Using Google Ads for law firms is very different than using Google Ads for other industries. Unlike online retailers who generally benefit from a wide-reaching PPC (pay-per-click) campaign, each law firm requires a specialized Google Ads approach for Google Ads to provide a decent return on investment.
One important distinction in advertising a law firm is that traditionally, new clients are likely to seek out word-of-mouth recommendations. In recent years law firms receive an increasing number of clients coming from online search—a 2017 Legal Trends Report by Clio estimated that 37% of consumers use online search to find a lawyer.
To check how competitive the legal marketplace is for your city, open Google and search “city + lawyer” or “city + law firm” and check out the listings. If your law firm isn’t listed prominently on the first page of Google, you can bet the businesses listed are capturing a good chunk of your marketing share.
Which law firms can benefit from Google Ads?
Generally speaking, firms with a broader law practice benefit more from PPC marketing. This is because these more general practice areas tend to experience a higher search volume online, as people are more inclined to use online search to browse for options. These include:
- Immigration law
- Trusts and Estates
- Personal Injury
- Criminal defense
- Family Law
On the other hand, firms that are highly specialized may be less likely to benefit from PPC advertising. To find a lawyer in a specific niche, people often ask for a referral from their general counsel. When they do look up the law firm online, it’s generally because they’ve already been given the name of a specific lawyer as a referral. These niches include:
- Securities law
- Election law
- International law
- White collar defense
- Complex corporate bankruptcy
- Antitrust law
Long story short, people pay attention to ads that are relevant.
When an ad is relevant, this means that the ad’s content, format, channel of delivery, and timing are all relevant to whoever the ad’s target audience is.
Facts about Google Ads for Lawyers in Canada
While the Canadian legal market is not as competitive online as in the U.S., where keywords for legal terms regularly top the list of most expensive PPC bids, Canadian law firms still face a competitive online environment.
Here are some keyword phrases for lawyers in various cities in B.C.
Best Practices: Google Ads for Law Firms
Invest in research on the best keywords for law firms
Choosing the best keywords can determine the success of your marketing campaigns. A Google Ads specialist is needed to look at keywords related specifically to your practice—they’ll research historical search data provided by Google and select the most relevant, highest-performing keywords to maximize visitor engagement and leads.
Use a Google Ad specialist
The competitive landscape in PPC advertising for lawyers in Canada demonstrates the importance of a highly tailored online advertising campaign created by a PPC specialist. An experienced Google Ads specialist has the training to configure the advertising campaign to incorporate factors such as a firm’s specialization and location—factors with a strong influence over a law firm’s online advertising strategy.
For maximum results, combine SEO & Google Ads
Using paid ads to bring in new leads is only part of a robust online marketing strategy. It’s also important to optimize your website for organic search, conducting search engine optimization (SEO). In SEO, a specialist improves components of your website such as your sitemap, links, alt text, and keywords in order to elevate your ranking in organic search.
You may be wondering, “Why do SEO when I’ve already paid for an ad to show up at the top of the Google search results?”. You’ve likely seen many cases in which a single company shows up multiple times in your search results—the top results might be a paid ad, then an organic listing of the company’s homepage, and then a listing that links to a relevant article from the company’s blog. Using a robust strategy that combines organic SEO and advertising will provide the greatest market reach and you’re business a competitive edge.
Pay-Per-Click Advertising for Law Firms
Where to begin? Start by getting in touch with a trusted digital marketing company who can provide you with all the data you’ll need to make the best decisions in forming realistic advertising goals and allocating a marketing budget.
We encourage our clients to follow these guidelines for building a Google Ads campaign:
- Set Goals
- Set Budget
- Do a trial period (3 months)
- Evaluate your results
Online marketing is quickly becoming an important component of a law firm’s marketing strategy. In a competitive and expensive online advertising landscape, a highly tailored approach to PPC directed by a Google Ads specialist is the best way to ensure your practice gets the most value from each click.