When launching a search engine optimization campaign, many people seem to forget the importance of location. Consider this: you launch an expensive, time consuming SEO campaign to capture placement for the search term "personal injury lawyer." After several months, you manage to reach the first page of Google, and you start getting site visitors. One problem – your office is located in Austin, TX, but the people who find your site are coming from all over the country. Though your site gets plenty of traffic, people leave after discovering that you don't practice law in their area.
There are several problems with going after a general search term like "personal injury lawyer."
– First, as in our example above, people who find your site might not be in your area and won't actually give you any business.
– Second, general terms are often harder to capture, taking more time and resources out of your pocket.
In most cases, you would probably be better served by launching a website targeted to a specific location – such as a city or metropolitan area. The size of this target area depends on the resources you are willing to commit to SEO and the scope of your company; achieving web presence in a small community is much easier than achieving good placement over an entire state.
Why build multiple websites? Why not put all your resources into one website that covers all your products, services, and information?
For one thing, multiple websites can help improve your SEO campaign. For example, if you are a lawyer who handles both personal injury and criminal defense litigation, it may be in your best interests to build one site for personal injury and another for criminal defense. By doing so, you create sites that are highly specific to each practice area, boosting your relevance in the eyes of search engines.
For another, having multiple, dedicated websites also benefits the end user. People gravitate towards specialists and specialized sites. Returning to the legal example, a potential client may be more interested in an attorney who handles only one type of case, rather than an attorney who dabbles in everything.
Compare these websites for the Charles D. Hankey Law Office –
Although the designs are similar, the content and focus of each site is highly specific to a certain area of law. Whether a potential client is looking for personal injury representation or Social Security assistance, he will find a website filled with relevant, persuasive information.
Learn more by contacting The Search Engine Guys at (512) 394-7234.
SEO may not be right for every company, but it can be beneficial in almost every profession or market. Although the majority of our clients at The Search Engine Guys are practicing attorneys or law firms, we'd like to point out that online marketing is by no means limited to the legal profession.
The reality – search engine optimization is advertising, and every business needs advertising. However, instead of buying TV time or billboard space in order to make an impression on as many people as possible, SEO relies on a relatively passive method – which has its perks. For example, while billboard advertising relies on mass exposure, SEO has the advantage of catering to a receptive audience. Visibility through online search acts a natural filter – the people who get to a website are people who have already shown interest (by searching) in the services or products that website has to offer. Not a bad deal, when you think about it.
Breaking into an existing market is almost always difficult for newcomers, and the world of internet marketing is no exception.
When a new business sets up shop, it must deal with older, bigger, and often wealthier competitors; when a company or firm launches a new website, it must compete with older, better-established websites. The longer a website is up, the more time it has to accumulate content, construct link networks, and build value with various search engines. In order to “catch up,” the new site must expand, network, and build value at a very high rate – often not an easy proposition.
It’s even harder when a website’s market or targeted search terms are highly competitive; a website targeting a small rural community would be far easier to optimize than one targeting a large urban metroplex.
Though SEO results may take a while to show up in these highly competitive markets, achieving strong placement is far from impossible. Case in point: the new website of Los Angeles employment lawyer Perry Smith. As you can imagine, breaking into a search market like Los Angeles is pretty difficult; dozens of long-established, well-monied firms have already built up strong footholds at the top of major search engines – and there are only 10 spots available on the first page.
For a long time, Mr. Smith’s LA employment law website languished in the doldrums of online search, unable to match up to first-page competitors. It took months of expansion, pages of new content, a revamped site plan, and countless hours of link-building to bring it up to the first and second pages of Google – and the battle isn’t over yet.
What I’m trying to point out is this – breaking into a highly competitive search market on the internet is just like breaking into a highly competitive retail market in the “real world.” There’s no way to do it except by hard work, dedication, and technical know-how. But then again, at The Search Engine Guys, that’s our specialty.
Our CEO, Joe Devine, likes to say that search engine optimization is “math, not magic.” There’s a lot of truth in that statement. Sustainable white-hat SEO doesn’t rely on some mystical formula to achieve results; taking shortcuts just doesn’t work.
In other words, SEO is a work in progress. Not only do you have to fight your way to the top of Google, Yahoo, MSN, etc., but you have to constantly fight to keep your position. Slacking off for even a week could cost you placement, especially in highly competitive markets or for highly competitive terms.
Every site that we take on is a battle; we believe that the only way to the top is through hard work and mathematical analysis.
For example, we have been working with Rhode Island criminal defense lawyer James Powderly for quite a while now. Though his DUI site has already achieved very strong first page placement, his criminal law website is still moving up through the ranks. We have every reason to expect dominant placement in the near future, but we also realize that the process does take time.
How honest is your SEO company about the techniques they use and the results they achieve? Call The Search Engine Guys at (512) 394-7234 for more information.
One of our big selling points here at The Search Engine Guys, is our exclusive partnership agreement. (Not sure what this is? Go to http://www.tseg.com to read about it). We believe that SEO works best through a long-term relationship with a client, not through a haphazard cookie-cutter approach.
Take Alexander & Associates, for example. They are a rapidly-growing family law and criminal law firm in the Denton, TX area, serving clients in Denton, Dallas, and Tarrant Counties. We have been working with them on an exclusive basis for quite some time, and we like to think that their rapid growth is due, at least in part, to the excellent web presence we have helped them develop.
Apparently Alexander & Associates agree, because they have asked us to build their first, second, and now their third website. Their newest is a new family and criminal law website specifically targeting the Frisco, TX area. Though the site is relatively new and is a work in progress, we expect it to be very successful in the near future. So if you need a Frisco divorce lawyer or a Frisco criminal defense attorney, give Alexander & Associates a call.
On the other hand, if you’d like to get in on the same kind of exclusive partnership that The Search Engine Guys have with Alexander & Associates, give us a call at (512) 394-7234.
We recently launched a new website for Pete Leehey, a motorcycle accident lawyer in Iowa. He's not your typical personal injury attorney; we might describe him as a biker who just happens to be an award-winning lawyer as well.
But we're pretty proud of the way this site turned out; it really shows the impact that customized design and custom photography can have when properly executed. Definitely not a stock website in any sense of the word.
Check the site out www.iowamotorcycleaccidents.com.
Want a site like Pete's? Give The Search Engine Guys a call at (512) 394-7234.
When’s the last time you looked at your website and asked yourself: “What message am I trying to convey? What is the first impression I want to create? Who’s my target audience?”
Anyone in the marketing business understands the importance of a focused, target-specific, and clear message. When an advertising agency designs a marketing campaign for its clients, they spend hours coming up with the core message of the campaign, because they know that this message will form the basis for every commercial, every billboard, and every slogan.
Website design is no different. Every aspect of a good site – a site that translates into new business for you – must be designed with a specific goal in mind. In other words, for a site to be truly effective, both in terms of conversion efficiency and in terms of SEO-friendliness, it must be unique to your needs and your audience.
Uniqueness in marketing…seems painfully obvious, doesn’t it?
Yet this “painfully obvious” fact seems to be ignored by many websites, especially when it comes to written content. Stock content is probably one of the worst things you can put on a site; not only does it detract from SEO value, but it also creates a bad impression on site visitors.
Even “semi-stock” content needs to go. I understand the allure of this kind of canned content; when a search engine optimization firm handles dozens, hundreds, or even thousands of websites, it’s very tempting to re-use snippets of content, especially for repetitive sections (such as the “Call us if you need our services…etc. etc.). A subtler, but just as insidious problem is the tendency to fall into a “message rut” across pieces of content or even between sites. The theme of each site should be unique; one personal injury attorney may emphasize ‘justice,’ while another might emphasize ‘compassion’ – using the same type of content for both sites is inefficient and ineffective.
Want to learn more about targeted content development? Call The Search Engine Guys at (512) 394-7234.
It’s shocking, really, how many outdated, dysfunctional, and cheap-looking websites are floating around the internet these days. It’s even more shocking that many of these websites belong to some of the most respectable firms and professional companies in the country.
These firms, who probably spend thousands of dollars on beautiful print advertisements and impeccable office decor, are strangely reluctant to invest in search engine optimization (SEO), website design, or other forms of internet marketing.
We can only ask: “Why?”
Today, more and more people are turning to the internet to find goods and services of all kinds. Consumers, particularly those under the age of 50, are far more likely to use an online search engine than to use the yellowpages. Yet many companies would rather buy a full-page ad in the phone book than invest in a new website. We can only imagine how many potential clients and customers are slipping through their fingers.
Where are your advertising dollars going?
Want to learn more about online marketing? Call The Search Engine Guys at (512) 394-7234.