What Exactly is SEO?

The first step to using SEO is knowing what exactly it means. SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. This is the process of gathering internet traffic from organic, editorial, or natural search results. In our case, that helps improve your website’s ranking on the search results page. Remember, the higher your ranking, the more people will see it.

Another reason marketers love SEO is its marketing efficiency ranked second against other marketing strategies. Marketing efficiency focuses on reducing costs without reducing output or results. SEO has a great ROI or return on investment due to its use of organic search and high marketing efficiency rating.

Marketing efficiency of different strategies

What Does SEO Do for Financial Advisors?

Creates a Better User Experience

Financial advisors can use SEO to create a more user-friendly experience for site visitors. While SEO is geared toward search engines, it can also be designed to attract and engage your target audience. For example, an optimized website with relevant content entices visitors to spend more time on your financial advisor’s website. With increased time, comes decreased bounce rates and improved page views.

Helps Targeted Leads

Search engine optimization (SEO) also helps you reach your most viable prospects. With well-researched SEO, you can attract targeted leads with higher conversion rates. In fact, targeted SEO works just as well with local SEO for financial advisors.

Increases Conversion Rates

Converting prospects into clients is a natural byproduct of improving user experience and using targeted SEO effectively. Potential clients will come to your advisor site because you’ve used targeted SEO effectively. And thanks to their great user experience, they’re more likely to want to explore your services.

Helps Improve Brand Awareness

Next, let’s look at the increase in brand awareness thanks to SEO improvements. Besides higher page ranking, SEO creates a longer reach across the Internet and an increase in your authority and trustability. Using this trust to increase your online presence, you can build your brand organically for long-lasting results.

Understanding SEO for Financial Advisors 

SEO is a two-part performance of both art and science. Mostly being used to drive targeted traffic to your website via search engines. What’s more, search engine results are separated into two sections — organic and paid.

Organic Results

Searches that are driven by your content, SEO, and other marketing efforts without the use of paid ads. While search engines rank organic search results based on hundreds of ranking factors, organic traffic is typically seen as the most relevant, authoritative, and trustworthy.

Paid Search Results

These results use ads you’ve purchased to appear first on the search engine result pages. The advantage of paid search is in having your financial advisory firm listed in a position that many potential clients see first. While paid ads can help drive more traffic initially, organic growth typically results in better long-term results.

While Google and other search engines don’t make their search algorithms public, you can use the following criteria for better ranking with global and local SEO for financial advisors:

Relevance

Search engines review your website for content that is related to your keyword. Relevance is a strong determiner of how your site ranks.

Authority

Authority simply means that search engines determine that your content is relevant, accurate, and trustworthy. The authority of your website is determined more than anything else by the number of other sites that link to your site.

On-Page SEO

On-page SEO ensures that search engines can easily find your website and quickly determine its relevance and authority. Well-researched keywords and useful content will tell search engines what search terms and phrases to align with your intentions.

Off-Page SEO

Off-page SEO is anything you do behind the scenes to optimize your website. The goal of off-page SEO is to acquire backlinks from other websites including internal linking and guest blogging.

You can learn even more about SEO for financial advisors from one of our presentations from our video library, SEO Matters.

Providing High-Quality Content is What Matters in SEO

Providing high-quality content means creating content that increases time on the page, reduces bounce rate, and most importantly provides valuable content for the user. High-quality content has to be well-researched, well-written, and optimized for the following:

Understand Search Intent

When you understand your user’s intent, you have a powerful tool for creating the most relevant content. Search intent, also known as keyword intent, is the ultimate goal of the person searching. Since your prospects look for, process, and use search results differently based on their ultimate goal, optimizing for search intent is critical for effective SEO.

Do Keyword Research

Keyword research is a necessity for creating high-quality content. You can create a content masterpiece, but it will have no impact without the right keywords because no one will find it. Research keywords to improve SEO and draw users to your content.

Account for Voice Search

According to Google, 72% of people who own a voice-activated speaker say that the devices are often part of their daily routine. Add in the millions of smartphones, and it’s evident that the growth of AI assistants like Siri and Alexa will continue to increase the demand for SEO geared toward voice search.

Ensure Mobile Optimization

Uberall finds that 69% of smartphone owners use their devices for search when they are shopping for goods or services. More importantly, they find that of the group mentioned above, 82% had performed local searches. These are statistics that provide even more evidence for how critical local SEO for financial advisors is and how a mobile-first marketing approach is so important.

Bolster Security

There is an increasing demand from web users for more secure websites, and it won’t be long before it becomes a must-have. Nowhere is this security more critical than with financial advisor websites. A secure website assures visitors that confidential data is protected from unauthorized access and that those who have access to that data are trustworthy. Just as importantly, tight security tells your visitors that you are a professional who understands your potential client’s concerns.

Improve User Experience

We’ve already discussed how SEO can impact the user experience, but it simply can’t be overstated how important the user experience continues to be from search engine ranking to brand building. The level of trust and authority that visitors attribute to your brand is directly affected by their experiences when using your website.  

Decrease Bounce Rate

Bounce rate refers to how quickly site visitors leave a website, and this tells search engines a lot about the relevance and value of your website. This SEO element and the overall length of time visitors spend on your site have a big impact on rankings and are directly tied to high-quality content, site layout, and keywords.

Increase Backlinking

Backlinks are links to your website from other websites. The number of backlinks you have from reputable and relevant websites helps search engines determine how others in the same or similar industries perceive the value of your content. Simply put, if authoritative websites don’t consider your website to be valuable and relevant, why should a search engine?

Make use of Interlinking

Interlinking is when you link from one piece of content on your website to another piece of content on your website. Interlinking helps search engines further determine what your website is all about. The more relevant the internally linked content is to one another, the more authority and trust search engines will attribute to your site.

Understanding Keywords for SEO

Keywords are words and phrases that define what your content is about, and with SEO for financial advisors, they’re the words and phrases your prospects use when they search for financial services. Keywords are critical because they connect what people are searching for to your content, and the more precise the connection, the better the user experience. Your goal for search engine ranking is to attract organic traffic to your site from the search engine results pages (SERPs), and the keywords you choose to target determine what kind of traffic you get.

Keywords are as much about your audience as they are about your content. To create content that ranks well organically and drives visitors to your site, you need to understand your prospect’s needs in the same language as they do. Check out our presentation about keywords to learn more.

———————————————————————————————————————

We love to share what we’ve learned from the thousands of financial advisors we’ve partnered with, so take a look at more marketing tips or check out our free online video courses on The Art of Digital Marketing. If you want to see how FMG can help you make the most out of your SEO and other digital marketing, you can see our tools for financial advisors on our demo page.