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Online Legal Marketing Tip: Traffic Sources Matter
When lawyers start a campaign of
The problem is that Google isn’t going to give you the best bang for your buck.
To explain, let me ask you a simple question: Would you rather have 10 new consultation appointments and get one new client out of it, or would you rather have 3 new consultation appointments and get one new client out of it?
Unless you’ve got serious math problems, you probably want the latter – 3 new appointments, 1 new client. Why waste your time with the other 7 people would don’t have much use for you anyway?
In fact, Google doesn’t give you the best visitors. I didn’t believe this until I happened across this post at Search Engine Watch. In the article, the author discusses how Google may give more traffic overall, but it isn’t the right traffic. Visitors from Google stick around less, read fewer pages on his site, and generally have a lower level of engagement.
The best traffic on his site came from forums in which he is a participant, social media sites such as Twitter, and other blogs. Google was way down in his list.
Interested, I took a peek at the stats on my sites – including some with extremely high traffic levels. If the theory was correct, it would bear out over all of my sites to one extent or another.
If Your Online legal practice marketing Relies Solely On Traffic From Search Engines, You’re Missing The Boat.
My findings were clear, and truthful across the board. Large sites and small reflected the exact same information. The traffic I get from search engines (Google. Bing, Yahoo, Ask, etc.) yield visitors who stay less time, are less likely to contact me or opt into my mailing list, and view fewer pages than other sites.
The best sources of traffic? Facebook, Twitter, forums in which I actively participate, and other blogs. Hands down.
This makes sense if you take a step back. People who find you on search engines have a specific question or problem, and come to you for an answer. Once the answer is uncovered, they’re happy and off the site. Some may stick around for more information, others to contact you or opt in – but for the most part, it’s game over.
The social media visitors (blogs, forums, Facebook, Twitter and the like) are more likely to be people who have been exposed to you for awhile in one form or another. Twitter and Facebook visitors are your followers, and have come to trust your judgment and opinions. Blog visitors are readers of the referring site, and so when a recommendation is made in the form of an outbound link it carries a bit of trust as well. And on forums, if you’re actively participating then people know you as well.
When these folks visit, they are more likely to become (or refer others to become) paying clients in the long-run.
For a good look into why social media traffic is so compelling, check out Adrian Dayton’s take on the matter. You’ll also see my comment there, which says that, “They [social media clicks] are different clicks [from SEO or PPC clicks], neither better nor worse.” I stand by that comment, and think it’s important o bear in mind that I am not saying to abandon the search engines. Doing so would be commercially unwise.
What I am saying, however, is that by looking at social media and other sources for your traffic, you’ll begin the process of attracting some high-quality visitors to your site rather than simply looking to quantity.