PPC (Pay Per Click) Advertising for Lawyers

What is PPC (Pay Per Click) 

PPC, or Pay Per Click, is a digital advertising model where advertisers pay a fee each time one of their ads is clicked.  PPC allows businesses to bid for ad placement in a search engine’s sponsored links when someone searches for a keyword related to their business offering on Google Ads, Facebook, LinkedIn etc. In Google Ads these typical appear above the organic results and are usually right at the top of the page. For example with PPC you can bid on “Family Lawyer London” and have your website show up in the top position. 

PPC has various advantages, such as immediate visibility, precise targeting options, ability to track performance and control over your budget. However, it requires careful strategy, ongoing optimization, and consistent budget management to ensure that you aren’t wasting money.

Does Google Ads Work for Lawyers?

Google Ads can indeed be an effective marketing channel for law firms. With Google Ads, you can target people who are actively searching for a lawyer which is possibly the strongest signal there is. The platform allows precise targeting based on factors such as location, keywords, device, and demographics. This can ensure that your ads are being seen by your potential customers.

Guide on Setting up Google Ads for a Law Firm


Account Creation

The First step is to create an account with Google Ads. You will need a gmail account to set this up and I would not recommend using smart campaigns.

Keyword Research and Selection

Conduct keyword research (can be done with various tools, we personally use the Google keyword planner), to identify terms you want your ads to show against. Although the terms that you want to advertise on may be obvious such as “family lawyer east london” it’s always good to review keyword tools to identify opportunities and ensure that you understand how your target market is searching.

We would advise you to not just go after highly searched terms, but also include some longer tail keywords which have more search intent, for example “divorce” is a lot more searched than “divorce lawyer” however someone looking just for divorce may not want to retain a lawyers services – remember each click you get results in a cost.

Also group keywords together in similar themes (e.g. all divorce keywords together). This will be important later as we start to assemble the account. 

On the flip side also look out for keywords that you do not wish to show up for (example would be “jobs”, “employment” etc.). Keep this list handy as you will need it for your “negative keywords”. 

Create Ad Copy

My next step from here is to create ad copy. Ad Copy is essentially the ad a person would see when they are searching for your keyword terms. Google now uses Responsive Search Ads, which consists of up to 15 headlines and 4 description lines, my suggestion is to have at least 8 headlines and 3 description lines.

There are character limits for ad copy as well, which makes the process a lot more difficult to say the least. Headlines can not be longer than 30 characters and descriptions can’t be longer than 90 characters.

When writing ad copy, make sure to try and be compelling as possible, while highlighting some of the core reasons that people should choose you over the competition. Also make sure you are following the advertising guidelines for lawyers, as there are certain things that you are not allowed to say (Google will not automatically flag this).

Campaign & Ad Group Set-up

Now that you have your keywords selected, it’s time to set up some campaigns. I recommend doing keyword research first, as it helps me decide how I am going to organise my campaigns. I usually group campaigns by services (have separate campaigns for divorce, child custody, family lawyer etc.). Ad groups then take those themes and further segment them with additional variants such as “near me” or “best”.

When setting up a campaign, make sure to select a search campaign and ensure the campaign goals align with your business goals. Personally I start with maximise clicks as it allows you to define how much you want to bid in the auction. This allows you to have some data for Google to use before switching to another bidding strategy.

Most of the settings are at the campaign level, so setting up the ad-groups should be much quicker. Remember campaigns should be higher level service themes, and ad group should be grouping those themes by keywords. See below an example of the structure being implemented

  • Campaign: Divorce
    • Ad Group: Divorce Lawyer
    • Ad Group: Divorce Solicitor
    • Ad Group: Divorce Lawyer London
    • Ad Group: Divorce Lawyer for Women
  • Campaign: Family Lawyer
    • Ad Group: Family Lawyer
    • Ad Group: Family Solicitor 
    • Ad Group: Best Family Solicitor 

Conversion Tracking Implementation

One of the biggest benefits to digital marketing is unlike traditional advertising (TV etc.) we can track what users are doing after engaging with the ad. This means we are able to see real-time results from marketing campaigns and are able to measure the effectiveness of campaigns.

I would highly recommend setting up Google Analytics (GA4) – which is a free Analytics tool from Google. You may need some help from a developer to ensure that the tracking is set up correctly and conversions are being recorded for your important events such as form submissions and phone calls. Ensure these conversions are set up in Google Ads (either by importing them from GA4 or setting up a Google Ads conversion tag)

Budget Management & Optimisation

Now that you have the campaigns and conversions set up you are ready to start advertising! I strongly do not suggest the set it and “forget it” approach, make sure you are actively monitoring the account as Google will often make changes that will affect your campaigns. Campaigns have a daily budget, but are allowed to exceed the amount stated, in some instances I have seen campaigns spend 2/3x the daily budget. 

Testing with different optimisation strategies as well can help you generate more leads from the same budget, sadly there is no specific tricks or settings that work in 100% of cases and as a result it is recommended to do some testing in order to find what works best for your company


We hope this guide has been helpful, as a note this is a beginner guide and does not fully cover the complexity of Google Ads as that would take a lot more pages! Feel free to reach out to the team here that has over 20 years of experience.