see those visitors decide to become paying clients.
One of the major benefits of barrister SEO is that it costs very little. In fact, depending on your approach, you could achieve considerable results for absolutely free.
How to Use SEO as a Barrister
SEO for barristers can be broken down into the following areas:
- Keyword-optimised content
- Link building and outreach
- Local search
Once you have collected the highest performing terms (remember, these will change extremely regularly), you should then distribute them throughout your content. This should be done “organically”, meaning that all usage should feel natural and fit into a sentence in a way that is logical and grammatically correct.
The best places to use keywords are in the main copy of your site’s landing pages and in blog posts, though you should also try to optimise social media bios and other text related to your brand.
Once your copy features a good number of keywords, it will be far easier to find using a search engine and will appear further up the results. Remember to keep them all relevant, as you only want visitors who are likely to use your services.
Link building and outreach
Those who harness expert SEO for barristers know that it’s vital to build a good selection of professional contacts. Journalists are among the most valuable of connections you can have, as they may call upon you to provide an expert perspective on breaking news stories.
Not only will this help to grow your reputation and build trust, but you can also request that those quoting you share links to your website and other online information. This is known as “link building” – ensuring that there are as many associations between relevant websites as possible, Google will reward your website with higher keyword rankings.
Another approach to this technique is to create free content for your relevant contacts. Writing a “guest post” for their blog will see your name broadcast further, and readers will see that you are considered a trusted and knowledgeable contributor. You can also request to link back to your site from the content you have written.
This technique is a favoured approach of professionals whose clients live within a particular catchment area – so it’s a vital part of SEO for barristers. However, its effects can reach much further. It’s a great idea to put these particular instructions into action if you’re not sure of how to appear on Google as a barrister as effectively as possible.
Google My Business is free to use. Not only does it allow you to ensure that you appear in the right place on Google Maps, but you can also use it to update your contact details (which should always be displayed), add images of your business, display testimonials, add and edit descriptions and much more besides.
Of course, prospective clients living locally will benefit from this level of information, but this information will be visible whenever a user types your details into a search engine.
Analyse Your Results and Optimise
After you have implemented the above steps, you should decide when to review your performance and check how effective your actions have been. This is called an audit. Google Analytics is a great free tool you can use to measure your Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) – after which, you can analyse which areas of your online presence are working well, and which require a little more work.
With each audit, you should create new goals for yourself. After a set period of time, measure your KPIs and analyse your performance again. Each time, you should see clear improvement.
Those who fully understand how to use SEO as a barrister will reap the benefits, as more relevant traffic will be directed to your site as a result of your efforts. From there, it’s up to you to convert them into leads.
To conclude, the top approaches to SEO for barristers should include:
- High quality content and diligent keyword optimisation
- Links created in external content leading back to your site
- A keen eye for detail when it comes to the standard of your Google listing
- Regular analysis, auditing and the implementation of new approaches