Never heard of Google Alerts, or have you just never signed up? Believe it or not, the popular tool offered to any Google user (at no cost, I might add) can work wonders for your law firm’s SEO.
Of course, it doesn’t affect your SEO directly, but it can be a huge indirect help by letting you keep track of how well your business is doing SEO-wise.
You can set up Google Alerts for any search terms you could type into the regular Google search bar!
Sounds great… but what does a Google Alert actually do?
When you’ve set up a Google Alert for a given search term or phrase, Google will let you know (“alert” you, hence the name) whenever the SERP for that term or phrase changes. You can use this as a great big-picture way of looking at how well your law firm is performing for a variety of keywords.
For example, you want to make sure you stay at the very top of a SERP for your business name. You’ll also want to make sure you get close to the top of the SERP for “lawyer in [your town]” or a similar search phrase.
They’re useful whether you’re just starting out with SEO or you’re already at the top of the SERPs. If you’re just starting out, you can check every week or so to see if the SEO work you or your marketers are doing is having any effect on your SERP ranking. If you’re already on top, you can use Google Alerts to make sure you stay there.
How do I set up a Google Alert?
If you go to the official Google Alert page (we linked to it at the beginning of the article for your convenience), there are instructions to set up there. I also found a very helpful article earlier that gives you all the steps in great detail.
What search terms and phrases should I set up Google Alerts for?
You should set up Google Alerts for any SEO keywords or search phrases you want to appear in the SERPs for. However, it can be a bit overwhelming to get a lot of Google Alerts at once, so you might want to only set up Alerts for the most important phrases and keywords first, so that you can get used to managing all the extra information you’ll have pouring in.
You can also choose how often you get Alerts. It might be safe to get Alerts for stable or unimportant search terms or phrases once a week, but for very competitive keywords you’ll want to be updated once per day at least.
You can set the Alert to notify you as soon as something changes in the SERP as well. This is highly recommended for search terms that are both important to your firm and highly or moderately competitive.