There was once a time where nobody used Google. Yeah, it existed. We used things like Lycos and AOL. But that all ended decades ago, right?
Seriously, Google is the Internet. This should not surprise you. If you wanted to look up orange monkeys right now, you'd probably go to Google. Nearly everybody has a Gmail account. Google's offerings dominate most of their respective markets because they are so damn good and simple.
Google is where your clients are. And it is where you need to be. Check out these five ways your firm can get the most out of Google:
1. Beef Up Your SEO.
Bottom line: If a person needs a lawyer, and he doesn't have a friend who is like, "Totes bro. I got a DUI last week. Here's my lawyer's card," he's going to go to Google and search. He might also check review sites like Yelp, or the best damn lawyer directory on the Web (we're biased), but by and large, nearly everything anyone does on the Internet goes through Google.
This is why your law firm website or blog needs to be search engine optimized to play nice with Google -- so your site shows up in a strong spot in the search results.
2. Google Your Business (Local Listings).
Google My Business allows you to edit your law firm's local listing. Do it now, because Google's search results show local listings above natural "organic" search results, and it'll make you easier to find when that client is lost and pulls out her smartphone.
3. Pay Per Click Advertising.
Of course, you can't rely on natural search SEO wizardry for everything -- you'll likely need to consider Pay Per Click (PPC) advertising as well.
You've seen the ads above and around Google's search results. And many third-party sites display Google's ads as well. Google sells PPC advertising that can get your firm promoted in those spots. But the system is far from easy and uncomplicated; that's where FindLaw's lawyer marketing experts can help (see below).
4. Google+ and Authorship.
Google Authorship used to be vital. If you signed up, and connected your site, your headshot and byline would show up in the Google results next to your website.
Now? After Google cut back on, and now basically eliminated, Google Authorship in the results, the feature is more of a behind-the-scenes thing. People using Google won't get that authorship badge, but Google itself will be able to tie all of your content together. And if you are an authority on one topic, other pages that are tied to your online identity might also get an SEO boost.
5. Google Apps (Email, Calendar, Contacts) -- Maybe.
This is controversial. Google's email, calendar, contacts, cloud storage, and online collaborative office suite are among the best in their categories, if not the best. But for those of us concerned about data mining, data privacy, and complete and utter confidentiality for client information, Google Apps for Work may be a non-starter. (Sure, the scanning of your files is done by robots, but it makes many people uneasy nonetheless.)
Besides, Microsoft says that it won't scan your data and its offerings are free. Google's aren't, assuming you want your services tied your law firm (@fakeDUIpractice.com) instead of using generic Gmail addresses.
From SEO to PPC to everything else Google, FindLaw's Lawyer Marketing folks can handle it without the headaches and complicated jargon. Contact your local FindLaw consultant today.