|Image from Avvo.com|
A Web search for the name of a lawyer will frequently reveal that lawyer’s Avvo.com listing on the first page of results. On Avvo.com, default profiles are created for lawyers from public information. Unless these profiles are claimed by attorneys to verify their identities, they remain mostly without vital information that viewers can use to learn about a lawyer, their firm and their services. Avvo profiles also have ratings associated with them that are based on very little information. The only way to improve a rating is to complete a profile.
Below are details for the sections that are needed to complete a lawyer's Avvo profile. If information can be copied from a current website bio and LinkedIn profile, we find that, on average, each individual's Avvo profile update will take about 60 to 90 minutes to complete.
Practice Areas - Add all primary practice areas (choices are limited to an extent by Avvo) with the percent of business conducted in each and a brief description of specific and unique services. Including the brief description allows viewers to read about services in more detail through a pop-up bubble on the profile.
Fees and Payment Types - Adding this information should be determined by personal / firm preference.
Contact Information - Add company name, address, office phone, mobile, fax, email, website and up to four blog and social media links.
Languages Spoken - Adding this information should be determined by personal / firm preference.
About Me - Add a professional photo and biographic information. There is an additional option to link YouTube (or Vimeo) videos and have them displayed as well.
There are two types of references on Avvo: client reviews and peer endorsements.
There are automated forms that can be used via this section to request client reviews that should be used at the lawyer's discretion with approval from the firm.
License - Add all states in which the attorney is licensed to practice. Note that you will need a Bar ID Number because Avvo verifies these records.
Work Experience - Add all relevant past and present positions.
Education - Add college, law school and advanced degrees.
Awards - Add relevant awards and recognitions.
Associations - Add organization name, dates and positions served.
Contribution - Avvo has a system of earning points by interacting and communicating with the Avvo community to provide useful information. See the “About Contributions” section below for more information.
Cases - Adding this information should be determined by personal / firm preference. This section requests case titles, details and outcomes.
Publications - Add title, publication name, year and a link to online content, if any.
Speaking Engagements - Add topic, event name, organizer information, date and a link to information online, if any.
About Avvo Contributions
Avvo has a system of earning points by interacting and communicating with the Avvo community to provide useful information. Points can be earned in a variety of ways. What do contributor points mean? On the Legal Leaderboard page, contributors move up and down according to points. Our tests indicate that it isn't obvious to the public how to navigate to this leaderboard area, so the value of contributor points to the consumer is not clear.
As with any social media, if engaging with the Avvo community, lawyers should follow the Rules of Professional Conduct for the states in which they are licensed to practice, should not reveal confidential information and should avoid debating the accuracy of another user's answers or comments. Avvo legal contributors should always conduct themselves professionally and never offer legal advice.
Avvo has become an important player in organic search engine optimization for individual lawyer’s names across the county. Because of this, it is important for lawyers to complete their Avvo profiles at Avvo.com. Taking a short amount of time to complete a profile using the steps above will help support the online marketing of attorney’s names and their law firms.