How Google’s Penguin Update Effects Attorneys
I heard backlinks to my website are no longer useful and can even hurt SEO, is that true? The question of backlinks has become a bigger issue now that Google continually releases updates commonly referred to as Penguin that assesses backlinks as a means to measure website’s credibility and popularity.
For years backlinks were a major ranking factor, but were abused and manipulated. Google’s Penguin updates are designed to identify irrelevant spammy backlinks that minimize their impact or in some abusive cases even penalizes the website. In the end backlinks will continue to be an important ranking factor, however the focus will no longer be on the quantity of backlinks but more on the quality of them. I would even go so far as to say that the value of a quality link has even increased with these Google Penguin updates.
Quality Backlinks for Lawyers
So what are quality backlinks? These are links that come from relevant, legal or even market specific websites and directories. Websites that have a strong audience and authority and credibility. High quality backlinks are also those that actually drive visitors to your website. Relevant links that are great, but when they actually work, they’re even better. Quality backlinks are also earned. When other websites recognize quality content and resources on your site and choose to share them with their visitors and associates with you, those are valuable loads of confidence and Google will reward you.
Other strategies to attract quality links include identifying all relevant online resources that are connected to your attorneys and your law firm. Links from things like universities, associations, organizations, civic groups, charities that you contribute to can all provide quality signals to Google. We even have some firms that have their own scholarship funds through these sources and leverage the links from those site. Bottom line, backlinking has become a lot more strategic and requires the firm to participate at some level. Gone are the days of simply buying lots of backlinks for SEO purposes.