Pay-per-click advertising for lawyers: Step up your campaigns with this guide!

✔️ Technically Reviewed And Approved By Nomadic Team

Written By Jason Donegan, a seasoned and published writer on several websites. For many years Jason was also a radio producer and researcher, and it's this "leave no stone unturned" methodology that Jason now brings to all his writing - believing that deep analysis is key to a strong article. When he's not brushing up on the latest Digital Marketing news or feeding his entrepreneurial side, Jason loves to solo travel, geek out on SEO trends and get some exercise in with long walks

April 11, 2024

Imagine walking into a courtroom unprepared, with a weak opening statement and flimsy evidence. You might make some points, but your case isn’t likely to win.

That’s similar to launching a PPC campaign for lawyers without a solid strategy – there’s potential, but you probably won’t see the qualified leads you desire.

Pay-per-click advertising is a powerful tool for law firms, but it takes more than just a budget. Understanding your ideal client and crafting ads that speak to their needs is essential for a compelling case.

Let’s equip you with the knowledge needed to win through PPC for lawyers. In this guide, we’ll cover the fundamentals of PPC, explore strategies to identify the relevant keywords, and how to effectively reach your target audience.


What is PPC advertising for lawyers?

PPC ads are like a digital handshake from lawyers to potential clients, reaching out to people searching for assistance. They are a specific type of ads that are added at the top of the organic search results on Google’s top pages.

And the best part?

You only pay when someone’s interested enough to click, making sure your message finds the right potential clients. It’s a direct, budget-friendly way to say, “Hi, we’re here to help,” when people need you the most.

What you should know before creating law firm ads


Launching a PPC campaign can be exciting, but there’s important groundwork to lay before you start spending on ads.

Understanding these key points will make a huge difference in reaching the right prospective clients, increasing conversion rates, and maximizing your return on investment from online advertising.

Remember: Even the best-written ads won’t reach their full potential without a clear digital marketing strategy.

Are you targeting keywords relevant to your legal services? Are you tracking those all-important click-through rates to gauge the success of your campaigns and inform future marketing efforts?

Let’s make those first ads count!

Here are some crucial tips to ensure your law firm sees positive results from its online advertising efforts.

Finding legal niches

Identifying the Niche:

The first step involves strategic planning to evaluate the firm’s strengths and market needs. This could mean focusing on family law, criminal defense, or estate planning based on the firm’s expertise and client demand.

Research and Analysis:

1 – Use analytics tools to assess demand in competitive markets.

2 – Understanding market trends and client needs is vital. The free Google Trends and the paid Exploding Topics site can be helpful here.

For example: with Google Trends here we see “Lawyer near me” is showing an upward trajectory worldwide.


Specialization and Expertise:

Niche-ing down allows firms to build deep expertise, enhancing their ability to serve clients effectively and efficiently. This specialization can lead to a better return on investment by attracting qualified leads who are more likely to convert into clients.

So it pays to explore growing niches and search terms like cryptocurrency, cybersecurity, or environmental law.

These evolving areas offer growth potential as the legal framework is constantly changing.


Silver Miller Law seems to have a huge part of the cryptocurrency fraud market to themselves – which is evident in their media appearances and the big names they’ve taken on:


Play to Your Passion and Strengths:

To really hone in on your target market it’s important to ask yourself early on: What areas of the law do I really love?”

The best criminal defense lawyers eat and sleep that particular sub-niche. And to be a strong divorce lawyer it helps to have natural empathy with people.

There’s a wide range of law sub-niches and, as you know, the industry is tough with long hours and late nights. So choose one that makes you look forward to going into the office every day – your clients will see and appreciate your enthusiasm.

Top Tip:

If your plate is already full with that busy day and helping new clients, consider enrolling the help of an experienced digital marketing agency to help you niche down.


Finding the right keywords for lawyers


In the competitive world of digital advertising, laser-focused keywords are the key to reaching potential clients who need your specific legal services.

If you’re a personal injury lawyer or you own a personal injury law firm, think like someone who’s just been hurt in an accident – what would they search for?

Phrases like “best car accident lawyer [your city]” are a good starting point.

Now let’s refine your strategy:

  • Free Tools Are a Start: Platforms like Google Keyword Planner offer basic insights and broad keywords for your initial search campaigns.
  • Paid Options = Power:

Paid software like Ahrefs goes deeper, showing search volume, long-tail keywords, exact match keywords, broad match keywords, average cost-per-click, competitor data, and more to bolster your keyword strategy and help make your search Ads shine.



Then there are other paid tools like Keyword Chef, which is great for brainstorming some ideas:


  • Don’t Waste Spend: Identify negative keywords to prevent irrelevant clicks that drain your budget.

Top Tip

Keywords take serious effort – they really are a science in themselves, but choosing the right ones directly impacts your successful campaigns and return on investment.

Consider outsourcing them to experienced management services who know how to get you ranking.

Other Key Details to Know Before Making Law Firm Ads

Here are other elements that need your attention:

  • Define Your Unique Selling Proposition (USP): What makes your firm stand out? It could be your notable track record in intellectual property disputes or specialized knowledge in environmental law.
  • Compliance and Ethics: Ensure your ads adhere to the ABA’s Model Rules of Professional Conduct.


For a bankruptcy law firm, this would mean being clear about the complexities of filing for bankruptcy without promising debt relief.

Here’s one important ABA rule that caught our eye:

  • Budget and ROI Considerations: Decide on a budget that aligns with your goals, such as expanding your clientele in the area of tax law or increasing visibility for your services in elder law.

Creating law firm advertising campaigns

Starting your digital marketing journey can truly transform your law firm’s ability to meet new clients and step up your campaign performance.

  • Picture the power of Facebook ads spreading your message far and wide.
  • Or Google ads placing you right in front of someone searching for legal help.

Google Local Service ads are like having a digital signboard that leads legal clients straight to your office. And with pay-per-lead, you’re only investing in clicks that count, ensuring every dollar goes towards engaging genuine interests.

Let’s look at these in more detail.

Facebook ads for lawyers

Can you believe just how big Facebook has gotten as a marketing platform?

For law firms, it’s a goldmine of potential clients. Facebook PPC and Facebook Ads are must-have tools for your online marketing efforts, forming key pieces of your overall digital marketing campaign.

Why Consider Facebook Ads?

You can target people in your area who may be interested in legal services. For example, reach those who:

  • Follow pages related to estate planning or family law.
  • Engage with content about business contracts or intellectual property.
  • Use keywords like “divorce lawyer” or “estate planning” in their Facebook posts or comments.

Crafting Effective Ads

There are two key elements we can use here:

Visuals: Capture attention with high-quality images, videos, or testimonials.


This Facebook video Q&A by this law company was a great idea:

And when it comes to copy, write clear, concise text that highlights your firm’s expertise and value.

Copy examples include:

  1. Estate Planning: “Protect your legacy. Schedule your estate planning appointment today.”
  2. Business Law: “Experienced contract negotiation. Get the legal support your business needs.”
  3. Family Law: “Compassionate guidance through divorce. Contact us for a free consultation.”

Or make it part of your overall content marketing by linking to a blog on your site, like this Facebook Ad did with: “What to know before hiring a Divorce lawyer”

In a nutshell:

When used strategically, targeted Facebook Ads are a powerful tool to drive leads and establish your law firm as a trusted authority in your field.

Google ads for lawyers

When it comes to marketing for law firms, specificity is key. And while Facebook might be a rising PPC star – the mighty Google has been doing this for 24 years now.

Let’s look at how targeted Google PPC ad campaigns can transform your practice:

Crafting PPC Ad Campaigns:

Family Law is a good example here:

Your PPC ads can target searches like “divorce attorney near me” or “child custody legal advice.” This form of advertising ensures your firm appears to those actively seeking your exact services, making every click a pathway to your expertise.

Optimizing Dedicated Landing Pages:

A dedicated landing page detailing your strengths can significantly increase your campaign’s conversion rates.

Here’s a good personal injury example:

Things to include are:

  • Success stories
  • Client testimonials
  • Free consultation offers

Generating High-Quality Leads:

Effective PPC strategies go beyond broad keywords.


If you’re a criminal defense attorney, targeting specific charges like “DUI defense lawyer” can attract clients with immediate, specific needs, ensuring the leads you generate are of high quality and relevance.


  • Pros: Global reach, customizable audience segments, and diverse ad placements across the web.
  • Cons: Costs can accumulate without guaranteeing lead conversion; requires constant optimization and budgeting to remain competitive.

Google local service ads for lawyers

Local Service Ads get focused on your community and can quickly put your law firm in front of potential clients searching for very specific terms like:

“urgent will creation services in [City Name].” or “immigration lawyer for fast visa assistance in [City Name]”

Pay Only for Results, Not Clicks

With local service ads (LSAs), you’ll never pay for curiosity clicks that don’t turn into consultations.

Your budget is directly tied to actual leads – i.e. phone calls and messages from clients who are ready to discuss their case. This helps lower your cost per acquisition.

Build Trust with the Google Screened Badge

This badge next to your LSA demonstrates that you’re a verified, reputable law firm. Potential clients know that Google has checked your credentials, boosting confidence and making them more likely to reach out.


  • Pros: Top placement on search results, enhanced trust through the Google Guarantee, and focus on the local service market.
  • Cons: Limited to certain zip codes, less control over ad placement and keyword targeting compared to broad Google Ads​.

Pay per lead for lawyers

Think of PPL as your ultra-focused approach to advertising.

Instead of throwing your budget into the vast ocean of the internet, hoping for any click, you spend your money to get in touch with people who have already shown interest in your type of legal services.

Let’s look at why PPL works better.

Direct Connection to Interested Clients:

PPL platforms screen out casual browsers. You’re not paying for every person who glances at your ad. You pay when someone actually steps forward saying, “I need a lawyer,” and provides their contact info.

This system ensures you’re reaching out to those who are more likely to need your services right now.

Custom Fit Your Audience:

With PPL, your ads are targeted. Say you specialize in family law, your ads and outreach will specifically target those searching for family law assistance.

The focus here is on attracting the attention of the right audience, not just any audience.


Every dollar you spend is used to connect you with potential clients who have expressed a direct interest in legal help. This means your marketing budget is more likely to return value, as you’re not spending on broad, un-targeted advertising.


  • Pros: You’re investing in leads who have a higher likelihood of becoming clients, which can more efficiently use your marketing dollars.
  • Cons: The cost for each lead can change based on demand and the specific area of law you practice.

Why it’s our favorite Google PPC method

PPL strips away the guesswork from law firm advertising. You get a clearer picture of who’s interested in your services and can tailor your efforts to meet these potential clients where they are.

Best law firm advertising examples

Let’s beam a spotlight on some more legal PPC examples we enjoyed:

1 – Morris Law

We mentioned earlier the importance of getting Google Screened as a lawyer, and Morris Law is showing this loud and proud here.

2 – Preszler Law

For the highly competitive keyword of “injury lawyer Toronto”, Preszler Law has paid its way to the top of page one on Google with an impressive Ad here.

Things we love:

  • Every client likes the promise of “No win, no fee”
  • They’ve humanized the Ad in the top right with a picture of their staff
  • “60 years of experience” is reassuring
  • The copy is emphatic with words like “help” and “you deserve”
  • And how cool is that phone number of 1800 JUSTICE?

3 – Employment Law Assist

We also mentioned earlier that niching right down can really benefit your law firm, and ELA is doing it very well here.

What we love:

  • It’s hyper-targeted, focusing on a sub-niche (caregivers) of a sub-niche (employment law)
  • Many caregivers are, rightly, proud of their job and will mention their profession in their “About Me” section on Facebook
  • This makes finding these potential customers very easy with a Facebook campaign
  • The warm image and the clear copy – with bullets for easy reading – are the icing on the cake here. A great job all round.

What we’d have changed/improved:

Our Facebook Advertising team would have asked this client to go one step further with a one or two-minute “A day in the life of a carer” video, showing the hard work carers put in daily.

This would build to the final 20 seconds of the video asking if the viewer has been unfairly dismissed recently and then close on a gentle sell at the end.

We believe with the strong targeting already in place, this video Ad would convert in huge numbers.


PPC advertising for law firms: final tips

Here’s a couple of parting thoughts and tips:

1 – Win Back Website Visitors:

Reclaim those who explored your legal services but didn’t convert by retargeting ads/remarketing Ads reminding them of your expertise.

2 – A/B Test Effective Landing Pages for Conversions:

Why settle for mediocre? Continuously test variations of your landing pages to optimize conversion rates for potential clients seeking legal help.

Looking for PPC services for lawyers?

Running a law firm is demanding. Between consultations, casework, and managing your team, who has time to become a search engine optimization ninja too?

At Nomadic Advertising, we speak fluent PPC. Let us handle the heavy lifting and optimize your campaigns to attract the right clients.

We’ll free you to focus on what you do best – providing exceptional legal service.

Ready to see your caseload flourish online? Schedule a free 30-minute consultation with our specialists today and let’s transform your PPC from an overruled objection into a favorable verdict.

Key takeaways

  • Craft a Winning Strategy: Approach PPC as you would a courtroom battle, with meticulous planning and a strategy designed to succeed.
  • Set the Foundation: Determine your niche, refine your keywords, highlight your firm’s uniqueness, and adhere to advertising ethics before launching campaigns.
  • Choose the Right Platforms: Select platforms like Google Ads, Facebook, and Local Service Ads for targeted outreach to potential clients – but know the differences between them all.
  • Leverage PPC for Growth: Use pay-per-click to increase your firm’s online presence and connect directly with clients seeking your expertise.





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