Put some work into Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and it will forever work for you. When used correctly, SEO can boost your website from the back pages of Google to the top search results.
For financial advisors, your fresh, beautiful website is like a sports car, made to be seen, not parked in the garage. At Advisor Launchpad, we specialize in helping financial advisors use SEO to drive new business to their websites and get the attention they deserve.
Here are the 5 SEO Mistakes Financial Advisors Should Avoid:
1. No Local Search
Everyone loves the home team. Neglecting to optimize your website for local search essentially gives clients to your competitors. As a financial advisor, your local audience is hugely important to the growth of your company. According to Google Trends, customer searches for businesses “near me” doubled in 2015. What does that mean for SEO? The easier it is to find you online, the more likely potential clients will call.
It’s a numbers game. When implementing your SEO strategy, make sure to:
- Name drop! Include region-specific keywords in your page titles and meta-descriptions.
- Be forward! Include your business address and a local phone number on your pages. There’s a reason Advisor Launchpad websites feature a map, address and contact info at the bottom of each page.
- Get Listed! Make sure the contact info for your business is up to date on local-based sites and review networks like Yelp, Merchant Circle, and FourSquare (provided your broker dealer allows you to list your business on these sites).
2. Generic Keywords
Avoid the trap of vying for the most competitive search terms (known as “keywords” in SEO-speak). While these general keywords might garner more traffic, it’s best (and much less expensive) to start with phrases that are unique to you and your firm.
Here’s how to stand out:
- Start specific! Rather than getting lost in the shuffle of “retirement planning” searches, hone in your language to something like, “retirement planning in Santa Monica.” Searches that match your keyword will attract clients like flies to a light.
- As your website’s popularity grows, you can tap into the more commonplace and competitive keywords. Building on your locally-focused foundation, you’ll then be able to more effectively expand your appeal.
3. Written Content
A slick website without equally motivating content is like the emperor with no clothes. Your copy tells your company’s story, and powerful content is the main bridge that sells your expertise in the digital world.
Here’s how great copy can help:
- Unique and carefully crafted copy builds trust. By showing prospective clients your company’s vision for success, you differentiate yourself from your competitors and effectively mark your territory.
- The internet is replete with knockoffs and copies. Google and other search engines reward content that is not only grammatically correct and structurally sound, but they also prioritize truly creative copy. Be original. Build trust. Win business.
4. Anchor Text
Resist getting hyperactive with hyperlinks. Optimizing your anchor text (ie: clickable links embedded in content) is important, but be sure to diversify them as much as you can.
Here are a couple general rules:
- Know your audience. People are increasingly tech savvy and find pages with excessive anchor text are overly salesy. Less is more, and selecting a few but effective places for links will serve you well.
- Avoid using the same keyword more than 50% of the time. Get creative by using variations of phrases, the name of your company, or even a URL to make your anchor text look as natural as possible.
5. Failing to Prioritize SEO
Your sports car needs premium fuel before hitting the road. SEO has the same function for your website. To capitalize on the potential of Search Engine Optimization, it’s best to build your digital marketing strategy around it, rather than applying its principles later in the game.
- To achieve optimal results, make SEO the front-and-center priority for your new online presence.
- A truly comprehensive SEO strategy influences everything from site design to development, architecture, copywriting, content management system and much more.
SEO should be a key factor in every decision you make about your website. By avoiding these 5 pitfalls, you can boost your visibility and expand your clientele.