GMB Ranking Guide

For local Law Firms today, there are numerous different ways to market your firm online. The majority of your potential clients still use Google to find local businesses near them — businesses where they will spend their hard-earned money. In fact, 80% of searches with “local intent” result in a conversion.

This begs the question: “What’s the best way to catch the attention of local searchers on Google?”

The answer: through Google Maps marketing.

What is Google Maps marketing?

Google Maps marketing is the process of optimizing the online presence of your brand in Google Maps, with the goal of increasing your brand’s online visibility.

Google Maps marketing utilizes a number of strategies and tactics to help your Law Firm become one of those three positions on local map packs.

The reason every Law Firm should care about ranking in Google Maps is simple: potential brand visibility.

It’s no surprise that Google is by far the most popular search engine. But what about Google Maps specifically?

One study found that nearly 70% of smartphone users say they use Google Maps most frequently. On top of that, out of the 3.5 billion searches that happen on Google each day, more and more are considered to have local intent. According to Google, 83% of U.S. people who visited a store said they used online search before going in.

Thus, any business that is serious about getting found in this day and age needs to utilize the power behind Google Maps marketing. This is why we focus much of our local SEO time on getting our clients to rank both in Google Maps AND organic search results.

What is Google My Business (GMB)?

Google My Business (GMB) is a free platform provided by Google where local businesses can create a profile that is displayed across a variety of Google products.

In order to qualify for a GMB profile you must make in-person contact with your customers during your stated business hours. This may mean that you have a brick-and-mortar location where customers come to see you, or perhaps you travel to see your customers.

The purpose of creating a Google My Business pro le for your Law Firm is to increase your rankings, traffic, and revenue.

It’s no surprise that Google is by far the most popular search engine. But what about Google Maps specifically?

How to Optimize for Google Maps?

To kickoff, your optimizations, double-check that ALL of your Law Firm information is filled out in full and 100% accurate. This includes adding the many services that you might offer as well as descriptions of those services.

1) Get More Online Reviews

Reviews continue to be one of the most important components for ranking in Google Maps, but the benefit of building more reviews is not purely for the purpose of SEO (not by a long shot).

Reviews offer a much better client experience. They help to build up social proof, manage customer expectations, and they can sell your service before you even get in touch with your potential client.

Law Firm owners must regularly train themselves (and their team) to ask their clients for reviews. It’s important to set up systems and processes to make review generation a regular occurrence.

I also recommend setting up a process or purchasing a service that helps with review management. These 3rd party services and software licenses offer the ability to monitor the flow of reviews as well as comment and reply to those reviews as they come in (all in one cohesive dashboard). Always reply to your reviews!

2) Build local links

Links are still one of the largest ranking factors in Google’s algorithm (both in organic ranking and in Google Maps). In fact, building LOCAL links is especially important if you want to rank in Google Maps.

It’s true that any link that isn’t marked as ‘no follow, ‘UGC’, or ‘sponsor’ will pass “authority”, which will likely help with rankings. However, local links are especially important because they have a much higher probability of driving actual business.

Law Firm owners must regularly train themselves (and their team) to ask their clients for reviews. It’s important to set up systems and processes to make review generation a regular occurrence.

One of the best ways to start building local links is to utilize your local relationships. Think about other businesses that you work with, organizations that you support, or even companies that might qualify as a “shoulder niche”. Do you collaborate with financial planners, realtors, bankruptcy lawyers, chiropractors, etc where they would link from their website to yours.

For the highest success rate, start with businesses that you already have a relationship with or know well. You could offer to write or record a testimonial in exchange for a link, or perhaps you could co-create a piece of content that benefits both of your audiences.

3) Fight off GMB spam in the map

This final optimization is less of an “optimization” and more of a tactic. This tactic is powerful because unlike most GMB optimizations, the goal is not to do something better than your competition, it’s to remove the competitors that are trying to cheat their way to higher rankings.

Unfortunately, Google Maps still has quite a bit of spam throughout its ecosystem. In fact, out of the top 20 spots in the example above, I was able to find seven fake listings and three more that were extremely questionable. This approach can work whether a listing is using an improper business name, keyword stuffing, or is a fake location entirely.

Schedule A Free Call Today!

Get Started Now

Ready To Make a Real Change?

Let’s Grow Your Law Firm Together!

Follow Law Firm Marketing Services On Social Media