Reviews & Reputation
Google is the number one recommended site to get reviews, which are featured most prominently in Google search and can sometimes be a deciding factor someone considers when choosing which law firm to click on within their search results.
Lawyer-specific sites are also great places to showcase reviews. It’s important to remember that not everyone goes to these sites, but if they are familiar with attorneys or are other attorneys looking for a peer, these are excellent for garnishing and showcasing reviews.
Many people use social networks to recommend places to their friends and family, which is why Facebook is excellent for collecting reviews. LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram don’t have a review feature, so Facebook is primarily used for social media reviews.
The Better Business Bureau’s site provides potential clients with information so they can get an idea if a law firm provides excellent service or has unethical practice complaints. However, not every business is a member of the BBB, which may require membership dues/payments before your firm can be listed on their site. If you do have a listing with the BBB, take advantage of using it, as this is a good place to get reviews.
Yelp is a very popular review outlet, especially for restaurants, but they are known for filtering most of their reviews. Individual users who review a business, for the most part, must be very active on Yelp and follow strict guidelines to have their review prominently showcased for any particular business.
Your reputation is everything. You graduated law school near the top of your class. You put in grueling hours in law school and 2,000+ billable hours years when you started practicing. You finally made partner. Your reputation is golden.
Now on a random Wednesday, after all this hard work, you receive a 1-star review. Worst yet, it was from a crazy client, who you didn’t even really want to help.
We all know that online reviews are essential for businesses, but online reviews are especially crucial for law firms. You are the firm. This isn’t just business. This is personal.
But what to do? We will help showcase why reviews are important, how to setup reviews now (so that the above doesn’t happen to you), and what to do if some random client decides to give you a poor review.
Why Reviews Matter
Positive online business reviews help a law firm’s reputation in three ways:
1) they create a shield
2) reviews promote your business
3) Reviews can help your SEO.
Reviews as a Reputation Shield
First, your online reviews create a reputation shield. At some point in time every lawyer will receive a negative review. If you have built up enough positive reviews, then this negative review won’t matter. If you have only two reviews and an angry client leaves you a negative review, then yes that can look bad. But if you have 50 positive 5-star reviews and a single person leaves a 1-star, then that reviewer actually looks like the outcast.
You need to create that shield. You need to make sure that when the time comes, you already have reviews in place to counteract the one malevolent actor.
Reviews Promote Your Business
Your friend just referred you a potential client. The first thing someone does when deciding on whether to hire you is to Google your firm. Reviews automatically showcase on Google’s search results. Is your firm a 5.0? 4.9? 4.5? 3.0? You need to have enough reviews to showcase your firm’s talent and reputation. Online reviews can:
- Help set you apart from your competitors
- Show prospective clients that your firm is credible
- Sends an authoritative signal to Google
- Increases site conversions and rankings
There is an entire science behind how critical reviews are and how they ultimately impact our decision-making processes, but what is interesting is how these ratings influence law firm’s rankings online.
Studies show that for someone to hire an attorney or law firm to represent them, they want to see reviews of four stars or higher, and unfortunately, poor reviews directly correlate into lost leads and a decrease in revenue.
However, just as important as the quality of the reviews is the quantity. If you have a couple of five-star reviews, potential clients will likely interpret this to mean that you don’t have enough clients. That’s why having a critical balance between quality and quantity is necessary if you want to achieve success and garnish online leads for your law firm.
Google Reviews Can Help Boost SEO
Google reviews are a powerful tool. Having several positive reviews on Google shows that your firm has a solid reputation and established authority within the legal industry. Reviews indirectly help your site’s SEO. The more positive reviews you have, the higher the chances people will click on your site when they search for law firms. More clicks mean that Google notices the increase in website visits, which is an indirect result of positive reviews.
Additionally, if you have a testimonial page as part of your website that highlights your positive reviews, and potential clients complete your contact form page, you’ll have more conversions, which Google also takes into consideration when recommending search results.
Once you receive at least five positive Google reviews, the best way to boost your SEO is to include Google Rich Snippet Code, which enables the rating to show up in search results for your firm and in the subpages for your website. Utilizing this robust code offers your site better exposure and a more impressive click-through rate on your organic listings.
Managing Online Business Reviews
Obtaining online reviews for your business is a critical component of your law firm’s online reputation management. If you aren’t sure how to get reviews, and what steps you should follow, use our basic outline below. These straightforward tips will allow you to create an online reputation for your firm and manage any negative feedback in the most productive way possible.
We will Help You Get the Best Reviews
Obtaining business reviews can be extremely beneficial in the display of your law firm’s online rankings. Positive online business reviews are an essential part of your reputation as a business and can strengthen your SEO efforts. Having a plethora of positive reviews also sets your firm apart from your competitors, proves credibility to prospective clients and sends a strong authority signal to Google.
AAM’s SEO team creates custom action plans to help your law firm gain and optimize reviews.
AAM can add a review page to your website, which will make it easier for your clients to leave you positive reviews. The review page is a convenient link that makes it simple for law firms to send clients after cases are satisfactorily settled or won in court. This page can either be accessed online or hidden from search engines.
We can help your law firm get their online review sites set up so that you can begin collecting your initial five Google reviews. You will need a minimum of five reviews, which Google requires to display your overall star rating online.
Google Rich Snippet Code
Once you have five Google reviews, we can help you set up a Google Rich Snippet code on your website. Having this rich snippet installed means that your star rating will appear even if you are outside of the local map pack, which provides added exposure and better click-through rates on your organic listings. AAM can set up your website in a way that tells Google to show the review as a rich snippet in the search results page.