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SEO for Family Law Attorneys

October, 18 2022
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Ben Johnson
familiy lawyer

SEO for family law attorneys is a group of strategies dedicated to gaining organic traffic through search engines, and it’s largely based on content.

Optimize your family law content for search engines and you will reap the benefits in the form of additional online traffic, appointments, and calls.

However, no two SEO marketing campaigns are the same.  The best SEO marketing for lawyers is characterized by unparalleled attention to detail, an in-depth understanding of the web, and a comprehension of human psychology.  Implement the best practices for family law SEO as detailed below, be patient, and your inbound marketing campaign will gradually steer more clients to your practice.

What is SEO for Family Attorneys?

It wasn’t long ago when family lawyers connected with new clients through local referrals, billboards, TV commercials, and radio spots.  While those can still be effective forms of marketing, they’re not the big player.

Family law attorneys that shift their marketing strategy to the web maximize market share in the short-term and also across posterity. Search Engine Optimiation (SEO) is a process in which lawyer websites and web content is optimized for search engines. SEO is the best way to optimize online content for those in need of family law assistance, and it’s how your website can appear higher up in search engines.

Search Engine Results Page

The subtle nuances of online content have the potential to make the difference between an influx of traffic to your family law website and minimal online engagement.

Target Audience

Merely creating a polished family law website is not enough.  The entirety of your family law firm’s online footprint must be carefully and strategically tailored to search engine algorithms as well as the specific information your target audience is searching for.

Take a moment to consider what your target audience searches for when they surf the web over to a search engine such as Google.  Most local searchers type in their city or town name along with the service or product they seek.  In the context of a family law firm in Salt Lake City, for example, locals are likely to type “Salt Lake City” or “SLC” and “family lawyer” or “matrimonial lawyer” into search engines.  Others in need of family law services might search for “divorce lawyer” and “Salt Lake City” or even type in their local zip code, neighborhood, street name, and/or other local identifiers. These are the types of things that can be included on your website in order to get in front of the right target audience.

Search Engine Search Queries

Adding Keywords

Mixing in local identifiers throughout your online content is only part of the battle to capture market share, however.  Your family law firm must also incorporate strategic keywords and key phrases throughout blog posts, webpages, social media, and other parts of your online footprint.

There is a common misconception that inundating online content with words and phrases such as “family law lawyer” and “divorce law in [city]” will suffice for divorce lawyer SEO and also help in the overarching context of family law SEO.  Google and other search engines penalize family law firms and other businesses/people for overloading content with family law keywords and key phrases.

The “sweet spot” of SEO is a keyword saturation rate/density rate of 0.5% to 2.5%.  In plain terms, online content with 1,000 words should have about 20 keywords or phrases to maximize divorce lawyer SEO.  Saturate your online content with keywords/phrases beyond this density rate and you run the risk of search engines limiting your rate of ascension up the search engine results pages (SERPs) or even reducing your site’s ranking for excessive keyword use.

Website Design and the Goals of SEO

The design of your family law website is just as important as the content on its pages.  The best family law attorneys and firm partners view web backend development and the user experience design of the site as the metaphorical skeleton.  The substantive component of the content represents the meat on the bones.

Family Law KC

Google and other search engines have been updating their search algorithms to account for the user experience design of the website, so having a great design is crucial.

A family law website designed for flawless functionality on regular desktop computers, laptops, tablets, and smartphones is rewarded accordingly by Google’s updated search engine algorithms.  Furthermore, the search engine’s algorithms look at the speed at which pages load.

The moral of the SEO story for family law attorneys is that the subtleties of the firm’s website, blog, social media, and other pages have the potential to make or break the business.  If the website design is inferior, clunky, unresponsive, slow to load, or visually plain, your users won’t have a pleasant experience and your rankings will likely drop.  Put in the time and effort to create a family law website with an appealing design and you will have successfully laid the foundation for a successful SEO push.

Above all, prioritize the user experience design.  Put yourself in the position of prospective family law clients, review your website content from that lens and make the necessary improvements.

Keyword Research

Keywords and key phrases are the bedrock of a successful SEO campaign.  However, most family law attorneys are unaware as to what, exactly, their target audience searches for when surfing the web.

There is a general misconception that everyone in need of a family law attorney will simply type “family law” into Google or another search engine and click through several pages of results.  Though some prospective clients in need of family law attorney services will limit their search to such brevity, most will enter more detailed information for the sake of relevancy.  Furthermore, most people are unwilling to click more than a page or two of the SERPs as reviewing multiple pages of search results is time-consuming.

Your family law firm will gradually move up the SERPs with the strategic use of relevant keywords and key phrases.  Shift perspectives to consider what your target audience is most likely to search for when using Google or another search engine.  The optimal keywords and key phrases for your family law firm center on your practice area and services as well as location.

Keyword Ideas

Those in need of family law legal services are likely to type the following words and phrases into search engines:

  • Family law
  • Divorce law
  • Divorce lawyer
  • Divorce attorney
  • Adoption attorney
  • Prenuptial agreement
  • Domestic partnership
  • Common law marriage
  • Child support alimony
  • Local identifiers such as city, town, zip code, area code, landmarks, etc.

Strategically using some of the keywords and key phrases listed above will certainly help your law firm steer online traffic your way.  Be aware that some keywords are more relevant than others for your specific services.

For example, the keyword “divorce” is more important to a family law firm than the keyword “matrimonial” or “child visitation.” Typically, more locals type “divorce” into search engines when separating from a spouse.  The word “divorce” has a comparably high search volume and relevancy to family law than other words/phrases.

Keyword Intention

Keyword intent also matters in the context of SEO family law.  Consider the intention of the web searcher looking for the guidance and expertise of a family law attorney.  Keyword intent is the underlying purpose of the online search.


keywords for family lawyers seoIntent in the context of family and divorce lawyer SEO indicates the potential action someone is likely to perform when searching the web for a specific word or string of words.

Though you can’t be sure of what a searcher will do after searching online, patterns reveal the prospect’s motive.  Research your target audience, get a sense of what they are searching for, and analyze the intent behind those searches.

Keyword Difficulty

No two keywords are exactly the same.  Some keywords are considered easy to rank for, while others are considered difficult. There are many tools online that can help you distinguish between these types of keywords.

Content & On-Page SEO

Now that you’ve found keywords you want to rank for, how do you actually rank? By far, the most effective way to rank is to consistently produce content that’s relevant and optimized–and this optimization process is called “on-page SEO.”

The purpose of on-page SEO is to boost search ranking and maximize search engine traffic.  In short, your family law firm’s online content must be crafted with keyword rankings in mind.

Extend your on-page SEO beyond the homepage to practice areas, Contact, and About pages, and any article content you produce.

The best on-page SEO is also characterized by the optimal headers, links, meta descriptions, and title tags.  Even labeling images with descriptive words plays a role in family law SEO success.

Title Tags

Title tags are relatively subtle yet they are also underrated in the context of family law SEO.

family lawyer SEO title tags

The best SEO title tags contain the target keyword.  The target keyword communicates to Google and other search engines that the family law webpage in question is meaningful to the search.  Above all, SEO title tags are important as they provide enough information to motivate searchers to click webpages after viewing the specific word or string of words entered into the search engine.

Meta Descriptions

Meta descriptions are brief snippets that describe the information presented on a webpage, just under the title tag.

family lawyer seo meta descriptions

Family law attorneys that optimize their meta descriptions receive an SEO boost in the weeks, months, and years that follow.  The best meta descriptions include keywords and key phrases the target audience is inclined to search for.

The meta description is essentially a summary of a webpage displayed when a web ad specifically ranks for a certain keyword or keyphrase.  Be open to changing your meta descriptions regularly to see which has the best click-through rate (CTR).


Headers are another element to optimize on all your pages.  Headings and headers are best described as HTML tags that communicate to a browser what style should be used to present text on a page.  Examples of header tags include H1, H2, H3, etc.  Header tags are positioned around the headings and subheadings of online content, enhancing SEO all the more.

Headers are important in the context of SEO as they communicate the “meat” of the page’s subject. Headers have two roles, one for search engines and one for users.  They help crawlers facilitate comprehension of the content. For users, they help break up long portions of text. Though it is unnecessary to jam keywords into headers at every opportunity, strategically adding them improves your family law SEO all the more.

Link Building Through Internal Links and External Links

Presenting keyword-laden information on web pages and social media will not suffice in the battle to capture market share.  Your family law firm must also incorporate a strategic backlink plan.  Link building entails other websites sending a link to yours. The higher-quality links you have (and the more of them you have), the more search engines will view your website as a trusted source to send users to.

Be sure to also send some links to other sources from your own website. The incorporation of such “outbound” links temporarily steers visitors away from your value proposition, yet doing so reinforces your family law firm’s legitimacy.

Some family law firms include links to local events within blog posts and social media to ingratiate the firm with members of the community at a deeper level.  Make it clear that your website and family law firm do not exist in an information silo, establish legitimacy with the use of strategic outbound links, and locals in need of family law services will be that much more inclined to schedule a consultation.

Technical SEO

SEO for family law has quickly become highly technical.  It wasn’t long ago when a website featuring a 2.5% keyword saturation rate of only a couple of relevant keywords/phrases could zoom toward the first couple of pages of the SERPs.  Technical SEO refers to the crawling and indexing of a website, website security, accessibility, and other components.  Your family law firm will be partially judged by search engines based on its technical components such as page load time on mobile web-connected devices as well as overall functionality and presentation.

Website optimizations make it easier for “spiders” utilized by search engines to “crawl” your family law site. Soon, you’ll find the site is indexed that much better.  An effectively indexed family law website will ultimately enjoy superior organic rankings.

Google Business Profile for Local SEO

Completing the entirety of your firm’s Google Business Profile and other profiles across the web’s top directories is crucial to your success locally.

Google Business Profile for Lawyers

A comprehensive Business Profile featuring all the relevant details about your firm connects with locals in need of your services.  Doing so will help your firm stand out in search results and rank in the “local map pack.”

Local Map Pack for Personal Injury Lawyers

Be sure to check out our blog on Google Business Profiles to learn more about this important strategy.

Continue to Measure Results

An SEO for family law push is not a one-time event.  Instead of viewing an SEO campaign as something that temporarily steers online traffic to your website, view it as a work in progress.  Establish a Google Analytics account and you’ll have all the information you need to measure the results of your campaign.

google analytics SEO

Google’s SEO programs range from Analytics to the Search Console and Tag Manager. These programs help family law attorneys determine which pages are effective and which are ineffective.  Continue to monitor your firm’s Google Analytics as time progresses, implement changes, and continue to improve your site’s content accordingly.

Carefully Craft Your Family Law Firm’s Call-to-Action

The call to action is your firm’s all-important lasting impression on prospective clients.  The best family law websites end with an enthusiastic prompt to take decisive action. Make sure that your call-to-action is specific and easy to see on the page.

Contact Law Firm Sites Today

Your family law firm’s SEO is more important than its traditional outbound advertising through channels such as TV and radio.  Make a concerted effort to connect with prospective clients through artfully presented and carefully crafted SEO content, be patient and it won’t take long to fill your consultation calendar.

Reach out to Law Firm Sites today for SEO services and inbound marketing guidance that helps your family law practice reach and maintain its true potential.  Give our legal SEO experts a call today at (800) 932-8242.

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