Joining Google Maps makes sense for a new local eatery, but if you are a lawyer trying to gain more traction, can you get the same positive results by joining Google Maps? We reached out to some Google Maps specialists so they could weigh in on the conversation. Keep reading to see whether or not they think it can help generate new leads.
Google My Business is Vital
At our firm, local SEO and Google Maps are significant priorities for our law firm’s marketing team. Thankfully, our law firm ranks first on Google Maps for many relevant searches in our city. This result is because we have been able to single out the most important tasks for getting a high search engine results position. This ranking position has consistently generated leads for our law firm. Google My Business optimization, quality backlinks, positive Google reviews, and on-page keywords are the most critical factors for attracting leads through Google Maps.
Google My Business is vital to rank on Google Maps searches and Google searches in general. Law firms listing their address, phone number, and other contact information are essential to ranking in local searches. Another significant part of improving search results position is having positive reviews for each business location. Google’s algorithm takes each review into account and will penalize any review it deems unauthentic.
Adding reviews consistently is more effective than adding a large number of reviews in a few days. It is best to ask each client to leave a positive review and incentivize it if necessary. These reviews will also boost your credibility when potential clients search for a law firm to handle their cases. Google Maps is a part of SEO, meaning a law firm’s website having quality backlinks will help boost the website’s search engine results position on both Google searches and Google Maps searches.
The higher a website ranks on relevant searches, the more likely it will generate leads. Similarly, having relevant keywords on the law firm’s website will help it rank higher on Google Maps and Google searches. Relevant long-tail keywords are easier to rank higher due to less competition. This advice is how our law firm has become the top-ranked law firm on Google Maps in our city, generating leads for our law firm.
Completed and Accurate Profile
To get listed on Google Maps, a law firm or any other business should create a profile on Google My Business. Or claim one, if it exists. The thing is that Google My Business unites the information on both Google Search and Google Maps, so everything you add on GMB appears on both mentioned resources (given that the My Business profile is verified).
The only key to the successful performance of the GMB profile is the completed profile: title, description, contact details, news and updates, photos and videos, listed services, and their descriptions, in other words, every field in the GMB console should be opened and filled in.
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Surely, the profile has to be verified. Our experience shows that unverified profiles are not shown in search results and on Maps. This will ensure traffic to the created GMB profile as well as the company’s website, which might be converted into leads.
However, it’s not only about Google My Business. To boost online presence, a law firm, or any other business, should create profiles on several other major aggregators like Apple Maps Connect, Microsoft Bing Places, Yahoo Small Business, and Yelp Business Listing.
Utilize All the Features of Google Maps
Google Maps provides a lot of information that can be used for lead generation. This includes addresses, phone numbers, website information, and other contact information like direct messaging. It can also provide the distance from the law firm to the client’s address, which could be beneficial in determining how to organize your day or which clients to get in touch with first.
Additionally, Google Maps offers driving, public transit, and walking directions. This can be used to show the client how easy it would be to get to your law firm from their home or place of work. You can use the business listing feature on Google Maps to create a free listing for your law firm. This will allow potential clients to find your law firm when they search for legal services in their area.
Google Maps is an incredibly powerful tool for lead generation. By using all of its features, you can provide potential clients with all the information they need to choose your law firm. Using Google Maps can help build trust between your law firm and the potential client, because Google Maps is a widely trusted source of information and should be optimized fully to gain the most benefits.
Upload Geotagged Photos and Earning High-Quality Links
For Local Maps, I focus my energy on filling out the profile in full, uploading geotagged photos, earning high-quality links to the target website, publishing geographical content on the target website, and reviews.
Google scans websites constantly, and it knows what geographically-related content you’ve included. If you want to rank for “Los Angeles personal injury lawyer”, you’ll need to have a content page on that topic. For most, this occurs naturally, but what happens for terms like “Los Angeles slip and fall attorney”? Some firms might include that page, but is it specific to the geographic region you are targeting? Make sure to get a content page up on your website targeting every term you want to rank on Local Maps for.
Geotagged photos are photos that have location data embedded into them. They aren’t going to make or break your local campaign, but if you are trying to get from position two to position one, you may have success. Don’t forget this important step.
Why do attorneys spend all that money on billboards? For one, they directly result in leads, but they also get a lot of people to search for your brand online and give you name recognition. Sometimes, they result in backlinks from other websites. These backlinks are very important for local map rankings. Find a way to generate high-quality, legal-related links to your website in creative ways as it is essential to rank in the local maps area.
Finally, you must have reviews. Reviews are one of the biggest local map ranking factors that there are. Reach out to your past clients and start asking clients for reviews at the conclusion of their cases. You’ll start seeing positive effects from this rather quickly.
Optimize Your Google Maps Listing
Much like a website, Google Maps listings can be optimized through link building. Fortunately, local link building is considerably easier than building links to your blog content. For local link building, many services will help you get your business listed on an array of local listing sites.
Optimizing your Google Maps listing through link building could boost your listing to the top, which can help you generate leads by catching your potential client’s attention before the competition. In general, Google Map listing optimization is overlooked by companies, so it can often be a less-competitive method to get to the top.
Additionally, Google Map listings are higher in the search results than the website search results, so if online lead generation is your goal, you won’t want to miss out on optimizing your map listing.
Keep Your Account Updated
The very first step to appearing on Google Maps is to create a Google business listing. The service is free and easy to set up. You can start by typing Google My Business Account Setup. All you need to do is simply follow the steps. Google would send you a postcard with a unique code to verify your address. Type in the code to your online account and you are all set.
Now, what happens after is the opportunity part. Many people set up their Google listing and hope that it will take off from there. This is not the case. You have to treat your Google listing as a new Social Media account. There are opportunities to publish news (in the forms of photos, videos, or articles) and also to update your profile.
I would advise anyone to pay close attention to their Google Business account. Make sure you showcase your team, the office, and of course the services you provide. Keep your contact information and working hours always up to date. If you manage your Google Business, you will appear on Google Maps. Clients will be able to find you, look up your office, and get a feel of the services you provide.
The final and most important step: reviews. Make sure you send your Google review link to every client you interact with. Set up a review program. There are many creative ways to encourage clients to leave a rating or review on your Google Business account. Make sure you get your staff involved as well, as they are the front of your business and often handle your clients’ needs.
In conclusion, creating a Google Business and a Google Map listing is just the first step. Make sure you update your account. Post regular photos from the inside and outside of your business and send review links to clients.
Become a Subconscious Thought
Law firms are able to harness Google Maps in order to drive awareness to their brands just like any other business.
Firms should all have location data provided in their website’s copy, usually on the contact page.
Collecting all of their location data, ensuring that everything is correct, and then posting it to local listings services will improve Google Maps ranking results, which in turn will help the law firm rank on a wider variety of Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs).
This will come in handy, especially for users who perhaps are looking for a lawyer on their mobile device while waiting for their car to be towed away after an accident.
Law firms should also ask for reviews on Google Places to add credibility to their Google Maps results, as having more positive reviews will also increase the likelihood of a user to click through to their site.
When doing this, it is imperative that all websites, local listings, social media profiles, and any other bit of published information regarding office locations match each other, as conflicting signals can impede performance, and also confuse users.
Another benefit that is not often thought of regarding Google Maps results, is that they can function similarly to display ads for building awareness. Say that you are looking for a restaurant in your area, you go to Google Maps to find it one day, and you see the law firm listing.
Then maybe months down the line you’ve looked for a handful of other businesses within the vicinity and have seen the law firm listed multiple times.
By the time that you or someone you know needs a law firm, you’ll have already subconsciously thought, “That’s the law firm by the restaurant we just went to and the grocery store we love.” That would not be the case had you not used Google Maps listings.
It is also beneficial to your local SEO efforts, which in the instance of a law firm, tend to be highly important for gaining new clients.
Generate Leads Through Regular Updates
Google Maps can generate massive mileage for law firms through reviews and local content. While acquiring reviews will help the firm rank higher for local searches, content publishing through short posts and media will help target legal queries. Staying consistent with content publishing will be most important.
Two updates every week will greatly help improve visibility for local searches, and it will generate business leads as well. The best thing is that content publishing on Google Maps requires minimal effort. For reviews, reaching out to happy clients and even friends to help.
Utilize Google Posts
Google My Business provides the option for small businesses to add timely images, text, and videos to their map listings by utilizing Google Posts. Posts are similar to other social media posts but are visible on Google Search and Google Maps. Post often. Use keywords and high-quality images. This technique will make your law firm stand out from the rest and result in additional clicks to your website. Make sure you have lead capture mechanisms set up for your website to convert these new potential clients!
Verify Your Address
SEO experts know that the three most important pieces of information linked to the Google Business Profile are the NAP, which stand for name, address, and phone number.
Each business address is unique. If you want search engines like Google or Bing to properly locate your law firm, you must input this information into the tool.
Make sure the address is 100% accurate. Google will verify it physically via mail. Once you complete this crucial step, your business will start to appear on Google Map and various other online locations.
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