Getting an Avvo rating on a lawyer profile is one of the simplest ways to attract new clients. Unfortunately, it seems that today’s firms aren’t using it to their advantage.
A 2019 survey from the American Bar Association revealed that fewer than 15 percent of respondents use sites like Avvo to market their practices. This is because private practice marketing is one of the most difficult areas of running a legal service, but it doesn’t have to be that way for firms of different sizes.
To improve a practice’s online presence, we created this guide to help any lawyer or firm claim their profile on Avvo and generate valuable reviews for additional exposure.
What is Avvo?
Avvo is one of the most popular legal marketplaces on the Web, providing an opportunity for private parties to ask for legal advice on the phone, online at a very low cost, or for free if done using their Q&A forum.
Avvo is also a review website with a proprietary algorithm that rates lawyers based on their profile content as well as information from state bar associations and “other organizations that license legal professionals.”
Is Avvo Free for Lawyers?
A basic listing on Avvo is absolutely free, but Avvo also offers premium marketing services at a cost, and many lawyers opt to activate a premium account, especially in highly competitive markets.
One of the most popular tools on Avvo is the question-and-answer forum. Participation is free, but keep in mind that lawyers are legally responsible for the advice they provide.
How Do I Claim an Avvo profile?
Avvo profiles are really easy to activate or claim. Chances are you are already listed. Those ready to be proactive in the management of their Avvo account can claim their Avvo profile on the “Claim Your Profile” page.
There are two ways to get a profile on Avvo.
Locate an Existing Profile in Avvo’s Directory
The first option to claiming your Avvo profile is to see if it already exists. For lawyers who passed the bar and practiced law for at least one year, chances are Avvo automatically created an existing profile on their site.
Create an Avvo Profile from Scratch
If an existing profile isn’t available, then follow these steps to create an Avvo profile:
- On the the “Claim Your Profile” page, go to the listing of lawyers with similar names. At the bottom, click on the option to create a new profile.
- Fill out basic personal and professional information including the license to practice and states where the lawyer in question is a member of the bar. Users will also need to indicate if they are currently under any disciplinary action.
- To finish the claiming process, users will need to create a username or by logging in via their Facebook, Twitter, Google, or LinkedIn profiles.
How Do I Get Reviews on my Avvo Profile?
Avvo has a built-in feature that allows any lawyer to ask for reviews on their Avvo profile, and it only takes a few steps.
- On the profile dashboard, click on “Request Reviews.”
- On the “Request Review” page, users can enter up to 50 email addresses current and former clients.
- Write a personalized message to increase the likelihood of the recipient leaving a review.
- Click the “Send” button to finalize the process.
Being proactive about client reviews can bring benefits to one lawyer or an entire firm. It shows a lawyer’s proactiveness in wanting feedback as a way to improve their service, and it’s also a fundamental step in improving the trust between the lawyer and the client.
Using the Avvo dashboard is just one way lawyers can go about asking for reviews. They can also provide review request pamphlets in their office, ask the client via phone, or even reach out through social media. Based on ReviewTrackers research, the best time to ask for feedback is around 2-3 p.m. and 6-7 p.m.
How Avvo Reviews Work
So long as they register an Avvo account, any user can post reviews, but the site has some implementations that help ensure the validity of each review. For example, users need to register via Avvo before submitting a review and Avvo moderators take a look at each review to ensure that it meets the site’s community guidelines.
Sometimes, a client review won’t be positive, and it’s important to learn the fine art of how to respond to negative reviews. Aside from thanking the reviewer for their feedback, the rest of the response should come from a place of professionalism. Doing so instills trust and shows future customers that the lawyer is willing to engage with clients.
How Does the Avvo Ratings Work?
Customers can also submit their own ratings and text reviews to help those who want to find a new layer, but keep in mind that a reviewer’s rating and text review does not count towards the overall rating provided by Avvo. To increase their Avvo rating, lawyers will need to add as much information as possible on their Avvo profile.
Should I Look into Avvo Premium?
This is a personal decision that has different benefits and drawbacks for every solo practitioner or law firm. Consider where you are in terms of marketing capacity and billable hours, which should be sufficient enough to determine the suitability of a premium Avvo account.
A Larger Online Footprint with Avvo
Avvo is just one of many business review sites providing opportunities for exposure available online to lawyers and firms alike. By taking advantage of its features and getting client feedback, an Avvo power user can improve their lawyer reputation management skills and retain more loyal clients in the long run.