It is crucial to take time when developing a law firm practice area page strategy. At Blue Seven Content, regularly liken practice area pages for law firms as “product descriptions.” These pages let your prospective clients know what you do and whether or not you can help them with their problems or pain points.
We want to be very clear – practice area pages are not for other lawyers. These pages are for the everyday person in your geographic area. They have to be written in a way that clearly and concisely explains the topic and how you can help.
When you are developing a strategy for your law firm practice area pages, it can be overwhelming. Newer law firms need to get their website going quickly. The practice area page strategy for a new law firm is going to look different than the ongoing practice area page development for an established firm. Here, we want to briefly describe the process of developing law firm service area pages over time as your firm continues to grow and understand your prospective clients.
Why You Need More Practice Area Pages for Your Law Firm
When a law firm first starts out, there is not going to be an extensive layout of the website. You need something online quickly to be ready for your opening, so you may have a home page, basic practice area pages, an “about us” page, a blog area, and a “contact us” page.
When it comes to practice area pages for a new website, these pages may not be very expensive to begin with. It could be the case that you have a 500-to-550-word page for every major practice area that your law firm covers. For example, if you have a family law firm, your practice area pages may consist of a:
- Family law overview page
- Divorce page
- Child custody page
- Property division page
- Alimony page
- Child support page
- Protective orders page
For a personal injury page, you’ll likely want to cover the basics right off the bat with a:
- Personal injury overview page
- Car accident page
- Truck accident page
- Slip and fall accident page
- Premises liability page
- Product liability page
However, a law firm website is not a one-and-done proposition. Your website has to grow organically. Google and other search engine algorithms are looking for continual, evergreen content. You can accomplish this by providing blogs for the website, updating existing practice area pages, and adding new practice area pages.
Over time, you’re going to want to do a few things when it comes to your law firm’s practice area pages:
- You can turn your main practice area pages into longer-form pages.
- You can add new legal practice area pages altogether.
Getting Granular on Your Practice Areas
Your basic practice area pages may be enough to get your law firm up and running and to get a few clients in the door, but this is not going to be enough in the long run. Pretty quickly, you need to start thinking about adding more content to your website. Your law firm practice area page strategy will be crucial here.
If you are an established law firm, you cannot let your law firm practice area pages become stagnant. If you can’t remember the last time you added any service area pages or when you updated your existing practice area pages, it is time to start thinking about some changes.
One way to add new law firm service page content is to get more granular on the topics that your firm focuses on. On the personal injury list above, we mentioned a basic car accident page for the firm. However, the “car accident” page can become your umbrella page to cover all types of vehicle accidents and vehicle accident topics.
We want you to think about the topics that you can add under car accidents:
- Pedestrian accident page
- Bicycle accident page
- Motorcycle accident page
- DUI accident page
- Head-on collision page
- Rear-end collision page
- T-bone accident page
- Rollover collision page
- Construction accident page
- …and more
This works for all types of law firms – family law, personal injury, criminal defense, estate law, IP and patent law firms, and more. For example, suppose you are a criminal defense attorney in San Francisco and have a “San Francisco DUI Defense Attorney” practice area page. You can use that as your umbrella page to cover various types of searches that people in your area may look up if they are facing a DUI charge:
- DUI penalties
- Driver’s license issues
- Defenses to DUIs
- Ignition interlock explanation
- The DUI charge timeframe
As you add more and more topics related to your particular practice areas, you are building authority for your law firm’s website. So long as your law firm service area pages are well written and contain good information optimized for SEO, you are building a database that the search engines will reward.
General Pages for Other Geographic Areas Around You
When most people start a law firm, they begin in one particular geographic area. Usually, this focuses around a city or perhaps a county. As such, your website content needs to reflect that geographic area. For SEO purposes, it is crucial for you to include geographic terms to your practice area information on your website.
For example, you are not going to perform very well in local searches if your entire practice area page for personal injury just says, “personal injury attorney.” Instead, you need to have your geographic area attached to some of these practice areas. If you are a Myrtle Beach law firm, you want the page to say “Myrtle Beach car accident attorney” in the correct areas of the page and in the headings (variations of this geo keyword phrase also need to be throughout the text).
But, let’s be honest – a Myrtle Beach car accident lawyer is going to want to target clients outside of just the city limits of Myrtle Beach. Over time, it would be wise to create practice area pages for other geographic areas. These new pages will, of course, have similar information, but they cannot be duplicated.
For example, Myrtle Beach is located in Horry County. It would be wise for a personal injury law firm to create the same types of practice area pages that they have for Myrtle Beach for other areas. These will be separate pages, but they will also be original and new. Search engine algorithms will heavily penalize your law firm’s website if you simply copy and paste and swap out the geographic keyword phrases. You would be surprised at how many law firms do just that.
A Myrtle Beach law firm may have multiple geographic areas that they want to target:
- North Myrtle Beach
- Surfside Beach
- Murrells Inlet
- Garden City
- Horry County
- Georgetown County
- Brunswick County
- …and more
When you begin thinking about your particular geographic area, you need to think about your county and the surrounding counties. You also have to consider all of the cities around your location. Additionally, you need to consider the unincorporated areas that everybody knows about and has a name for that may not be an actual municipality. Many individuals in those areas are likely to type in the unincorporated name in a search engine to look for legal help. In that list above of geographic areas around Myrtle Beach, a few of those places are actually unincorporated areas that everybody knows and that have large enough populations where having separate pages for them could be a good idea.
Turn Your Original Pages Into Long-Form Practice Area Pages
We mentioned turning your original practice area pages into longer-form practice area pages. After you write your original pages, that does not mean that you will never return to them. On the contrary, there are various reasons why you should continuously return to your practice area pages to make changes.
First, if you have any data or statistics on your practice area pages, you are going to want to look at updating the data or stats every year or so. Your readers will be turned off if they come onto your page and see car accident stats from 2016. That just indicates that you are not paying attention.
More and more, we have discovered that Google’s algorithm is rewarding longer-form pages. These longer posts are likely to be seen as more authoritative, but that does not mean that you can just throw in more words. Your existing pages have to be examined, and you have to add content that flows with what is already there. In some cases, you may decide to scrap your original page altogether and rewrite a 1,500- or 2,000-word page (using the same URL). A 2,000-word vehicle accident page for your geographic area that is original, researched, and optimized is going to get more traction than a 500-to-550-word practice area page. You can use these longer pages as the backbone of your law firm’s website.
Blue Seven Content Can Help With Your Law Firm Practice Area Page Strategy
There are many ways that you can go about developing practice area pages for your law firm’s website. You could hire a huge legal marketing company to handle your entire website, but there are pitfalls to that approach. At Blue Seven Content, we are not going to try to handle every need for your website. Our goal is to provide well-written, researched, and optimized content for your pages.
Together, we can approach your law firm practice area page strategy in one of two ways:
- We can write all of your law firm practice area pages for you. Blue Seven works with some of the best legal content writers in the industry, and we know how to put together a practice area page that will stand out above the rest for your firm and your geographic area.
- We can help you write your law firm practice area pages yourself. Blue Seven has developed a practice area page writing guide that you can purchase for $149. For an additional $99, you get a one-hour phone consultation for a lead content writer to go over the guide and our writing process.
When you need the best law firm content for your web pages, you can contact us for a free consultation by clicking here or calling us at 843-580-3158. We are ready to help you with every aspect of developing a content strategy for your website, from practice area pages to law firm blogs, to law firm FAQ pages to law firm landing pages. We’re standing by.
Written by Allen Watson – CEO and Co-Founder of Blue Seven Content