Keyword Research for Personal Injury Lawyers

On this page I’m going to cover how we do keyword research for our clients. Since we only work with personal injury lawyers, we’re going to focus specifically on doing keyword research for personal injury lawyers. If you’re a personal injury lawyer who’s trying to figure out what keywords you should be targeting, email us at for a copy of all the different practice areas we optimize our clients for including all of the keywords we optimize those pages for. Keyword optimization does vary from market to market but for the most part it’s a great starting place if you’re looking for a DIY approach to keyword research.

There are two main ways we do keyword research for our clients, the freebie way and using SEO tools. I’m going to cover the freebie way first and it’s important to understand that just because it’s free it doesn’t mean it’s less effective. In fact, the freebie methods are in a lot of ways more valuable than anything you can get from the paid tools. However, they do fall short in certain areas and for that reason, it’s important to have an all encompassing approach to keyword research. Any keywords left out of your optimization plan are potential losses of income that go straight to your competitors, so being thorough is extremely important.

I should make clear that for the most part this page is going to be covering keyword research for your practice area pages. If you’re looking for keywords to optimize your blog content for, you should check out our page on content marketing for personal injury lawyers. On the other hand if you’re looking for keywords to run your PPC campaign on, you should check out our page on Google Ads for personal injury lawyers. This page is more geared towards finding bottom funnel keywords with high intent.

Free Keyword Research Methods for Personal Injury Lawyers

Simply using Google and taking a keen interest in what they show can provide you with a lot of ideas on how to approach optimizing your practice pages. All of the tools that we’ll cover in the paid section do their best to reverse engineer Google but when you can get info straight from the source, I’d always place a higher value on it.

The first method is simply putting your search into Google and seeing what Google suggests. I put in ‘Orlando car accident lawyer’ and Google suggested seven different variations of my search with autocomplete. What Google is doing here is taking the keyword you’re looking for and comparing it to what other people used to search for something similar.

It can be painstaking, but by taking the variations that Google suggests and then putting those into the search you can then expand the list of keywords. If you’re in a smaller demographic and there aren’t many suggestions, simply use a larger city rather than your own. People, in general, tend to use the same keywords regardless of what part of the country they’re in.

What we do for our clients is grab all of the keywords that Google suggests and throw them all into a spreadsheet. If I make my way halfway down the list and most of them are close variations, I might switch it up and put the city name first. This can sometimes provide a completely different list of suggested keywords. You can also replace the city name with the state as this will provide a bunch of new suggestions as well most of the time.



The next thing you can do is scroll to the bottom of the page and look at the related searches section. While similar, it is a different list of keywords. Copy all of those and add them into your spreadsheet as well. I’d search Google for as many as possible to see what comes up as related searches for each of them.

If your competitor comes up as a related search for your keywords, this is because they get a significant search volume of people looking up their firm’s name. One thing some people do when they’re starting out with SEO for their personal injury firm is they post on their personal Facebook and LinkedIn accounts that their law firm is up and it’s ranking in Google for “insert random keyword” (for example ‘your firm’s name’) without posting a screenshot and naturally a lot of people will Google it to check and click on your website sending positive engagement metrics to Google. This can boost your website’s presence for related keywords. Of course I wouldn’t encourage this type of trickery, but I thought it’s important you know that it works. 🙂

Free Tools For Keyword Research for Personal Injury Lawyers

Keywords Everywhere – This is a browser extension for Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox. It’ll make the process of creating your spreadsheets 100% easier. It also provides search volume right in the search bar which is handy.

Keyword Surfer Extension – This is another extension for your browser that provides a lot of the same functionality. I find their related keywords and keyword suggestions are less relevant and not as geographically tight but hey, free is free and more is more.

Ubersuggest Extension – Again, similar to the above two and infinitely more annoying than both of them because the creator (Neil Patel) decided it was a good idea to have his face on every page. I couldn’t bare it and I turned it off, I only turn it on when it’s necessary.

Adding all three to your browser at the same time can be really chaotic so I’m not sure I can suggest it in good conscience, but sometimes when I’m feeling a little wacky I go for it. I have all three installed on my browser because they all give different data. I like to be as thorough as possible so it’s worth going through each one of them to make sure my list is as extensive as possible.

Keyword Research Methods for Personal Injury Lawyers Using Paid Tools

I should make it clear that if you’re opening up a one man shop in Podunk, Iowa – the free methods are probably good enough. However if you’re a personal injury lawyer in NYC and take your SEO game seriously, then it’s probably worth doing the following methods. I should also make it clear that none of these links contain any affiliate links, I stand nothing to gain from you using them or not using them.

Ahrefs – Coming in at around $100 a month this is a no brainer for anyone who does serious SEO seriously.

If you click the above pic it’ll open up full size and you can follow along closer. The first thing you need to do is put your competitor’s website in the search bar. If you don’t know who your competitors are, search Google for your main keywords and the websites that come up one through three, that’s them. Now, on the right hand side I drew a perfect arrow to a page labeled ‘Top Pages’, click on that. The page that comes up will look like the screenshot above, I went to the auto accident page and then under the keyword column clicked on the dop down menu with the number 837. This means that this page on this website ranks for 837 different keywords. The big circle is the top 10 but you can hit next and scroll through all of them. I recommend click the ‘Export’ button to the right.

Go through all of your competitors and export all of the keywords that their car accident pages rank for. When I say all of them, I mean all. If you’ve come this far there’s no sense in being lazy and only doing the first couple. I normally go through the first 50-60 websites listed in Google. I don’t do it for all of them, because some of the sites might be directories or other sites that aren’t your direct competitors, but anyone who is a direct competitor I export.

Once I have all of their ranking keywords exported, I then combine all of them into one spreadsheet. I use Google Sheets, not Microsoft excel but I’m sure the concept is the same if you’re using Excel. Once I have a master list of all the keywords I select the column and then go to Data -> Remove Duplicates. I’ll then do a spot check and look for any keywords that look out of place. The end result should be a list of 1500+ keywords that you can optimize your car accidents practice page for.

Pro Tip: Interns and receptionists love doing boring internet marketing tasks. It’s also easier to have a thorough mindset when you delegate.

Surfer SEO – We just use the basic plan for this tool and it’s only $59 and I’ve never needed to upgrade to the other plans

Again, click on the picture to full screen it so you can follow along.

Click on the “Keyword Research” tab at the top, pop in your keyword into the search bar at the top and you’re sitting pretty on a bunch of suggestions. Don’t tell the people in the free section above, but truth is this automates all of that manual work and chaos of using browser extensions into a very simple step. The important thing here is the SERP similarity. I’d keep that as high as possible and do various searches, you can spot check it and use your better judgement but generally speaking I only use keywords with a SERP similarity of 75% or more.

If you scroll down the page you’ll see that below the 75% mark you start running into keywords like “accident lawyers in orlando” which, if you remove the word car or it’s variations (auto, motor vehicle, etc) then it’s no longer the same search intent. Someone looking for an accident lawyer could be looking for a car accident lawyer or a construction accident lawyer or a slip and fall accident lawyer. The search intent is just too different for me to include in my optimization efforts for this page.

If you scroll even further down you start getting into “personal injury attorney orlando” and “traffic accidents orlando” which are even further from the mark. Again, use your best judgement – I’m not saying all keywords below a 75% similarity are trash, I’d just exercise caution.

I should also mention that the SERP Analyzer section is bomb and pays for the tool in itself. If you want to learn about that you can go to the website optimization for personal injury lawyers page but I just mention it here to drive home the fact that price for Surfer SEO is well worth it.

Keyword Research for Personal Injury Lawyers Conclusion

There’s some other tools I could mention like SEMRush and SpyFu but at a certain point it just becomes redundant. Between the free methods, Ahrefs and, you should be sitting pretty on a fat pile of keywords for your practice pages. Again, if you’re looking for keyword research ideas for content marketing and blog posts, that’s on a separate page so check out that for info on that.

The main thing you need to understand when it comes to keyword research for personal injury law, is that when you’re writing your content you want to include as many keywords as possible in your copy so that Google considers your pages relevant to all of the many different variations of your keywords. You do this by having a massive list of keywords and working them into the page in natural and relevant ways.

You don’t need to mention every single keyword in your list explicitly on your pages, in fact what I do is I group them into main topics. For example I’ll put all of the auto accident keywords in one list, then car accidents in another, car crash in another, etc. I’ll make sure that all of the main keywords are mentioned in the copy but from there I’ll go through each of the rest of the ‘secondary’ keywords and make sure any variations like superlative keywords (best, top, etc) are sprinkled through out the page. I won’t try to make sure that ‘best auto accident lawyer in Orlando’ and ‘best car crash lawyer in Orlando’ are all on the page, but if there’s one reference to ‘Are you looking for the best car accident lawyer in Orlando?’ then I’ll consider all of those keywords checked off.

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