The 5 Best Law Review Sites – And How To Get Your Law Firm Optimized To Receive Great Reviews
Getting positive law firm reviews on Google My Business (GMB) is one of the simplest ways law firms can generate more and better business online. But getting the right response is the key and there are law firms who simply ignore some of the key steps necessary to make the most of online reviews.
The fact is that reviews are an oft-neglected aspect to many law firm marketing initiatives. Sometime they can create issues to write, but there are some important questions that you need to answer in order to obtain reviews that are going to work for your firm.
Why Get Reviews, Anyway?
Simple – they generate more business.
Here are some key facts about online reviews for any small business that apply to your law firm and its marketing efforts.
First, more reviews lead to more leads for your firm.
It has been shown that close to 90 per cent of consumers trust online reviews as much or more than personal recommendations and so developing your reviews will help generate that extra business.
But – much more significantly – surveys have shown that 94 per cent of online shoppers reported that a negative review has convinced them to avoid visiting a business and buying from them. The same sort of staggering statistic applies to law firms, too. Maybe even more so given the important of legal issues, compared to buying a new washing machine or hair dryer.
This means that whatever your industry, having a positive online presence gives you several key advantages, which is why it’s becoming a key part of branding.
Understanding why you need online reviews will help you optimize your customer experience to help create a positive online footprint. Let’s review these seven reasons why your consumers’ published experiences with your brand are vital.
Second, the more positive the review the more likely to generate a commitment to use your services. It has been shown in a 2020 a review survey that consumers will read at least 10 reviews before feeling confident enough to make a buying decision. Therefore: the more the better.
And today, it is social proof that helps drive sales.
Third, they increase your online visibility and become an essential part of decision-making by those seeking a lawyer. The experience with online shoppers is that at least two-thirds will consider online reviews as a key part of any decision-making.
In other words, you have your law firm there
Four, they help provide authority for your law firm.
Your law firm brand can build significant trust and credibility from a steady stream of positive reviews and help create the authority needed for both new clients and higher Google rankings.
One of the more interesting findings of recent research is just how powerful reviews are at building your company’s online identity.
Five, more reviews mean higher rankings for your firm. That’s a simple one and and an important one. Good reviews provide a major local SEO ranking factor for your law firm, according to Google’s own research.
As BrightLocal SEO research and software firm reports, US consumers are using the Net and its various permutations (think Facebook, Yelp, LinkedIn etc) more than ever, as per the 2020 results shown below –
What are the 5 key questions you need to answer to obtain key reviews
Have we provided top quality service?
Don’t guild the lily by pretending you may have great service or hoping your service was as good as you thought it should be – only request the review when you positively KNOW you have provided top service.
When is the best time to ask for a law firm review?
The timing of requests for reviews is critical. After all, if you are a criminal defense lawyer or you’re handling a difficult domestic law issue it can be hard to ask for a ‘review’. The key question is to ask when there is an outcome that your client is satisfied with.
There’s no point asking your client who’s just been sentenced to a lengthy jail stretch to favorably review your law firm. Obvious.
But when the client is found not guilty or receives a sentence far better than anything he or she might have imagined then the time to ‘review strike’ is perfect. They will (mostly) be grateful. Ask them to post a positive review.
Respond Promptly to Comments
When comments are made with reviews review them promptly and respond promptly and professionally. It goes without saying that negative reviews can be costly in terms of losing or failing to attract clients that might otherwise come to you. It’s important that you remain proactive in managing reviews and comments about your firm and your performance.
Top Law Firm Review Platforms
There are various platforms and sites providing online review opportunities online – some being better than others.
These sites have their own unique ways of indexing and treating their content, and customer reviews can definitely help feed the content machine, keeping your brand favored by algorithms across multiple platforms.
So which are the best platforms for your law firm reviews?
1. Google My Business (GMB)
Google My Business is a review platform that is free and permits law firms to post information and generate reviews along with relevant content. It’s simple to set up and a no-brainer solution for those seeking to generate links, business, profile, higher rankings and . . of course . . reviews.
We have previously written about how to set up your GMB page here.
2. Bing Places
The Bing Places should not be ignored as a key ingredient in achieving higher online visibility on Bing’s platform. Don’t overlook the advantages.
While it may not get quite as much publicity as Google My Business, Bing Places is well worth the effort to achieve higher search engine optimization and to also add to your review-gathering momentum, which can also have spinoffs for your GMB reviews.
If someone likes your firm and your service they will often post more than one review and the benefits that accompany those efforts can pay off significantly in terms of your firm’s online rankings and exposure.
However, the Avvo you need to search for your profile via your directory listing, which you claim and follow the confirmation email directions to set up your profile.
Getting an Avvo rating on a lawyer profile is one of the simplest ways to attract new clients. Unfortunately, it seems that today’s firms aren’t using it to their advantage. In fact, a 2019 survey from the American Bar Association showed that fewer than 15 per cent of respondents surveyed by the ABA used Avvo and other sites. Truly, a lost opportunity.
As a review site, Avvo uses a proprietary algorithm that rates lawyers based on their profile content as well as information from state bar associations and “other organizations that license legal professionals,” as it says. An example is provided here –
Facebook’s multi-billion audience is hardly one to be ignored and you can add reviews via your law firm’s Facebook business manager.
Many law firms are already on Facebook with a page and you may direct clients to the Facebook page to have them forward their review.
You need to add the ‘Reviews’ tab, which will let you click on the reviews section in the navigation menu.
You can then work through the reviews for your firm, working from the Most Helpful, Most Recent, Star Ratings etc. You can also see which reviews you have not commented on, which will permit you to do so after the online prompt.
Monitoring Your Law Firm Reviews
Apart from listing your site with the appropriate platforms, it is the interaction with your clients and prospective clients that can make the difference for your ‘review client’ policy.
The reviews your receive give your law firm an opportunity to create an open and honest view on what sort of law firm you are and what work you do. And most importantly, they also give you a chance to rectify problems that come along with a bad review.
For instance, Medical company MedQuest, was able to significantly improve its review ratings on various sites and volume by improving the rate at which it responded to both negative and positive responses. For instance, its Facebook review volume increased by over 160 per cent while on Google it received more than 23 per cent reviews. The key was monitoring and responding to reviews.
Using reviews properly is one of the most effective and simplest ways any law firm can use to adopt a higher profile and more clients. It is, in many ways, the ‘invisible friend’ for law firms many of which ignore this important weapon in the law firm marketing arsenal.
Don’t let that be your law firm.