A search engine result page (SERP) is the page generated by Google, Yahoo, or Bing displaying URLs from online resources that are most relevant to a user’s search. SERPs are important for any law firm investing time in digital marketing to pay attention to. By reviewing a SERP and identifying what’s working well and what’s missing, you can create high-quality content that best addresses a potential claimant’s needs and drive more traffic to your site.
Step One: Find a Good Query
Before you “investigate” a SERP, you’ll need to pick a query that’s related to your area of law. You’ll want to focus on a query that gets a fair amount of traffic. There are a lot of tools you could use to estimate keyword volume. Google Keyword Planner is one option many digital marketers use, but you’ll find that the estimated volume is often wildly different than what you’ll actually see online. For this example, we’ll use “do you need a social security advocate.” Here’s a screenshot of some of the results:
Step Two: Review Title Tags
The title tag is the big blue text you see when you’re about to click on a link on the SERP. A title tag is important because it’ll be the most compelling visual for users. If you don’t have a good title tag, nobody will click on your link. Looking at these title tags on the SERP, it looks like most of the titles aren’t addressing our query of “do you need a social security advocate?” Nolo’s title addresses the point, but doesn’t quite hit the search perfectly because it doesn’t talk about if you need an advocate, rather if you should hire an advocate.
Step Three: Review Meta Descriptions
A meta description is the text seen directly underneath the title of a URL on a SERP. A meta description is a second opportunity for you to inspire a user to click on your link over the competition on the SERP. The ideal length for a meta description is hard to determine—most SEOs recommend you making them no longer than 150 characters, because Google can (and will) add text to your own meta description.
Some of the meta descriptions in this examples look like they could use some help. For example, the meta description under the SSA’s first link is too long, so Google truncated it. The SSA’s second meta description, on the other hand, is too short and isn’t utilizing all of the space available.
Step Four: Create a Piece of Content to Fit Into Your SERP
After you’ve analyzed a SERP and seen where competitors seem to fall flat, you’ll want to work on creating a piece of content that would best address users’ need for that specific query.
It looks like the content on this SERP isn’t addressing whether you’re required to have an attorney or advocate with you for a Social Security case. You could write an article on how an attorney isn’t required, but will dramatically increase your odds of winning a case. You could also highlight the pros of working with an attorney, such as having someone able to defend your case in court or help coordinate sending additional medical documents to the SSA.
Something you’ll want to keep in mind is that one page of content will rank for many keywords. You can do the same SERP analysis for related keywords to find other snippets or tidbits you could incorporate into your primary page of content to help it rank for multiple queries.
Evaluating a SERP can be a very valuable way to supplement your current digital marketing effort and outrank your competitors, but it does take a fair amount of time and research. If you don’t have a dedicated SEO team writing content for your firm, it may not be feasible in house. Lead generation is a great way to supplement your current digital marketing efforts. We currently offer Social Security disability, personal injury, workers’ compensation, and FDCPA leads nationwide. Give eGen a call at 617-800-0089 to learn more about our pricing and availability in your area today.