With regards to search engine marketing, targeting the correct keywords is vitally important. One mistake that many businesses, including law firms, make is that they pick an arbitrary keyword or two that they think they should rank for and concentrate their efforts (or the efforts of people they hire) in ranking for that keyword. Don’t make that mistake.
On the other end of the spectrum, some businesses or firms want their web site top-ranked for every possible relevant keyword. Don’t do that, either.
So just what do you do? Let research guide your decisions, and pick keywords that meet three specific criteria.
For any potential keyword, judge its effectiveness based on the following three criteria:
1. Relevance. Relevance refers to how closely the keyword is related to the subject of a web site and the content on a particular page of the site. You want to target keywords with a high degree of relevance.
As an example, if a law firm in Miami has a page on its web site about maritime accidents, then a good keyword for that page might be “Miami maritime accident lawyer.”
2. Search volume. The more search traffic there is for a particular keyword, the more potential traffic the keyword could drive to your web site.
3. Competition. Keywords that have fewer competing web sites offer the opportunity to get your site ranked quicker.
So the three major criteria for any keyword you are considering targeting is relevance, traffic and competition. You will have to use some judgment for the relevance component, but you know your business better than anyone – you know when something is not relevant. Google’s external AdWords keyword tool, found at https://adwords.google.com/select/KeywordToolExternal, is one of the best sources of finding competitive data. The competition criterion can be based on a couple of things: either the number of results of a Google search for the keyword surrounded by quotes; or the number of results of an “allintitle:” search for the keyword in Google.
So to begin creating your target keyword list, start by using the AdWords external keyword tool referenced above, eliminating the ones that are not relevant, and then ranking them by search volume. Then highlight the ones that are not overly competitive (less than 1,000 competing sites is good). Your highlighted keywords at this point are your best bet for generating targeted organic search engine traffic in a reasonable amount of time. Your chance of ranking for those keywords, and thus generating visits to your web site, is excellent.