How to Get More Online Reviews for Your Law Firm
For law firms getting good reviews and lots of them is a must for client conversion and reputation management. Let’s look at the stats:
Researchers asked hundreds of participants from across the country, ages 21-65 with a mix of genders, how important they thought online reviews from search engines like Google Yahoo & Bing and legal directories like Avvo were when choosing whether to hire a lawyer.
- Almost 84% of respondents said they would not even engage an attorney who had less than a four-star average review
- About 24% said they would not engage a lawyer who had less than a five-star average review
- Only 8.54% said online reviews did not matter when deciding whether to hire an attorney
Online reviews are free marketing for your law practice. When prospective clients search for a lawyer, their main goal is to find an attorney they can trust. They may be experiencing an incredibly stressful time in their life—a divorce, an on-the-job injury, or even a criminal charge. They need to know that you have a proven track record and have dealt with cases like theirs before.
Most people do not need a lawyer very often in life, so they will likely ask their friends and family for recommendations—or search Google. When potential clients find your law office online, will they Find positive reviews that convince them to hire you? In the competitive legal field, your online reputation is everything. These are the top 5 reasons why your Firm needs online reviews.
4 Ways Lawyer Reviews Can Help Your Practice
01. Reach More Clients Organically
Client reviews are more impactful when they appear not just on your website, where many consumers may think they are fake or cherry-picked, but by earning reviews across social media, search engines, and lawyer-specific review platforms like Avvo.com. You can reach a broader audience organically—and more authentically through reviews. Google Reviews are one of the most popular forms of reviews, but many consumers also consult Facebook, Yelp, and other local business review platforms. Facebook reviews are also a powerhouse of information, and some younger clients may prefer to search social media when looking for representation. Additionally, you can try asking clients for reviews on Avvo, Lawyers.com, and other industry-specific reviews sites. Make sure to collect reviews across all possible sources to target different audiences and maintain a unified online presence.
02. Improve Search Rankings
Building online reviews is an easy and effective way to boost your website’s local search engine rankings. You’ll notice when you type in the name of your firm in Google search, the first result is often your Google My Business listing. Within your listing are Google Reviews. When clients are searching for a local lawyer, the legal office nearest to them with the most recent and positive reviews will often appear first in organic search results. This is because Google’s algorithm tends to favor its own internal reviews platform when ranking search results. The reviews you earn on Google carry more weight in Google search than those you earn on other platforms, like Yelp.
If you focus on building the number of reviews you have online, you’ll have a leg up against the competition in organic results, allowing more clients to find your services. You’ll also ensure that people who find your firm, also see your reputation for excellence. This sends a powerful message that you are the best in your legal specialty in your geographic area.
03. Online Reviews Are Just As Important as Word-of-Mouth Referrals
Law firms often depend on word-of-mouth referrals. But online reviews can also play a powerful role in bringing new clients to your firm. In fact, more than 80% of customers trust online reviewsi as much as they trust recommendations from family and friends. Also, 90% of consumers say that online reviews impact their purchasing decisions—including who they hire to represent them in court. If you focus on building the number of reviews you have online, you’ll have a leg up against the competition in organic results, allowing more clients to find your services. You’ll also ensure that people who find your firm, also see your reputation for excellence. This sends a powerful message that you are the best in your legal specialty in your geographic area.
If your law firm is well-regarded in the community, focus on moving some of those in-person referrals online. Loyal clients will gladly leave a Google review if you ask. Especially if you make it easy for them with a text-based review platform like Podium. Make sure to ask clients for reviews promptly, right when you conclude your work for them and the experience is fresh in their mind. Consider automating the reviews process so it takes less of your staff’s time to request reviews and makes it super easy for clients to leave them. You can do this through templated text messages. When it comes to leaving a compelling review, The more details you can get, the better. Suggest that clients mention specific things they liked about your services, not just a simple star rating. Reviews are as Important as Word-of-Mouth Referrals
Reviews Lead to More Reviews
When you earn online reviews that clients can see, you’re more likely to gain even more reviews. This is because your existing reviews may spark a positive memory or even inspire emotion as clients read them. This encourages past clients to get involved in the conversation and voice their own opinion. You may be surprised how willing the public is to get involved and recommend a service provider that they feel has truly helped them.
Earning reviews also gives you the possibility to respond to your client’s questions, concerns, and feedback. If a client sees that you value reviews and take the time to read them and engage, they will be more likely to leave a review of their own.
Not all your reviews will be positive, and that’s okay. Even if you feel a review of your services is unfair, leave a thoughtful response and offer to remedy the situation in any way you can. The negative reviewer may even change their mind and edit their review. By showing that you care, you can instill trust and possibly earn a repeat client.