SEO vs. PPC: Which Is Better for a Law Firm?

Grow Law Firm
8 min readApr 19, 2024


When discussing the most powerful law firm digital marketing tools, SEO marketing, and PPC campaigns are the consensus picks. However, there is plenty of debate as to which option is best for law firms. Many law firms are fiercely devoted to their search engine optimization efforts, whereas others prefer to leverage paid search.

With that in mind, we have created this definitive guide to SEO vs. PPC comparison. This head-to-head comparison explores SEO and PPC marketing strategies, their benefits, and potential drawbacks. We also examine whether your law firm should choose one methodology over the other or attempt to implement both SEO strategy and PPC advertising.

What Is Law Firm SEO

SEO (search engine optimization) is an essential component of online marketing for lawyers. Search engine marketing works by optimizing web pages so that search engines can find, understand, and index them efficiently, thus allowing your website to rank higher in the search engine results pages (SERPs).

How does SEO work
How does SEO work

SEO efforts involve optimizing titles, descriptions, keywords, and other website or web page elements. There are different search engine marketing techniques, and we will discuss 4 of them in this article. Properly implementing these SEO types can lead to your law firm online growth, increased traffic and visibility.

Learn more about SEO for Lawyers in our guide!

The 4 main parts of lawyer SEO strategy are:

  • on-page SEO
  • off-page SEO
  • keyword research
  • technical SEO

On-Page SEO

on page SEO
What is on page SEO

On-page SEO refers to all the measures taken directly within the website to improve its position in organic search results. This includes page titles, headings, content, and internal linking.

Off-Page SEO

off page SEO
What is off page SEO

Off-page SEO refers to activities outside of the website that can boost its position on the Google search results, such as link building and social media engagement.

Keyword Research

Child custody agreement without court keyword
Child custody agreement without court keyword

Keyword research involves the discovery, selection, and use of words and phrases relevant to your website’s topic or content and helpful for search engine optimization. This includes researching popular and relevant keywords, analyzing competitors’ strategies, and understanding how search engines rank web pages.

Technical SEO

technical SEO
What is technical SEO

Technical SEO ensures that all aspects of your website are optimized for search engines. This includes making your website mobile-friendly, adding meta tags, optimizing images, and improving page load times.

It also focuses on improving the structure of a website to make it easier to crawl and index it accurately by creating an XML sitemap and fixing broken links.

What Is PPC for Lawyers

How does PPC work
How does PPC work

Pay-per-click (PPC) for lawyers is an online advertising model to direct website traffic. It works by placing ads on search engine results pages and other websites and charging you a fee each time someone clicks on the ad. As with SEO marketing strategy, several types of PPC ads campaign strategies can be used to generate leads and boost sales for any business.

Learn more about PPC for lawyers in our guide!

4 main components of an attorney PPC strategy are:

  • keyword reserach
  • bid settings
  • ad creation
  • audience targeting

Keyword Research

Yes, it’s also a part of your PPC campaign as well. PPC keyword research for lawyers involves finding the most relevant and popular terms that potential clients are likely to use when searching for services related to your law firm to create targeted ads.

Bid Setting

Bid setting involves choosing how much you are willing to pay each time someone clicks on your Google Ads. Simply set an average PPC cost, and the Google Ads system will automatically manage your bids to get you as many clicks as possible for that price.

Ad Creation

Ad creation requires crafting compelling copy, designing eye-catching visuals, and creating interesting videos for your advertisement to highlight the services you offer.

Audience Targeting

Audience targeting involves tailoring your messages to certain demographics that are likely to be interested in your services. It can be based on factors such as age, location, interests, etc.

SEO vs. PPC for Lawyers: Pros and Cons

SEO and PPC are both integral components of an effective marketing strategy. In certain stages of a law firm’s life cycle, PPC advertising will be the better option. Law firms should also focus on organic SEO strategy to generate traffic, build their brand images, and acquire new clients.

When it comes to attorney SEO vs. PPC, there is no one-size-fits-all answer. Both have their own unique advantages and disadvantages. It’s important to consider these as well as your SEO vs. PPC marketing budget, goals, and audience when deciding which strategy is right for you.

SEO Pros

  • It can be a great way to increase organic traffic to your website
  • It can give your website an overall boost in visibility
  • It’s also relatively low-cost and can be implemented without much technical knowledge
  • It can help build credibility and trust with customers, as it shows that a website is reputable and has valuable content

SEO Cons

  • It can be slow to see results and can take from 3 to 6 months before you start to see a return on your investment
  • It can be difficult to measure the return on investment

PPC Pros

  • It helps target specific audiences and tailor your campaigns to reach people who are more likely to be interested in your products or services
  • A PPC ad is a faster way to get your website to the top of SERPs, meaning you will see results almost immediately
  • It is much easier to measure in terms of return on investment, as you can track the number of clicks and conversions you get from your ads

PPC Cons

  • Search ads can become expensive for law firms if they are not monitoring their campaigns carefully
  • Pay per click advertising requires continual payments in order to keep up with the competition

What Is a Better Option for Attorneys

As an attorney, you understand the importance of effective online marketing as well as building a successful online presence. You know that your potential clients are likely to have questions and need help quickly. The best way to reach them is through organic search engine optimization (SEO) and paid search engine marketing (PPC). How can SEO and PPC work together for the law firm? Let’s take a closer look at SEO versus PPC digital strategy and compare the two in terms of cost, return on investment, and effectiveness.

Law Firm SEO is a better option when:

  • You need a cost-effective option for your law firm.
  • You are looking for long-term success.
  • You want to create compelling content reaching potential clients searching for legal advice or services.
  • You want to improve your attorney website’s visibility to build your brand identity.

A PPC campaign is a better option when:

  • You want immediate visibility and quick lead generation, though it may require a larer marketing budget.
  • You want to target specific demographics and markets with tailored adverts to attract the right kind of attention.
  • You are advertising an offer that expires soon, such as a webinar, e-book sales, or a consultation discount.
  • You need a better way to track the results of the campaigns and make adjustments as needed.

How Is ROI Different for Lawyer PPC vs. SEO?

Return on Investment (ROI) is a key metric that businesses use to measure the success of their advertising efforts. It is especially important for lawyers, who often have tight budgets and need to know what results they are getting from their marketing dollars. The ROI for lawyer PPC vs. SEO campaigns can be vastly different.

When you look at most industries, SEO has a higher conversion rate. The legal industry is no different as SEO conversion is 3x higher than PPC. This is because SEO requires more time and effort in order to rank highly in search engine results, so the returns are typically higher. PPC campaigns have a relatively low barrier to entry and can generate quick leads, although they may not be as cost-effective in the long run.

For the Best Result Use Both SEO and PPC

You’ve probably already concluded that organic SEO and PPC can benefit your digital marketing strategy. To maximize your marketing efforts, you can incorporate them. Some potential outcomes when you combine them both are listed below.

  1. With SEO, you can build a strong foundation of organic search traffic on a search engine results page, while PPC ads can help to increase visibility and drive qualified traffic to your law firm’s website quickly.
  2. By leveraging both, you can get the benefits of long-term organic search engine rankings while also receiving the quick and targeted results of PPC campaigns.
  3. You can use both to measure and track your progress so that you can adjust your strategy accordingly with the data compiled.
  4. Consider remarketing advertisements, which lets you tailor your messaging to appeal to visitors who have already engaged with your website to return and take action.
  5. Having high organic results and paid visibility can raise brand awareness and increase credibility.

Expand Your Presence Online with Legal Marketing Services

SEO campaigns and PPC marketing can be quite helpful strategies to increase the quality of the traffic to your website. However, you will need trial and error to understand how to use these digital marketing strategies and which one works best. You can also opt for the PPC and SEO services of digital marketing experts like Grow Law Firm to help ease the work.

Grow Law Firm offers law firms both SEO and PPC services that can help you expand your presence online, so you can reach a broader audience and increase your client base. The decision on whether to do your SEO and PPC management yourself or with the help of a professional depends on your resources. Contact us today!



Grow Law Firm

Grow Law Firm is a law firm marketing agency that provides digital marketing services for lawyers. We specialize in SEO, PPC, and Website Design for law firms.