Using Google AdWords Banners to Market Legal Services Article - Comic

Google AdWords has been around for years, but it remains both prevalent and reasonably effective. According to WordStream, as of 2012, businesses averaged a 200% return on investment (ROI) with the system, earning $2 for every dollar they paid into AdWords. 1.2 million businesses used the Google service at that time. Attorneys and other legal services use AdWords to drive traffic to their sites, just as companies do in other industries.

This form of advertising has become popular among attorneys and others because you can set it up as PPC (pay per click) so that you only pay when a user clicks on your ad. Google now conceals keyword traffic for how users generally reach your site. However, you can research the keywords that are most likely to appeal to the demographic you’re targeting through a free AdWords tool.

This two-part series explores tactics you can use to ensure the Google AdWords campaign for your law office is a success.


One careful consideration should be exclusions. Keep in mind that AdWords does not just populate your ad on Google Search. Your ad will also appear on any of the 1 million+ sites in the Google Display Network (GDN). You don’t want your ad to appear on every site Google determines is a fit, though.

Within AdWords, go to Display Network > Campaign Exclusions. First, include under Placements. That will exclude paid traffic from AdSense, Google’s affiliate network.

You can also add exclusions to avoid the following types of sites, which both can present ethical conflicts and situations in which users are not fully engaged. These choices can be entered in the same window as above by clicking the +Exclusion button:

  • Parked domains
  • Error pages
  • Sites with sexually suggestive content
  • Sites with juvenile, gross, and/or bizarre content
  • Sites with profanity or otherwise offensive language
  • Sites with military content
  • In-game scenarios
  • Gmob mobile app non-interstitial.

Words & where

Now that you’ve crafted your campaign to only appear on the types of sites and devices you want it to appear, you can focus on keywords and location.

First, select the best languages for your customers.

Then gather the keywords you want to target using the Google AdWords Keyword Planner. Examples might include the following:

  • Personal injury law
  • Find a lawyer
  • Accident attorney.

Next, determine the location where you want users to see your ad. You have various options for geographical targeting, such as certain zip codes or a radius from a zip code of a specified number of miles/kilometers.

The value of testing

Like any creative component of your business, testing is critical. Create ads that give you the best ROI:

  1. Test a significant number of ads and messages.
  2. Test different sizes of banners.
  3. Once you have ample data, analyze the results.
  4. Narrow your ads down to your top designs, colors, and messages.

Over time, you will know what types of people are clicking each ad. Use the ads that perform best for you and drive you the strongest users.


You can choose CPM (cost per 1000 impressions) or CPC (cost per 1 click) for your ads. Of course, CPC is appreciated by many businesses: it allows you only to pay when someone is interested in your ad. However, we prefer CPM because it allows us to optimize branding exposure. Over time with good ads, your CTR (click-through rate) will increase, yielding great ROI. Patience.

When bidding, focus on impressions. Set a manual maximum CPM bid.

Devices & delivery

Enter the Delivery Method (Advanced) menu. You want the Standard option. This method will balance your ads evenly as you go. The data you receive will have an equal number of impressions for your banners so that you can compare side-by-side.

Rotation & Retargeting

You also want to use Ad Rotation. This feature allows you to optimize for clicks, displaying ads expected to provide more clicks from certain types of users.

Ad Scheduling only showing your ads at certain times. However, you will only be able to understand timing after running a broad campaign. The campaign will reveal when people search for your ads.

Make sure also to take advantage of retargeting.

On to Part 2

Clearly, Google AdWords is compelling: a 200% average ROI represents an impressive platform for most businesses. Make proper exclusions, and test carefully using the CPM model. Explore all the various features to define your campaign terms strictly.

Despite our CPM advice above, CPC (or PPC) is useful too. In the second installment of this series, we will explain how to set up text ad pay-per-click campaigns on AdWords.

Note: Marketing is, of course, only one aspect of your business, though. You also want to host your legal data on secure and fast VPS hosting with Atlantic.Net.  We pride ourselves on offering the most popular business solutions like cPanel VPS Hosting and managed cloud hosting.

>>> Continued on Page 2 [will be updated after publishing on June 5, 2014].

By Moazzam Adnan