Google and its competitors continue to leverage increasingly sophisticated artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms to deliver higher quality search results. This has important implications for law firms and other businesses that use search engine optimization (SEO) techniques to drive more traffic to their websites. In the wake of new AI-based search algorithms, it is time to abandon the following outdated SEO strategies.
Not too long ago, websites sprung up with auto-generated content that was programmatically created to manipulate search engine results. Although that practice has faded somewhat, many websites are still filled with low-quality content that is stitched together with keywords. Google is known for penalizing websites that follow this practice. Now more than ever, website rankings suffer when the focus is on keywords instead of the needs of the specific targeted audience. High quality content that is updated and relevant is the antidote to gratuitous keyword stuffing.
Duplicating content is the same as plagiarism. If you are maintaining multiple websites for different geographic locations, your rankings may suffer if you duplicate or re-purpose small amounts of content across different sites. Google’s new algorithms are sophisticated enough to narrow results down to your specific target audience; if you do not tailor each site to that specific audience, you will not reach them. Professional content writing includes understanding the particular needs of your target client audience and producing pages and blogs to meet those needs.
No law firm wants to receive a bad review. However, if that happens, the best thing to do is to reach out to the reviewer as soon as possible in a calm, professional manner and attempt to understand what happened. The worst thing to do is pay someone to post a fake review in attempt to counter the bad one. Fake reviews are illegal in some countries. The biggest penalty is getting exposed and losing the trust of your clients. Google’s algorithms are getting better at distinguishing whether a review is genuine.
Backlinks are links from external websites back to yours. The presence of authentic backlinks can do a lot to boost your website rankings. However, some SEO firms purchase expired domains for the sole purpose of linking from those domains to their clients’ websites. Google does not like cheating, and this practice is now under intense scrutiny. Examples of legitimate backlinks include those from professional associations to your site or from charities that your firm has sponsored. Relationships with these organizations must be cultivated but the effort is well worth the time.
Another bad practice to abandon is having disparities between the desktop and mobile versions of your website. The branding and visuals should be consistent across both platforms, and each should load quickly. Responsive design is the discipline that focuses on ensuring your website runs smoothly on various types of smart phones.
Staying up to date on the latest advances in SEO technology can be time-consuming. Failing to do so, however, can mean less traffic to your website and lost opportunities. The Cherry Hill SEO specialists at Premier Legal Marketing have the resources and expertise needed to do the work for you. In addition to SEO, our experienced team can support your digital marketing needs in the areas of social media, public relations, email marketing, website design, video production, and media outreach. For a free consultation and website assessment, call 856-320-2016 or contact us online.