When potential clients run online searches for lawyers in your region of West Virginia, who do they find? And what can you do to influence Google results?
You may be surprised to learn that you have control or influence over many of the factors search engines use to find and rank relevant law firm results in WV. If you’re unfamiliar with those factors, skim Search Engine Watch’s article: An In-Depth Guide to Google Ranking Factors, published in January 2018.
The WV law firm SEO analysis in this article will also help you begin to understand how to compete for the attention of search engines and users alike.
TwoDogBlog’s WV Law Firm SEO Analysis
In May 2018, the TwoDogBlog analyzed websites for all attendees who preregistered for the West Virginia Association of Justice (WVAJ) 2018 Mid-Winter Conference, 79 websites in total. The cumulative results of this analysis are published on this page to enable West Virginia law firms to evaluate their technical search engine optimization (SEO) and to compare their law firm website SEO to that of neighboring firms. Attorneys who lack familiarity with the power of SEO may wish to start by reading What Is SEO?
Limitations of Our SEO Analysis
The TwoDogBlog’s analysis considered only a limited number of factors that influence search engine performance. It is important to remember that law firm SEO is multi-faceted, including technical aspects such as those examined, as well as many other factors. The TwoDogBlog specializes in helping firms troubleshoot and improve their SEO using techniques such as site audits; competitor analysis; and strong, optimized legal content.
Our WV Law Firm SEO Analysis: Methodology
The TwoDogBlog used an online tool to gather information about 5 technical SEO areas that commonly affect search performance: (1) common SEO issues; (2) speed optimization; (3) server and security issues; (4) mobile usability issues; and (5) advanced SEO issues. Law firms who want to address these issues internally may find this article from Moz about technical SEO problems useful. Of course, the TwoDogBlog can help firms resolve these issues as well.
On the whole, the results of this analysis show enormous opportunity for WV firms choosing to embrace and pursue search engine optimization. In addition to the current results, a review by the TwoDogBlog in the fall of 2017 showed that less than 2% of WV law firms with 3 or more attorneys followed best practices for on-page SEO.
The State of Technical SEO Use by WV Lawyers
Here’s how the TwoDogBlog conducted its WV law firm SEO analysis. The tool we used provided a score for technical SEO use between 0 and 100, with 0 being the lowest possible score and 100 being the highest possible score. We then crunched some numbers to provide helpful data to WV attorneys who wanted to know how their firms fared in comparison to others.
In this analysis, WV law firm technical SEO scores ranged from a low of 52 to a high of 96. The average score was 78, with a standard deviation of 11. Following is a bell curve distribution of all 79 scores.
WV Regional Results
To allow firms to compare their technical SEO scores with those of their neighbors, we divided the state into eight regions: Eastern Highlands, Eastern Panhandle, Metro Valley, Mid-Ohio Valley, New River-Greenbrier Valley, North Central, Northern Panhandle, and Southern Mountains.
Eastern Highlands (Barbour, Grant, Hampshire, Hardy, Mineral, Pendleton, Preston, Randolph, Tucker, Upshur, Webster)
Only one score was reported in the eastern highlands region of the state, a 67.
Eastern Panhandle (Berkeley, Jefferson, Morgan)
The range of technical SEO scores for this region was 81-92, showing a stronger use of technical SEO than the state average. The average score was nearly one standard deviation higher as well at 87.
Metro Valley (Cabell, Putnam, Kanawha)
The Charleston-Huntington corridor showed the greatest variation in scores and had a slightly lower score overall than the state average. The range of scores in this region was from 52 through 94, inclusive. The average score was 76.
Mid-Ohio Valley (Calhoun, Jackson, Mason, Pleasants, Roane, Ritchie, Tyler, Wetzel, Wirt, Wood)
Scores of law firms in this region of West Virginia ranged between 71 and 89, with an average score of 81, higher than the statewide average of 78.
New River-Greenbrier Valley (Fayette, Greenbrier, Mercer, Monroe, Nicholas, Pocahontas, Raleigh, Summers)
The mean technical SEO score in this part of the Mountain State was 79, which is slightly higher than the statewide average. The range in this region spanned from 58 through 93.
North Central (Braxton, Clay, Doddridge, Gilmer, Harrison, Lewis, Marion, Monongalia, Taylor)
The results of several firms in this area included a wide range, from 62 through 96. Although the average score paralleled the state average of 78, a Monongalia firm received the state’s highest score.
Northern Panhandle (Brooke, Hancock, Marshall, Ohio)
The counties of West Virginia’s northern panhandle scored approximately on par with the balance of the state. The mean score was 78 and the range was from 63 through 90.
Southern Mountains (Boone, Lincoln, Logan, McDowell, Mingo, Wayne, Wyoming)
Scores for law firm attendees from the southern coalfields averaged 79, slightly higher than the statewide mean. These scores were relatively compressed, ranging from only 75 through 84.
Opportunities to Improve Your WV Law Firm SEO—Right Here at Home
Remember that regardless of your firm’s performance, this report evaluates only a few measures of search engine optimization. One of the most important steps you can take to improve your firm’s rankings is to publish high-quality content on a regular basis. At the TwoDogBlog, we help improve WV law firm SEO for our clients every day.
The TwoDogBlog is unique because we combine law degrees and publishing experience with SEO knowledge. This distinctive skill set allows us to draft high-quality, accurate legal content that performs online. And all with minimal involvement on your part.
You’ll always know where your firm stands in rankings and search performance with regular client updates. Contact us to see sample results today: (304) 205-3390.