In last week’s blog post, we revealed a recent study we had conducted here at Myers Freelance. In the study, we looked at the top three criminal defense attorney websites for each of the largest 50 cities in the United States and asked, “Do they have a legal blog?”
72% of them did. 23% of them did not. The remaining 5% of the law firms had a legal blog, but were hosting it on another domain.
Here’s where we answer the follow up question: “So what?”
Legal Blogging Improves Your Rankings
In short, we found more evidence that legal blogging promotes your law firm’s website in targeted Google searches: Sites at the top of the rankings were far more likely to have a legal blog than those that do not.
According to the American Bar Association’s (ABA) 2016 Legal Technology Survey Report, a grand total of 26% of law firms in the U.S. have a legal blog, a percentage that has not changed in a few years. If blogs did not influence your rankings in the search engine results page (SERP), one would expect to find legal blogs on about a quarter of the sites at the top of the results.
Instead, we found legal blogs on 72% of the top-rankings law firm websites. That’s nearly triple the rate we wouldn’t expected if legal blogging didn’t help your search engine optimization (SEO) efforts and improve your rankings.
Of course, it would be remiss to ignore the fact that what our study found was a correlation between high rankings and legal blogging, not causation. Our study, though, focused on gathering circumstantial evidence, and found some very strong signs to support the conclusion that legal blogging helps your search engine rankings.
Why does this matter? Being near the top of the results drastically improves the odds that an interested client will click through to your site, one of the most challenging parts of finding new clientele.
Legal Blogs Likely Help Even More for Long Tail Keywords
Our study focused on a quintessential vanity keyword of the legal field, “[location] criminal defense attorney.” These keywords can easily be pushed without having a legal blog on your site: Practice area landing pages can drop the phrase organically and effortlessly to drive your rankings. Having a legal blog to aid these efforts can help, but is by no means necessary. It explains why limiting our results to only main domain pages, rather than subpages like individual legal blog posts or landing pages, barely impacted the results, at all.
Long tail keywords would likely be a different story. Results for a long tail search, like “is running away from police evidence against you?” are likely to be filled with legal blog posts answering that very question. For these searches, the percentage of top-ranking law firm websites that have legal blogs is likely to be significantly higher than 72%, making it even more important to have a quality legal blog on your site if you’re serious about marketing yourself online.