In short, a legal directory is a searchable database of law firms and lawyers. The directory serves as an online source to locate a law firm near a person’s location. For example, individuals may search by practice area, location and other characteristics. Claiming your presence in the online legal directories can help your law firm rank higher. Both in local and organic search results.
In fact, reputable legal directories have high PageRank or Page Authority scores. Hence, it makes it more likely that your law firm shows up in local searches in your practice area. By claiming profiles on these websites, you can establish yourself as an authority in your field. Ultimately, this will help your law firm gain more exposure.
How to increase SEO rankings and online presence
1. FIND RELEVANT LEGAL DIRECTORIES
To determine which legal directories you want to target and claim profiles on:
- Read guides that provide you with the information you need
- Do a Google search for more localized or industry-specific directories
- Take a look at the suggested lists below
2. CLAIM FREE LAWYER DIRECTORY LISTINGS
Claim all of your free profiles on the top lawyer directories, listed below. Furthermore, ensure that the information is correct and consistent. Moreover, claim profiles for your practice in your specific legal area. Finally, don’t forget to claim your free profiles on state bar websites and legal associations.
3. CHOOSE LEGAL DIRECTORIES WITH FEATURES THAT BENEFIT YOU
Some legal directories may charge for extra features. These features can help you create backlinks and increase SEO rankings. Hence, carefully analyze and compare each directory and its cost. Afterward, determine which directories have the features that benefit your law firm most.
Features that make a legal directory more desirable include:
- A trusted and reliable source of legal information
- High traffic and domain authority
- Features that attract potential leads such as free Q&As, legal articles and more
- Websites that are user friendly
- Ability to add content to your profile with backlinks to your website
4. INCLUDE ONLINE REVIEWS
Reviews are one of the most influential factors in choosing a law firm or an attorney. In fact, 89% of people use reviews as a tool to help them find a service. The statistics show that:
- Three-quarters of web users trust online reviews just as much as input from people they know.
- A law firm with 5 reviews is 270% more likely to be reached by a prospective client.
The best reviews give specific examples of how the law firm assisted the client. Hence, focus on exceptional customer services to obtain valuable customer reviews. Finally, respond to reviews to show you care.
5. BE CONSISTENT
Consistency is crucial to increase SEO ranking. Therefore, your firm’s NAP information must be identical on every profile. In addition, your law firm’s details and social medial URLs should all be identical too.
Hence, list the basic information on each of your legal directory profiles. For instance, your law firm’s name, address and telephone number. However, many of the top legal directories allow lawyers to add additional information to their profiles. For example:
- Law firm name
- Law firm description (i.e., number of attorneys, year established, etc.)
- Contact information (i.e., address and phone number, fax number, email address, etc.)
- The physical location
- List of attorneys
- Fields of practice
- Website URL
- Social medial URLs
- Reviews and client testimonials
- Awards and recognitions
- Photos and logos
- Other information and links
Finally, remember that all details must be accurate and consistent. When updating information, ensure to update all profiles and websites accordingly.
Top 10 Legal Directories
These top legal directors are well-known for locating local lawyers and law firms. Furthermore, they are also respected sources for legal information.
Top Personal Injury Directories
There is a great deal of competition among personal injury law firms. Listing your law firm on a personal injury directory can boost your online presence. Some of the top personal injury legal directories include:
- Find a Personal Injury Attorney
- National Academy of Personal Injury Lawyers
- Find a Car Accident Attorney
- Personal Injury Warriors
Most importantly, adjust this listing by listing your firm with the top legal directories.
Top Criminal Defense Directories
Individuals seeking top criminal defense law firms might turn to directories that only feature criminal lawyers, such as:
- National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
- Find a Criminal Defense Attorney
- The National Trial Lawyers Top 100 Criminal Defense Attorneys
In addition, make sure to appear in your local and state criminal bar association’s directory.
Top Family Law Directories
Family law includes all matters related to marriage and families. Some of the top family law directories include:
- North American Family Law
- American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers
- National Academy of Family Law Attorneys
However, always research the directory to determine its ranking and reputation. Listing your profile on a low ranking or poor reputation directory could hurt your online rankings.
HOW TO IDENTIFY GOOD DIRECTORY?
Legal directories impact your SEO strategy, marketing strategy, and brand recognition. Below are some things to keep in mind when identifying a bad legal directory versus a good legal directory.
For a start, good legal directories have high domain authority (DA). The higher the domain authority, the more likely the website ranks high on SERPs. Accordingly, the lower the domain authority, the less likely you will improve your online ranking and reputation. You can check the domain authority of a legal directory using a tool like Alexa, Ahrefs or Moz.
PAID VS. FREE LEGAL DIRECTORY LISTINGS
Directories with a good reputation and a high domain authority benefit you to claim your profiles. However, some top legal directories charge fees for claiming profiles. Your profile may include photos, ratings, reviews and legal content. In addition, you may be featured in a legal Q&A. Or your photo may appear at the top of local searches.
Furthermore, your law firm and attorneys may receive special recognition in the form of badges. As a result, they might appeal to individuals searching for a lawyer or law firm. Consider paying only if the legal directory offers more benefits that will result in an ROI.
KEYWORD RANKINGS AND TRAFFIC
A good legal directory has a high volume of keyword placements on the directory site. When a legal directory has plenty of legal keywords, it is more likely to receive increased traffic. Accordingly, poor legal directories have low keyword rankings and low traffic. You can check keyword rankings and traffic with tools like Keywords Everywhere, SEMrush and Moz.
Besides seeming trustworthy, top legal directories should be well maintained and updated regularly. Furthermore, you should recognize your competitors listed there. Most importantly, you should feel comfortable giving your credit card information to the directory.
Top legal directories can be an effective way for attorneys to grow their online practice. For example, they provide consumers with the right attorneys. Besides, they provide a backlink to the attorney’s website. This ultimately helps grow its website’s online presence. The backlink is considered one of the most valuable parts of each lawyer listing. In addition, it can help pass the authority of the lawyer directories website to your law firm’s website.
One strategy that can help improve your online presence is to obtain more backlinks from legal directories. Backlinks are referral links on a website that directs traffic to your website. When you have a backlink from a credible, reliable website, it validates your online reputation. When your law firm has backlinks from several high-rated legal directories, your law firm’s SEO credibility increases. Consequently, as your SEO credibility increases, your rank in searches also increases.
A strong local SEO strategy that includes backlinks from legal directories will drive more traffic. This will increase the number of visitors who come across your website. The search can be conducted through searches on Google, Yahoo or Bing. As a result, these clients will contact you about their legal needs. Therefore, focus your resources on creating content on these websites that result in backlinks to your firm’s website. In fact, try to obtain backlinks from all of the top 10 legal directories.
Backlink Resource Examples
Top legal directories that allow you to publish articles with backlinks can be the most valuable. The website needs to be a trusted legal directory. Moreover, it should be considered a top authority for information related to legal matters. For example, Nolo allows you to publish articles on your law firm’s profile. Ultimately, that increases your law firm’s authority online, which in turn increases search engine ranking.
FindLaw is another example of a valuable source for backlinks. The website’s Q&A forums, articles, and free legal guides allow you to create different kinds of content. Accordingly, that content will create valuable backlinks to your law firm’s website.
When obtaining backlinks from legal directories that can improve your online presence and reputation, make sure to:
- Choose legal directories that have excellent reputations and high traffic
- Are consistent across every website and each profile page
- Carefully consider the return on investment before paying a legal directory to add content to your profile
- Add as much relevant information as possible to free profiles
Authority is one way to judge a link. However, beyond authority, the next two measures to evaluate are relevancy and trust. Relevancy is related to how relevant the website is that links to your website’s article or page. Hence, when evaluating your law firm’s link structure, the best links would be legal-related links.
Top legal directories can be beneficial to your practice. Legal directories such as Avvo, Justia and FindLaw help law firms increase their online presence. For instance, they are searched by potential clients who need a lawyer. Also, they are used by law firms who need to refer a potential case to another law firm.
As a result, using legal directories will increase traffic to your website, which can lead to new business. Consequently, legal directories play a role critical role in your SEO strategy. Before you join any, make sure the analytics they are providing is measurable and meaningful.
Managing online profiles can be time-consuming. It can also be overwhelming for someone who is not familiar with online strategies. Seeking help from professionals can sometimes be the best option to maximize the use of legal directories.