What Types of Keywords Exist for Injury Law?
Digital marketing for personal injury lawyers is full of different techniques, our personal favorite is search engine optimization (SEO) of course. And you may be asking yourself, “What do I need to do to improve my website’s ranking on search engines?” And the answer is keyword research!
But what are the right keywords to target? Personal injury law firms should consider targeting keywords that potential clients would likely use when searching for legal representation.
For example, words like “injury law firm” ” car accident attorney,” and ” slip and fall lawyer.” By using these and other relevant keywords on your firm’s website, you can improve your site’s ranking and attract more personal injury leads.
But those terms are obvious, and everyone and their dog is targeting those terms. So how do you compete against those with millions in marketing budgets as a smaller injury firm? By expanding your keywords beyond the standard “accident lawyer near me” terms.
Using keyword research tools like Google Keyword Planner, SEMRush, or even Google Search itself, you’ll be able to find a large selection of keywords that’ll be perfect for your firm. You’ll also get a lot of insights from Google Search Console and Google Analytics if you have these on your website (you should!)
We’ll break down the different types of keywords in personal injury lawyer SEO, how you can find them, and how you can capitalize on these terms to steal a large chunk of the target market away from those big-time law firms who only focus on the main, generic keywords!
1. Long-Tail Keywords and Questions
Long-tail keywords are keyword phrases that are relatively specific and usually consist of three or more words. For example, a long-tail keyword for a personal injury lawyer might be “personal injury lawyer on contingency” or “how do I file a personal injury lawsuit?”
Long-tail keywords tend to be less competitive than shorter, more general keywords, and they can be a great way to get your website to rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs).
A great focus when researching long-tail keywords is customer questions. You’ve likely heard the same questions asked by potential clients over and over. Why not write a FAQ section or blog post on each? If they’re asking face to face, you can bet they’ll be asking online as well.
Long-tail keywords are extremely important in SEO strategies for smaller law firms. With proper keyword research, you can find terms without much competition, but plenty of search volume. This also gives you a better chance at staying high up in the rankings.
Think about it, what happens when a firm focuses entirely on “accident lawyer”, because that’s where they rank highest, suddenly loses their position for that term? They lose everything. But if you have 100 different long-tail terms you rank for, the likelihood of losing ALL of your rankings is significantly lower.
2. Local Personal Injury Keywords
Local keywords are search queries that include a location, such as a city, state, or country. For example, a local keyword for a personal injury lawyer might be “car accident lawyer in Albuquerque” or “workers comp injury rules in New Mexico”.
Local keywords can be especially useful for personal injury lawyers who want to attract clients from a specific geographic area, which is pretty common for law firms.
It’s not enough to just throw the city name in your content most of the time either; sometimes you need to write content on the area itself. How does your firm interact with the community? Is there any industry-relevant news happening in your city? Either of these would prove to Google that you’re engaged with the area, and your search rankings will benefit.
3. Negative keywords
Negative keywords are words or phrases that you do not want your website to show up for in SERPs. This type of keyword is more for paid search advertising, Google is smart enough to not rank you in the Google search results for “car accident lawyer” when your content doesn’t talk about car accident cases (if you happen to not handle those types of cases).
The best thing you can do for negative keywords in SEO is to keep a list of any words that are close to your services, but you don’t want to show up for and give that list to your writers. Most firms won’t really need to focus on negative keywords outside of paid advertising like Google Ads, or Google AdWords, whatever they call it these days.
4. LSI Keywords and Related Keywords
LSI (latent semantic indexing) keywords are words or phrases that are closely related to your main keyword. For example, an LSI keyword for a personal injury lawyer might be “medical malpractice attorney” or “accident lawyer”.
Including LSI search queries on your website can help search engines to better understand the content on your website and can therefore help you to rank higher in SERPs. It also helps make your content more complete in the eyes of Google.
If you have a page about personal injury in general, but describe every possible type of injury case, you likely have a more complete and unique page than competitors, and Google will notice that and rank you higher!
5. Brand name keywords
Brand name keywords are simply the name of your law firm or business. For example, if your law firm is called “Smith & Jones,” then “Smith & Jones” would be a brand name keyword. Including your brand name in your SEO can help you to rank higher for searches of your firm’s name and can also help to build brand awareness.
This usually comes naturally unless you have a very common name for your legal practice. If you do, you might need to use your firm’s name in your content more than the average competitor. “Smith & Jones” in New York might have a few options, so make sure you come up first by using your brand in page titles and content when implementing calls to action.
YOUR LAW FIRM ISN’T RANKING ON GOOGLE!
If clients can’t find you when they’re searching for your specific service, you might as well not exist to them!
These aren’t low quality leads either, these are people dealing with specific issues that YOUR law firm specializes in solving.
They’re looking, begging, for someone to help them.
Don’t you want them to see your firm first?
Let’s Fix It!
Types of Search Intent
Understanding the search intent behind your keywords can be as important as the terms themselves. User intent often tells you how far along the potential client is on their “buying journey”. It may sound strange as an attorney, but the same concept applies.
1. Navigational search intent
Navigational search intent is when a user is looking for a specific website or web page. For example, if a user types in “Facebook” into Google, they are likely looking to navigate to the Facebook homepage.
For your firm, you’ll probably start to see some branded terms show up in your Google Search Console query reports; but in general, these terms are less valuable for SEO.
2. Informational search intent
Informational search intent is when a user is looking for information on a particular topic. For example, if a user types in “what is the average injury case settlement?” into Google, they are likely looking for information on the subject, not necessarily looking to file a case right away.
Sure these aren’t the best keywords because searchers aren’t likely to become leads right then, but they might down the road. In fact, a lot of your legal content marketing will be informational focused, and that’s fine. If you only focus on the transactional keywords (next one!), you’ll come across as someone who only cares about getting cases, not helping people.
Informational keywords are also where the bulk of your search volume will likely come from, but that’s ok. The more you rank for, the easier it’ll be to rank for the best types of personal injury keywords…
3. Transactional search intent
Transactional search intent is when a user is looking to buy something, whether it’s a product or service. For example, if a user types in “file a workers comp lawsuit” into Google, they are likely looking to take that action and move forward.
While these keywords generally have less volume than the bigger informational types, they are the best in the way that these people are actually ready to reach out for your services. Once you learn how to find the good transactional terms your clientele searches, you’ll be able to get new leads everyday with minimal effort.
4. Local search intent
Local search intent is when a user is looking for information on businesses or services in their area. For example, if a user types in “malpractice attorney near me” into Google, they are likely looking for someone local to handle their case.
These local terms can often be combined with other search intents, like transactional, to make some “perfect” keywords to focus on. If someone is showing interest in filing a case AND is looking for that in their area, they’re basically already signed, you just need to make sure they see your firm first!
5. Commercial investigation search intent
Commercial investigation search intent is when a user is considering making a purchase, but wants more information before doing so. For example, if a user types in “James & Smith Law Firm cases won” into Google, they are likely looking for more information about the law firm before deciding whether or not to move forward with them.
These can be a little more tricky considering a lot of people might be looking for third party websites for reviews on your firm. But that’s where reputation management can help. You can make sure your web presence is positive so they get the answer they need to contact you.
Getting Started with the Top Legal Keywords Strategy
If you’re in the process of developing your personal injury lawyer SEO strategy, be sure to utilize a variety of keyword types including long-tail, local, negative, LSI, and brand keywords. By doing so, you can ensure that your website appears in relevant searches and drives traffic that is more likely to convert.
Each type of keyword has its own benefits, and it’s important to use a variety of them in order to get the most out of your SEO strategy.
Long-tail keywords, for example, are a great way to attract traffic that is more likely to convert.
Local keywords can help you to rank higher for searches relevant to your geographic area.
Negative keywords can help you to avoid showing up for irrelevant searches.
And LSI keywords can help you to create content that is more complete and unique in the eyes of Google.
We Can Help!
Not sure where to start or have questions about what top legal keywords are right for you? Our team of experts are ready and waiting to answer all of your questions. Contact us today and we’ll help you develop a winning keyword strategy, or another affordable SEO for law firm strategy, that will help increase leads and grow your business!
May 15, 2022