I searched for the keyword "auto accident attorney".
There were 26 results.
I found that a majority of them either have no ratings or many positive ratings. Immediately I knew that this is a area that could be easily dominated.
The first 2 results were paid advertisements, both with 5 star positive feedback.
The results after were sorted by default to "best match"ed, so the list is ranked by how many times the word "auto accident attorney" occurred in the comments and in the business's description. With Yelp's simple algorithm, they then display the results based on the occurrence of the keyword on their business page and rating.
I filtered the search by "Best Review" since I figured "auto accident attorney" is a very narrowed keyword.
Then the first results listed right after the ads was for a attorney that had 37 "5-star" positive reviews over double the average of positive rating from their competitors.
I READ EACH REVIEWS AND IMMEDIATELY NOTICED THAT THEY ALL HAVE SOMETHING IN COMMON.
A majority of the 5-star positive reviews were from people who rated them not based on the positive experience they have hiring them as their attorney but for giving them advice.
Here are the first few ratings from the page
"I emailed Matt for legal help and he responded almost immediately around 10:00 pm. His response contained lots of useful information such that I considered his rate to go over to their office. After a couple more emails where he inquired more about my case (which involved reviewing a company release document), he called me and pretty much told me what I can do in my situation and what further action to take. "
"Update: Matt D. quickly contacted me via Yelp. Somehow my phone call had been overlooked & he asked that I contact him via email w/my case notes. 20" after doing so, I received a reply to my inquiry. Kudos to him for the fast, informative email response! 3.5-4 stars updated from my original 2."
"I was not sure if I needed a lawyer to assist with a minor car accident. So I emailed Matt and he responded via email & phone within just a couple hours. He was extremely friendly and gave me great advice. It turns out that I likely will not need his services this time around but will definitely keep him in my contacts for anything that may come up in the future. Very appreciative of his prompt and direct advice."
"I did not expect any reply when I emailed to inquiry but Matt replied me the next morning. It is great to have such an warmhearted lawyer that can give your case an initial evaluation and honest suggestion before you take further steps. You deserve all the good reviews here!"
The positive reviews were placed to compensate the attorneys for their time giving them legal advice and relieving their stress in their legal ordeal.
This shows how easy it is for Attorneys and Law Offices to dominate Yelp listings by ranking higher, which then leads to potential clients like myself.
All it takes is some time giving legal advice for free without expecting anything in return. A few minutes of your time a day can give you higher ratings and in return give you some potential leads in the future.