Google reviews are a critical factor in your law firm’s visibility online. While there are various SEO benefits of online reviews, they also help build your firm’s credibility. Many potential clients want to see what others are saying about your firm before they contact you for legal help.
There is plenty of research showing a huge percentage of consumers look at online reviews before deciding things. In fact, consumers trust reviews as much as, if not more than, recommendations from family members or friends.
At PMP, we have a detailed understanding of the importance of Google reviews. We know how to help law firms obtain more reviews and how to respond to negative reviews. Our experienced team has developed proven best practices while helping many law firms with this critical aspect of their online presence.
What Are the Benefits of Google Reviews for Law Firms?
Google reviews help to market your firm to potential clients. People can learn about the experience others have had with your firm. If they hear about positive experiences and expertise with cases, people are more likely to think you are qualified to handle their case.
There are also many SEO benefits to Google reviews. For example, these reviews build your credibility with Google. Firms with a lot of reviews, including a lot of positive reviews, are more likely to show up higher in local search results and in map search results. Getting more reviews also helps to optimize your listing in Google My Business.
The number of reviews and the ratings you receive will also impact your law firm’s position in Local Service Ads, which appear above paid search ads.
How Do You Get More Reviews of Your Law Firm?
There are many simple strategies that will help to generate more reviews, such as building your firm’s credibility and improving your website’s SEO.
Ask for Reviews When Cases Conclude
If you wait to ask clients for feedback, they may forget important details about their experience with your firm. They might even be less likely to leave a review. That is why you should send clients a follow-up email that includes a link to your Google Business page. This makes it easy for clients to quickly post a review.
You may also want to include some questions in the email to help your clients think about what to say. For example:
- How was your experience with our law firm?
- Did you get the results you were looking for?
- Would you recommend our firm to others in need of legal services?
Integrate Gathering of Reviews Into Your Website
You can integrate review gathering into your website, which makes it extremely easy for visitors to your website to quickly leave a review. PMP helps clients add this functionality to their websites, as we have seen how important Google reviews are for law firms.
Reach Out to Past Clients
While some past clients might not leave a review, others might. You could start an email campaign to seek out more reviews. You could even reach out to past clients on social media. Past clients, particularly those who received significant compensation, may be more likely to leave a positive review.
Another way to reach past clients is to contact those who left reviews of your firm on other websites or review platforms.
How to Reply to Google Reviews
Another important aspect of getting more Google reviews is responding to the positive reviews you receive. Others who are looking at your reviews will see that you responded. This leaves the impression that your firm is friendly, professional and cares about clients.
Responding to reviews also makes the reviewer feel valued, which means they may be more likely to recommend your firm to others. If someone asks the client about your firm, the client is more likely to say something positive about you.
Keep your responses short and to the point. Thank the reviewer for what they said and tell them you are happy about the result of the case.
Handling Negative Reviews
From time to time, your firm is likely going to receive negative reviews. When these reviews come in, it is important that you respond appropriately.
Tell the reviewer you take their complaints seriously, and if possible, address the specific complaints in your response. You could also ask the reviewer to contact you so you can discuss their comments. A short conversation may allow you to clear up any misunderstandings, and sometimes the reviewer might even take the review down.
Responding to negative comments helps to show others looking at your firm’s Google reviews that you are invested in responding to the concerns of your clients.
It is important to note Google will remove some negative reviews, such as reviews from people who have never had any contact with your firm, or reviews from past or current employees of your firm. Google will also remove a series of negative reviews from the same person. You can flag reviews as inappropriate if they violate Google guidelines. This is why it is important to investigate negative reviews to see if they are legitimate.