Major Changes on the Horizon
A law office has to pay attention to a lot of things, and for most attorneys, Google’s algorithm changes are not at the top of their list. Good clients have a lot of needs, and other vital aspects of a law office’s daily operations usually take precedence. But with the latest news from Google, this might be one of those times to make an exception.
At the end of the year, Google will be releasing the Real Time Penguin Algorithm, which was created to filter spam out of research results. This will be the first real-time search algorithm ever and has the potential to shake things up like never before. Google’s algorithms are moving toward a continuous cycle of web crawling for best practices, good content, and the elimination of unethical tactics, but what does this mean for your law firm?
Avoid Getting Trampled
As the economy gradually recovers, the costs associated with digital marketing have already began to increase. The result is that most businesses that could not invest in their online presence are now flexing their budgets and investing more in digital marketing. Google’s mobile algorithm update also has spurred many businesses to update their websites to include a responsive mobile site, increasing the competition even more.
A real-time algorithm will be a reopening of the field of search. The changes that you make to your offices website will raise you up or push you down in the search engine ranks in minutes or hours rather than weeks or months. Therefore, it’s so important that your firm and your marketing agency monitor your search results diligently moving forward, especially in the first few months of the Penguin rollout.
Update Your Digital Marketing Mentality
First impressions are lasting. Your website (or lack thereof) is your first interaction with the majority of your clients. We are finding that many legal websites are providing content for content’s sake, but this is the wrong approach. Google wants to provide the right answer to a search query at the right time. Every algorithm update that they have conceived has been to improve the search experience quality for the end user. Accordingly, you should think of your website along the same lines. The name of the game here is higher quality, even if that means a dip in quantity.
Avoid the Silver Bullet
Your efforts to “game” your online presence will inevitably fail over the long term, and with the new algorithm rollout, it is likely that your short term successes with silver bullet solutions will also be short lived. Keep in mind that this real time update will likely be applied to the Humming Bird and the Panda Algorithm, as well. The ups and downs can be avoided if your team follows best practices and provides educational, engaging content.
Now Is the Time to Act
There is a lot at stake for any practice that is looking to create an online presence in 2016, which means that your office needs to start making adjustments immediately. Don’t wait: when Google says something is going to happen, it’s going to happen. This is your one and only warning, and solo firms should be especially vigilant. A law office pulling in around $300,000 in annual sales with a substandard online presence will be the hardest hit when Google begins updating search engine results in real time, due to the fact that they have the least amount of resources to deal with this situation.
If you have been on the fence about contacting a marketing agency to assess your needs and deliver quality deliverables, now might be the time to reach out. Call 888-222-1512 today to learn more about how your law firm can reap the benefits of partnering with LaFleur.
Schwartz, B. (2015, Sept. 4). What happened to the Google Panda 4.2 update? Did it make a u-turn? SearchEngineLand. http://searchengineland.com/what-happened-to-the-google-panda-4-2-update-did-it-make-a-u-turn-229878
Schwartz, B. (2015, Oct. 1). Google confirms the Real Time Penguin Algorithm is coming soon. SearchEngineLand. Retrieved from http://searchengineland.com/google-confirms-the-real-time-penguin-algorithm-is-coming-soon-232093
Schwartz, B. (2015, Oct. 1). Google Panda 4.2 is still rolling out. SearchEngineLand. Retrieved from http://searchengineland.com/google-panda-4-2-is-still-rolling-out-232095