Enjoy a quick sketch of the top 5 Buffalo law firm websites online and the cracks in their strategies. Here we go:
I’m sure you’ve heard of this firm, Cellino and Barnes. They’re also number 1 in NYC, which takes a ton of work and a huge budget, but it’s worth it, because they are certainly getting the lion’s share of leads from organic search.
The homepage has 4,665 links coming from 214 referring domains.
That referring domain number is pretty low for a site with this many backlinks, so I dug a little deeper and found they have 1002 links coming from an indoor soccer website (http://rochesterlancers.com/), and 590 from the same site on a different domain (http://rlancers.com/). Hmmm? Not sure how this is relevant to law, or why a soccer team would link to a PI firm almost 1700 times, but the reports don’t lie.
I’m not saying this firm is easy to outrank – they’re not – I have a firm in the number 2 spot for “car accident lawyer NYC”, and it’s very hard to jump into the top spot where Cellino and Barnes is for this phrase.
Kustell in the second position is very interesting for two reasons:
1. Google pulled an internal page, when it usually pulls the homepage for the phrase “personal injury lawyer”
2. their authority ratings are very low. (PA: 16 and DA: 19)
So, why are they in the second position for this competitive phrase? They’re doing two things right:
1. they have relevant backlinks, (they’re all on internal pages, which is NOT ideal, but they have a few that are linked to from the homepages of these sites – helps a little)
2. they have all of their social media in place and active
Little info to help you understand the analysis:
A “backlink” is when another website links to yours. Every link counts as a vote in the eyes of Google, so sites with a healthy backlink profile dominate their market online.
Note: not all backinks are equal. Backlinks need to be relevant and authoritative. A website with 10 great backlinks can outrank a website with 500 average backlinks.
I chose Buffalo personal injury law firm websites for my analysis, but a backlink analysis is the same for criminal law, family law…any law specialty.
Websites with clean SEO and quality backlinks win online, always.
page authority: 26
domain authority: 14
28 backlinks coming from 16 referring domains.
These are very low numbers, as you can see by comparing to Cellino and Barnes, however, they’re backlink profile is VERY natural looking. They do not have hundreds of links coming from non-law related sites, they do not have any spammy links coming from ‘link farms’, and they do not have any blackhat paid links.
Nice work guys. See it doesn’t take 1000s of links to get into the top 10. It just has to be done the right way.
I also noticed that they have their social media profiles in order, and although they’re not publishing tons of content, it’s enough to show Google that they’re a real brand and a firm deserving top 10 placement.
Note: I searched construction accident lawyer Buffalo and and car accident lawyer Buffalo, and I did not see Steve Boyd on the first page for either of these.
He needs a tighter link funnel and a few well-placed links from homepages of relevant sites like a construction or auto blog.
This site has some page loading time issues. It took longer than 5 seconds to load the homepage, and Google takes this into account when ranking sites.
891 backlinks coming from 36 referring domains.
Their backlinks look pretty clean. 730 out of their 891 links are coming from this blog: http://healthandfitnesslawreports.com/ and this would be pretty powerful if the homepage had a higher page rank, but it’s only a DA: 11 (out of 100)
All of their other backlinks look natural and relevant, and their anchor text ratio is very good – sometimes this is all you need to get your site up in the top 10, but someone can easily come along and knock them out of the box. All it would take is a web optimized website with good original content and a handful of quality backlinks from the homepages of law related sites.
It’s strange to see a site like this in the top 10, because it has such low authority scores and only a few backlinks, but I guess that’s the market in Buffalo. It makes me wonder why other attorneys haven’t taken advantage of this opening in Google. It’s a big one.
Hope you enjoyed the analysis. Feel free to call me if you have questions. 212-960-8584
Tom Desmond – Co-Founder of ApricotLaw