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Moore Legal Technology's Blog

Welcome to our blog. Here we'll post news and updates which relate to our core business of helping law firms grow.

Upcoming Event in Leeds on Outsourcing for Law Firms

Moore Legal Technology will be speaking on outsourced web marketing and social media at an exclusive legal event focusing on law firm management, outsourcing and technology on 21 June 2011. The event is a must if you want to find out more about new technologies, outsourced services, better financial management and internet marketing.

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Social Media for Law Firms & Businesses: Avoiding Distraction

With an average of 600 tweets, 34,000 Google searches and 700 Facebook posts being made every second (source: Exact Target), today’s online conversation is a loud one. If harnessed correctly, the rewards for law firms, businesses or other professional organisations can be great. However, if care is not taken, employees and fee earners may be distracted to the point where the firm could lose a lot of money through reduced productivity.

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One blog or two?

Often we speak to law firms and other professional service companies who are interested in setting up 'microsites' to focus on particular service offering, or niche. We generally advise against this for the same reasons that we would generally advise setting up a number of blogs, instead of focusing on one that is already doing well. Our reasons are detailed below, but we would happily go into more detail on any point covered.

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Law Firms: How to generate business online.

I know our posts have been a haphazard in terms of timing, but we’re sticking with it and if you follow our advice you will attract new clients. We’ve given a brief overview of domains and templates and are now ready to move onto on page seo for law firms.

First things first; if you are commissioning a third party to design your website make sure that the following are editable:

1) Page Titles: The most important aspect of online seo – if your page titles aren’t keyword rich you’re onto plums.

2) Descriptions: Although the descriptions are hidden within the code of your site and have little actual relevance in terms of affecting your rankings, they should be drafted carefully as they present one of your first opportunities to get potential visitors to click on your natural results. Essentially they should include reference to page keywords together with clear calls to action (i.e. Phone 0845 620 5664 for free initial advice!)

3)Heading Tags: In the same way as headings in a written document help to identify degrees of importance and natural breaks, heading on a website serve the same function and help to distinguish less important body text frompage headers.

If you don’t have control of any of the above, then our advice would be to go elsewhere.

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There’s no point in buying a Ferrari and keeping it in your garage

Unless you can no longer afford the petrol….

Recently we have been reviewing a lot of professional services firm websites and in spite of the fact that we shouldn’t be, we remain surprised at how many of them are being let down by proprietary content management systems.

Larger organisations often have vast amounts of content and good domain histories, and as such they should routinely rank well for the short tail and longer tail keyphrases related to their services. It would appear that often poor on page optimisation arising from inadequate CMS functionality is holding them back.

Traditionally larger professional service companies would have taken the view that ‘we do not wish to be instructed by members of the public and as such search engine rankings are not important to us’ but as internet usage continues to grow, particularly mobile internet searches, they run the risk of only being found by those who already know them thereby losing out on countless opportunities to grow their brand, extend their influence and reinforce their authority.

Recent research by Forrester (as brought to our attention by Ben at Barker Brooks) titled The Rise of the Digital C-Suite, where ‘C-Suite’ is a term used to describe the chief executives, heads of finance and heads of information at the 10000 most successful companies in the world highlighted that not only is the internet the C-Suite’s top information resource but also that members of the C-Suite search for information themselves.

So, back to the title of this post; if you have a strong professional online presence which is not being presented properly to search engines as a result of a content management system which is not fit for purpose then, effectively, you’re keeping the Ferrari in the garage.

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Are you making the most of your content? Check no 1.

If you’re putting time and effort into creating regular content for your website then you want to be getting the most out of it. There are a range of options for getting your content out there but the first thing you should do is check that your Content Management System (CMS) is doing all it can from an on page optimisation point of view.

The first thing I always do when reviewing a customer site, or potential customer’s site, is have a look at their page titles. If their page titles, as opposed to their article titles, are poorly structured then they are falling at on page ooptimisation hurdle number one (I never thought I would say that).

What is a page title?

When an internet marketeer or search engine optimisation refers to your page title he, or she, is referring to the text which is displayed at the top of the browser bar.

Where this become increasingly important is in the creation of articles, bulletins and news items relating to a service or a company but not specifically designed to attract traffic from a single search engine query. Such items will pick up the longer tail traffic, i.e. traffic arriving from phrases you are unlikely to guess at. Over time such traffic will dwarve that arriving from your very specific keyword targets, particularly where your site contains a depth of content.

In such circumstances, if your page title does not reflect the nature of your content, perhaps by dynamically picking up article titles, then your CMS is letting you down and you are not maximising your efforts.

What should you do?

Check out your articles to see if the page titles vary from article to article and display a title relevant to the content. If they don’t get on to your developers and give them the hairdryer treatment.

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Legal Website Design: What makes them click?

There has been a lot of research done into what makes people click. Most of this relates to websites offering products for sale, as opposed to professional services, but it is interesting to look at a couple of the key principles and apply them to legal website design for lawyers.

1. Reviews: Often we are swayed by what others are saying about a product, in spite of the fact that we usually have absolutely no idea what makes them qualified to comment. This behavioural phenomenon is known as social validation and its closest cousin in the offline world is probably a referral, or recommendation, from someone you hardly know.

Client testiomonials are probably the closest things lawyers can get to a review of their product and these should be prominently displayed on the service pages they relate to.

2. Include Pictures and Stories: Use client experiences and previous cases to tell a story which your potential client can relate to. Use pictures as a way of giving your potential clients a point of reference for their story; something they will latch onto and associate with. We generally work on combining a picture of the partner/fee earner who works on particular cases with individual client pictures where available.

Once you get traffic arriving at your site you have to work at hard at converting it into new business. Learn from the experiences of other service providers to make the most out of your online assets.

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McSporrans - Online business generation

mcsporrans

McSporrans are a small yet innovative firm of Edinburgh solicitors specialising in all aspects of criminal law, road traffic law and criminal defence.

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The Glasgow Law Practice - Virtual shop window

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Glasgow Law Practice SEO for law firms quote

The Glasgow Law Practice is Carr & Company's online presence.

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HBM Sayers - Technology as a core differentiator

HBM Sayers Quote
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CaseCheck - Market Leading Legal Resouce

casecheck
CaseCheck legal website design quote

We are the driving force behind CaseCheck, which has quickly established itself as the most innovative legal resource in the UK.

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Burness LLP - Technology for large scale litigation

Burness LLP

Moore Legal Technology assisted Burness LLP with the introduction of litigation technology to their Dispute Resolution

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Beltrami & Company - Online Business Generation

beltrami

Beltrami and Company are independently recognised as Glasgow's leading firm of criminal lawyers.

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