It has been a while since Google released its search algorithm update factoring in the reactivity of websites and their mobile friendliness. Since the update, many law firms have noticed a change in their page rank, and it is creating a bit of a stir.
Why did Google Make This Change?
Making the change was not because Google wanted to “punish” firms that did not have an optimized mobile presence online. Instead, Google has anticipated an ongoing shift in search behavior. Smartphone ownership in the United States has doubled in just 4 years, and more and more people favor searching for services online using their smart devices than traditional computers. In fact, searches on mobile devices account for over 29% of all searches online, and that percentage is growing, while the number of searches performed on traditional computers is declining. If your law firm is just learning about this change, you’re at least a year behind the curve and, in reality, probably about 3 years behind this trend.
Now that the so-called “Mobilegeddon” has passed, the current buzz is about the “moments” consumers have and how those moments translate into search activity on smartphones and tablets. Mobile devices have changed the way that we live and have forever changed the expectations that prospective clients will have about their online experience. If your firm is not available and optimized for inclusion in these users’ mobile moments, then your fickle prospective clients will move on. Below are just some of the important mobile-friendly “moments” that can be monopolized on to seize potential clients’ attention.
- Solving a Problem – Right Away Problems in life happen. The legal profession thrives off solving those problems. In fact, the sole purpose of an attorney’s practice is to solve the legal problems of their client. According to Google, 62% of smartphone users are more likely to take action right away toward solving an unexpected problem or a new task because they have a smartphone. This is why it is imperative for your law office to get in front of those smartphone users.These are loved ones searching for “what to do” when their friend or family member is hospitalized due to an accident. They are high-energy executives searching for solutions when obstacles are in their path. Imagine a business owner on vacation who finds out that the company’s business lawyer just skipped out to Mexico with 200,000 dollars. Trust me, once that business owner towels off, the first thing he or she will be doing is getting on a smartphone – to find another business lawyer.
- Long-term Goal Moments
Probate lawyers have an obligation to their clients of helping them with long-term planning. Wills, trusts, and estate planning are all part of the long-term planning that individuals do at various stages in their lives. According to Google, 90% of smartphone users have used their phone to make progress toward a long-term or multi-step process while “out and about.” Your potential clients are on the go, researching as they move through (or get held up during) their daily routine. They research real estate, asset planning, powers of attorney, and many other long-term topics in little sprints. They are doing it after kids’ bedtimes and while jogging on the treadmill. In fact, before they have called your office or filled out a web form, the vast majority of them are already prepared to choose a service provider.
- Big Change Moments
According to the American Psychological Association, 90% of people in Western cultures get married, and between 40-50% of those marriages end in divorce. Each one of those relationships ends in a different way depending on how that relationship developed. Many people search for advice about important life decisions – like ending a marriage – with their smart devices. People search for marriage-saving tips, for what to expect in a divorce, and for what preparations to make. Others will search for councilors or mediators to make the end civil. There will, of course, also be those who search for “the best divorce attorney in the state” or “the divorce attorney that will crush his/her spirit and take everything.” During life-changing moments, it is imperative that your law firm stays in front of a prospective client, providing tips, education, and support through mobile-optimized content marketing.
The explosion of mobile technology and its unprecedented adoption by the public have changed the way we consume information. To win this fight – or even just participate in it – your law firm needs to build and foster relationships with potential clients by creating a strong, mobile-friendly website; by creating engaging, mobile-friendly content; and by nurturing prospective clients with bite-sized chunks of content to be consumed at every step of their journey to hiring you. The more your law firm adapts to this ongoing, rapid change in consumer behavior, the more times your phone will ring. After all, every one of those smart devices has the ability to call your office with the simple push of a button. This means your phone number needs to be readily available on your mobile site and all of the mobile ads that your team creates as well, but that’s a topic for another day.
To get an assessment of your site’s mobile friendliness or to discuss the ways that LaFleur can help you efficiently manage your digital marketing efforts and maximize your exposure to potential clients, call 888-222-1512 or contact us in a way that is most convenient to you. We look forward to hearing from you!
American Physiological Association. (2015). Marriage & divorce. American Psychological Association. Retrieved from http://www.apa.org/topics/divorce/
Google. (2015). Micro-Moments. Think with Google. Retrieved from https://www.thinkwithgoogle.com/micromoments