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Google Makes it Harder for Legal Marketers to Use Keywords

Google’s new move to make SSL-encrypted searches the default for all logged-in users means less information for legal marketers.

Some big changes are afoot at Google. The short of it is that Google is changing the way they handle searches. In the coming weeks, anyone who is logged into a Google account and enters a search term in the hopes of finding a site, will now be sent to a SSL-encrypted site. What does this mean? Well, if you type in “” you will be redirected automatically to “” instead. The difference is in the “s” which means that it is a secure site, which is a step forward in security. Great, right?

Yes, in terms of security, it is a good thing. But for legal marketers it is not quite so good. Right now, without the “s,” when someone enters search terms into Google and comes to your site, those terms are recorded in your Google Analytics. Knowing the terms people use to find your site is valuable information, as I’ve talked about many times on this blog. If you know the words people are entering to find your firm, you can sprinkle those words and phrases into your copy to create natural search engine optimization and raise your site profile even higher. With this c, you’ll simply see “not provided” when you go to look for keyword information. Google will still provide some data in the form of the top search terms that sent visitors to your site in the last 30 days via Webmaster Tools. And while this is better than nothing, it doesn’t help much when it comes to campaigns created to drive traffic since it’s not day-specific but aggregated over the last 30 days.

At the moment, this change just applies to users who are logged into their Google account, but I expect it will be applied to all searches at some point down the road. Here’s the real difference…keyword information will still be provided to those that purchase AdWords, so if you are willing to pay for your search terms, and many are, this information will still be available to you.

To read more about this, visit this article or this page on the Google blog.

Previously Printed in The Matte Pad

©2020 MAX ADVERTISING | AN ATLANTA ADVERTISING AGENCYNational Law Review, Volume I, Number 321


About this Author


As CEO of Max Advertising and author of The Matte Pad, Tom focuses his endless enthusiasm on crafting creative and lasting marketing campaigns that differentiates his law firm clients, clearly communicates their messages and ultimately grows their practices. Whether a 10-person firm or one of the Am Law 100, he has worked with firms of all sizes. From branding and logo design, to advertising, collateral, websites and social media, Tom integrates it all together to create a cohesive and effective marketing strategy – one that helps his law clients grow and succeed.

Tom frequently...