How long does SEO take?

When do seo efforts yield results? Illustrated with strategic chess moves and progress graph.

Starting a Law firm SEO campaign often leads to the question: 

“How long does it take to see results from SEO?” 

It’s a complex question with no straightforward answer as multiple variables come into play. 

However, before starting Lawyer SEO, it’s essential to assess your firm’s current online status, set measurable goals, and craft an effective strategy—a process that can span several months. 

On the other hand, strategies like PPC (Pay-Per-Click) advertising, content creation, and social media promotion can provide immediate results, creating a multi-channel approach.

But these strategies vary with many factors, so it’s better you understand the intricacies behind your investment first…

Understanding Law firm SEO Time Frame

Every SEO strategy is (and should be) tailored to your firm’s needs. Some factors may include website redesign, content that aligns with your client’s needs but also keeps up with algorithm updates, link building, and a smooth UX (user experience) on the site, among many other factors that influence overall search visibility.

While we could dive in and explain the hundreds of factors that come to play in SEO, it is clear to see there are a number of ranking factors that your law firm SEO agency needs to take into consideration.

That’s why it’s critical to remember that SEO is focused on long-term results

According to our SEO case study, the typical timeframe is 12 to 18 months for firms to start seeing significant results from their investment.

According to the same case study, on average, law firms investing with Consultwebs see a decrease of 56% in their cost per case metric and an increase of 266% in the total number of cases they sign up. Here’s the average data of over 100 law firms working with Consultwebs and what they experience over the first 13 months in what it costs them to generate a case from marketing:  

How avg. Cpc and avg. Cases relate graph

As shown in the picture above, typically, firms investing in Consultwebs witness a more than threefold increase in their cases after 13 months, with some achieving even higher conversion rates. 

To have a deeper understanding of this timeline, here are some of the factors that can affect your firm’s SEO results:

  • Your current marketing efforts and brand.
  • The level of competition.
  • Your website’s status and strength.

These elements play pivotal roles in determining how quickly you can expect results. 

So, to help you better understand what happens behind your SEO investment, let’s delve into the specific factors and activities involved in establishing a robust SEO foundation and the time each may require.

Let’s start with content creation…

How Long Should a Law Firm Blog Post Be for SEO Purposes?

There isn’t a magic number when it comes to the ideal length of a blog post. Instead, the focus should be on aligning with the quality raters’ guidelines and delivering content that caters to the specific needs of your audience. 

Remember, quality is often subjective.

What is informative and precise for one reader may be perceived as too basic for another.

However, quality content generally has a few hallmarks:

  • It answers the questions that visitors have.
  • It educates them on a particular subject.
  • It’s engaging enough that the reader finds it share-worthy.

It’s not just about stringing words together; it’s about weaving in value. Quality trumps quantity every time. 

For law firms, leveraging unique expertise is crucial. To truly stand out, consider:

  • Narrating from your experience in law: Your journey, challenges, and successes in the legal field can provide unparalleled insights.
  • Leveraging existing data: Showcase information or statistics that only you have access to. This not only reinforces your credibility but also ensures that your content is one-of-a-kind.

In conclusion, it’s less about word count and more about word impact. 

The Impact of Competition and Location

The location of your firm and the level of SEO competition within your target market are significant factors affecting your SEO timeline. 

Gaining traction in less densely populated areas can be quicker due to lower competition than in crowded areas such as Manhattan, where online competition for search terms is exceptionally high.

Organic search competition is significantly tougher in downtown New York and similar metro areas than in smaller cities or towns. Increased competition and larger online marketing investments in these areas make it harder for a firm to achieve visibility and high rankings.

Domain Age and Its Influence

Your web address’s age contributes a minor advantage to your SEO campaign. That is especially the case if it’s been optimized by professionals and thus, making it more accessible to search engines and users (AKA your prospects and clients). 

However, a brand-new firm with a new URL starts from ground zero, which means it still needs to be optimized with: 

  • Domain authority-building strategy
  • Established backlinks 
  • Citations 
  • SEO value 

In the scenario that SEO starts from scratch, it will require more time and investment before organic search results start appearing.

The Power of a Local Business Audit

A local business audit is an in-depth evaluation of your firm’s local profile that is critical in an SEO campaign. 

Consistent display of your firm’s Name, Address, and Phone number (NAP) across reputable online directories enhances your firm’s online visibility. This NAP consistency signals search engines about your firm’s credibility, making them more likely to rank your firm higher in search results.

The first step in enhancing your local profile is conducting an exhaustive search for your firm’s current citations. This process includes vital factors such as the following: 

Should you clean your legal citations?

At Consultwebs, we perform a local business audit at the start of each new client campaign we launch.

Citation Cleanup: A Necessary Step

Post-audit is the process of cleaning up your citations. It’s a task that can be labor-intensive and time-consuming. 

This process entails the following: 

  1. Updating information on some listings
  2. Claiming unclaimed listings
  3. Merging or removing duplicate listings
  4. Correcting incorrect citations

Potential Roadblocks in Citation Cleanup

Certain challenges can complicate the cleanup process. You might encounter issues such as:

  • Former firm names 
  • Outdated locations
  • Inaccurately listed attorneys 
  • Missing login details.

If these issues arise, the cleanup could span several months and require an extended time commitment..

Engaging Data Aggregators in Your SEO Journey

While cleaning up your citations, you should claim and submit information to key data aggregators. These platforms distribute your data to numerous websites. 

However, this process is time-consuming, with updates taking a couple of weeks to more than a year. Consequently, outdated or incorrect listings may persist, over which you have limited control. If this happens, you might have to start from scratch with a new local business audit. This is where and why having your SEO managed by professionals is key. 

Performing a Content Audit

The digital arena for legal services is fiercely competitive; that’s why you must perform a content audit to analyze your firm’s content effectiveness. 

This detailed examination reviews every page and blog post on your site. If you’re working with a law firm SEO agency, they should begin your campaign with a campaign analysis which may include factors like content audits.

Content audits help identify which parts of your site should remain, require updating, need removal, and also highlight gaps that need to be filled.

The audit takes into consideration items like page traffic, word count, technical aspects, and more. Each page’s purpose and user experience are determined by delving into this data. A campaign analysis will vary from firm to firm as there are different variables involved e.g. your site’s size. 

Enhancing Existing Content and Creating New Campaigns

A few years ago, writing a 300-500 word page with a targeted phrase was enough for ranking. But today, it’s more about offering an excellent user experience. 

Does your page answer visitors’ questions authoritatively and earn Google’s trust?

At Consultwebs…

  • We brainstormed changes for specific pages.
  • If we find information gaps, pages are rewritten. 
  • Introduce design elements to boost user engagement. 

A/B Testing for Insightful Results

A/B testing allows you to compare two similar pages, each with a unique difference. It offers valuable insights for improving your pages and increasing business conversion from your site. 

A proper A/B test involves creating a page and a variation of it, then driving sufficient traffic to collect meaningful data. Even if testing takes a few months, a mere 1% increase in conversion rate can translate into a significant number of additional leads over time.

The Value of Technical Audits

A comprehensive technical audit forms the backbone of a successful SEO campaign. It scrutinizes aspects of your website, including page speed, optimization, and business information. Through this labor-intensive process, your firm can address and discover ‘blind spots’ and ultimately,  drastically improve your website’s technical health.

The Importance of Link Earning

Creating quality content for your website takes time and effort.  More extensive projects, like website creative assets, can take even longer as it involves several team members, coding, developing, designing, and an intense outreach strategy for link building which is also time-consuming. 

For optimal results, this strategy needs to be maintained monthly. Constructing a robust link profile is vital for your website’s ranking for driving traffic and potential customer demand.

Boosting Your Case Acquisition Beyond SEO  

Achieving organic search results requires considerable time and effort. 

To bolster your initial investment in an organic search marketing campaign, we highly recommend incorporating other online marketing assets, including but not limited to:

Pay Per Click (PPC)

PPC displays your ad in search result listings, charging you a fee each time your ad gets clicked. It provides immediate traffic that generates leads and supplies data for improving your website.

Social Media Promotions

Promoting content on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, or Instagram can also drive additional traffic to your site. Such platforms offer great segmentation options, and you can gain substantial exposure with creativity.

While SEO is a cornerstone of digital marketing for law firms, it’s essential to understand that SEO is just one piece of the digital marketing puzzle. 

For quicker results and to capitalize on a broader range of online opportunities, law firms should also consider PPC and social media campaigns. Together, these channels can offer immediate visibility, foster engagement, and drive targeted traffic to your services. 

Pay Per Click (PPC) for Law Firms 

PPC advertising is a great complementary asset to SEO, it offers law firms the chance to see amazing results quickly. Unlike SEO, which requires time to climb the search rankings, and when PPC is managed by a team of experts the results pay off. 

With Consultwebs you can: 

  • Harness the power of precise keywords
  • Connect directly with your desired audience
  • Craft a compelling and clear ad message
  • Efficiently have your budget allocated where data suggests
  • Re-engage potential clients through retargeting strategies and more

And there is proof of success: 

With the help of Consultwebs, this personal injury boasts an impressive annual increase of 28.44% in leads and concurrently witnesses a consistent annual reduction of 15.84% in its cost per lead.

Law firm annual increase of 28. 44% in leads

Social Media for Law Firms 

Likewise, social media is key and it goes beyond aesthetics. 

The reality is that the majority of your potential clients are active on social media platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter,  Instagram, etc. 

Entrusting your law firm’s social media to a team of experts ensures accuracy, efficacy, and engagement. By partnering with Consultwebs, law firms can anticipate:

  • Complete security and confirmation of your firm’s social media accounts
  • Strategic use of paid promotions
  • Thorough verification of all provided data
  • Tailored content creation
  • Bridging the gap between your firm and potential high-quality clients, among other benefits and more 

Check out the case of a personal injury law firm that is well above the industry average and has averaged an 8.5% engagement rate over 2 years. 

Case study personal injury consultwebs client

Explore More Legal Digital Assets Here 


It takes time and a solid effort to see results in SEO. Moreover, investing in an SEO agency for law firms will give you the edge in getting the proper planning and execution to achieve your goals.

If you’re looking for a law firm SEO agency to ask questions about growing your firm, don’t hesitate to contact us

Or, if you want to learn more about what you can expect with our agency, click here:

‘The Consultwebs Customer Journey’