9 min read
Updated: August 28, 2022

How to Measure ROI on SEO for Law Firms

Because search engine optimization is a long-term investment, it is sometimes challenging to measure positive ROI. This is mostly because SEO initiatives don't have fixed costs, so marketers can't attribute investment to a specific time, as they do with pay-per-click.

Therefore, calculating SEO ROI is similar to calculating any other business investment. To measure SEO efforts successfully, you need to have specific goals. For example, an objective cannot simply be “increase conversions” it has to be “increase conversions by 40%”.

Let's take a look at common SEO strategies to measure your web pages' SEO ROI.

SEO Benchmarks

Start by establishing the right benchmarks (preferably before your SEO agency implements SEO). There are many digital marketing goals you can achieve with an SEO strategy, such as receiving higher organic search traffic, improving brand awareness, customer acquisition and actual revenue.

Whether you’re executing your SEO campaign internally, or outsourcing SEO services, the benchmarks below will help you evaluate success.

  • Traffic: The amount of website visitors you receive on a monthly basis.
  • Visitor-to-lead conversion rate: The percentage of visitors who come to your website and are captured as leads. This metric is an indicator of your ability to attract the right organic traffic.
  • Lead-to-client-close rate: Also called a sales conversion rate, this metric showcases the proportion of qualified leads of a company that result in actual sales.
  • Expected Revenue: This refers to the forecast amount of dollar value your law firm will earn from sales and services.

A Basic SEO ROI Formula

There are many tools you can use, like Semrush or Google Analytics, to derive metrics that help measure the ROI of SEO. Some offer insight into organic traffic, while others look at search engine rankings or conversion tracking.

The tools you use to measure SEO ROI depends on the key performance indicators of your digital marketing strategy.

A basic SEO ROI formula might look something like this:

(Gain from Investment—Cost of Investment) / Cost of Investment

You should calculate the expenses of your Search Engine Optimization for lawyers investment to get your “Cost of Investment,” and then reference whatever platform you use to get your “Gain from Investment”.

When determining SEO cost, you need to include agency outsourcing or in-house management, as well as SEO software tools and platforms used.


SEO for lawyers benchmarks


SEO Strategy Goals

Once you have clear benchmarks, you can set clear goals. For example, if you are currently acquiring four new clients from your website per month, and the revenue per client is $5000 on average, then your website brings in approximately $20,000 of business per month.

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Say you want to get to $100,000 per month, now you need to get 20 clients. An expert digital marketing company can tell you if that’s a realistic goal, and then create a road map, including an appropriate marketing budget estimate, that will get you from point A to point B.

Working with SEO experts offers a distinct competitive advantage. In the legal industry, in-house resources are often unequipped to deal with the daily demands of paid advertising, SEO campaigns and social media marketing channels. Over 62% of law firms outsource their marketing efforts for this very reason.

SEO Reporting Tips

There are a lot of fly-by-night marketing agencies who provide no SEO ROI. Any reputable marketing company that offers SEO work should provide detailed performance reports of how your website and marketing content is performing online.

Their report should examine advanced web ranking, website traffic, organic conversions, and any other benchmarks you have deemed necessary to measure. Additionally, these results should be derived from reliable sources, such as Google Analytics data.

You should also report back to your marketing agency, telling them how many new clients you’ve received, and the revenue you’ve generated.

In summary, a good SEO report that delivers marketing ROI should stipulate:

  1. SEO progress made
  2. What marketing tactics have been implemented and their impact.
  3. Further SEO recommendations to drive revenue growth.


SEO for law firms reporting


A Practical Example of the ROI on SEO Efforts

Let’s say you are spending $5,500 per month, $66,000 per year. For the first three to four months, you see no difference in case flow.

Months five to seven, you sign up six clients monthly (and can track the two additional clients per month back to the marketing efforts). Months eight to ten, you sign up nine new clients monthly. And, months eleven to twelve, you get to twelve new clients per month. That’s three new clients per week!

So, for an SEO investment of $66,000, you signed 37 new clients. Considering an average client value of $5,000, you generated 280.3% return on your investment in year one.

Things should considerably pick up in year two. Even if you stay at the twelve clients per month level, your ROI on $66,000 in marketing spend will be 727.3%. Not too shabby.

However, there is a common SEO ROI pitfall that you must be aware of: Many attorneys become disheartened within a few months because they do not see the positive ROI results they want, and are spending money they’d rather keep.

My advice is to keep your cool and be patient – SEO is a marathon. Review monthly SEO reports from your marketing experts and look for positive trends. You should see an increase in organic traffic and the results of conversion optimization start to pay off within three to four months.

After two to three quarters, you’ll have an excellent grasp of the average value you’re getting for your money.

To learn more about how SEO for lawyers works, you can read this post where we explain SEO basics in great detail.

Hire Comrade Digital Marketing Agency to Improve SEO ROI

Having an accurate idea of the ROI of SEO is powerful. This data can be used to get further buy-in for additional investment, showcase digital marketing success and, of course, inform SEO campaigns that b

If your in-house team or marketing company doesn’t deliver good results, then contact us, so we can discuss your link building for law firms, SEO strategy and help you capture the organic search market share that achieves the dollar value investment you’re aiming for.

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Comrade is a digital marketing company that specializes in marketing and website design for attorneys. Read more about our SEO service for law firms. We can help with all kinds of SEO for lawyers, be that SEO for personal injury, SEO for DUI attorney, or any other law firm specialty.

Where do you operate?

Comrade originates in Chicago, but we worked all around the United States. We can help your business grow and increase revenue whenever you are. We have offices across most major cities in the US. For example, we can offer SEO services in Columbus or Indianapolis. You can even find our SEO experts in Houston! If you want to know more about our New York SEO company or find out how exactly we can help you, contact us via the phone or email.

I hope you enjoy reading this blog post.

If you would like to discuss your project, reach out to our specialists.

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About the Author
Sasha Berson
Sasha serves as Managing Partner and VP of Client Solutions for Comrade Digital Marketing, a Chicago-based marketing agency dedicated to solving client’s most pressing digital challenges.
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