Your website isn’t ranking very well on Google. When people search for a lawyer in your area, they’re not seeing your name on the first page of the search results. In fact, you’re lucky if they see your name on the fourth page. You’re buried deep inside of Google.
You’re sad about it. You’d really like to be on the first page. You’ve got a bad case of search rank envy, and you’re thinking evil thoughts about the lawyers coming out on top.
What you need is a plan that will catapult you to the top of the rankings right now. You’re confident that showing up as the first listing will bring you more money than you’d ever need. You’re certain that ranking at the top is the key to fame and fortune, and you’re willing to do whatever is necessary to jump over the competition.
You’ve got time. You’ve got money. You’re motivated to solve this problem.
What should you do?
1. Slow down.
Highly motivated, emotional lawyers with a search engine problem are ripe for the picking by search engine optimization firms. These are the lawyers who spend thousands of dollars a month for what they hope will be a big revenue boost when they move up to the top of the Google results. When you get stressed, motivated, and agitated, it’s easy to waste a ton of money. Slow down and think before you whip out your platinum American Express card.
2. Don’t be so sure that the firms ranking at the top are raking in the cash.
I’ve been on top of the search engine rankings, and I’ve been in the middle. I’m on top right now, and the rankings help generate revenue. However, having the top ranking does not guarantee the big bucks. Yes, it’s good to be on top, but it’s not nearly as important as some lawyers seem to believe. It’s usually not worth spending what lots of lawyers pay search engine optimization firms for the promise of high rankings.
3. Don’t believe the hucksters.
People who promise you a magical, foolproof system for moving up in the rankings are full of crap. They’re lying to you, and you should run away from them. How is it that smart, analytical, critical thinkers like lawyers end up paying a fortune to search engine optimizers? It’s baffling, but I hear another story about it every week.
4. Build a website that deserves high rankings.
If you want to move up in the rankings, figure out what your prospective clients need and build a site that helps them, educates them, and meets their needs. Listen to what your clients are saying when they come into your office. Pay special attention to anything that ends in a question mark. Answer their questions online and use the words they use. Build a site that others find useful, and you’ll gain the rankings you deserve.
5. Take your time.
This is truly a marathon, not a sprint. Don’t expect to solve this problem overnight. Building an asset for your community takes time, effort, and attention. Even if you build the best site available, it will take the universe some time to notice. The search engines are much like the spread of your reputation. Doing something great today may take a while to get talked about. Give your site time to mature and evolve and move up in the rankings.
The frustration of ranking poorly in the search engines is painful. It’s an issue to be addressed and fixed. However, it’s not a short-term project. This is an undertaking that requires ongoing effort and attention and a sincere desire to help your site visitors. Think long-term. Don’t let your frustration lead you to take action that is ultimately counterproductive.