ny business that’s serious about making a splash online will have heard of search engine optimisation (SEO for short). But is this digital marketing discipline it a worthwhile investment for financial consultants and advisors? And if so, what should a typical SEO campaign involve? In this blog, we’re going to take a closer look at the role that SEO can play in the marketing strategy of a financial services organisation.
The changing definition of search engine optimisation
Before we take a closer look at the ways in which financial consultants can use SEO to boost their online presence, let’s define what the practice actually is (right now, in 2019).
The aim of SEO is to increase the visibility of a website (or a web entity) within the search engines for queries that are relevant to its content. The idea is, if you can rank well within a platform such as Google for keywords that describe your company’s products or services, you’re exposing yourself to more potential customers who are searching for what you have to offer. Better search rankings means more enquiries; and nine times out of ten, receiving more enquiries will lead to more sales. As long as there’s nothing inherently wrong with your website, of course.
Sounds simple enough, right?
The problem is, SEO is constantly evolving.
Back in the 2000s, you could ‘trick’ the search engines into believing that your web content was worthy of higher listings. All you had to do was scatter keywords throughout your web copy and arrange a few links back to your domain, and you would be flying high as a well-regarded financial consultant in no time at all. But this is no longer the case. Many of the tools and techniques that marketers used to use to boost search rankings are obsolete. SEO methods that were considered cutting-edge just a year or two ago are now likely to be out of date and totally ineffective.
SEO has, in fact, matured into a multi-faceted discipline. It’s digital PR. It’s writing and sharing useful, engaging content. It’s monitoring all of the technical aspects of your web platform. It’s working around the clock to ensure that the people who reach your site enjoy a fast, seamless experience, regardless of whether they’re browsing on a desktop or a mobile device. It’s all of these things combined – which means that an SEO campaign is a huge undertaking for any company, let alone a firm within a specialist, demanding and ever-changing niche such as yours.
The benefits of SEO for financial consultants
SEO may be a tricky business these days, but that’s not to say it can’t bring limitless advantages to financial service providers who want to capture more of their market. An effective SEO campaign will:
Make it easier for potential clients to find your business.
If you can’t be found in search, you’ll struggle to find new clients online. As long as you’re targeting the right search terms, SEO will put you right in front of people who need your help.
Generate quality traffic to your website.
Normally a user will only click on your listing if they’re genuinely interested in what you have to offer – so the majority of the leads you receive will already be qualified.
Improve your brand’s presence online.
Appearing consistently in the results helps you to make a name for yourself.
Enable you to position yourself in amongst your biggest competitors.
If your biggest rivals are helping themselves to a significant share of the market thanks to their SEO campaign, why can’t you do the same?
Pay for itself!
SEO is a front-ended process. It takes hard work and commitment to rank well – but once you’re enjoying healthy positions, the exposure you’ll achieve will bring you a fantastic return on your investment in the longer term.
For the best results, don’t try to tackle your SEO campaign yourself.
It can be tempting to want to ‘give SEO a go’, especially if you’re a smaller firm or an independent financial consultant. But doing so could do your marketing campaign more harm than good.
Get it right, and your SEO strategy could propel your business to dizzying new heights. But get it wrong, and you could cause irreversible damage to your website (and have to spend even more time and money straightening things out).
This is why, in almost every case, we would recommend outsourcing your SEO requirements to a specialist consultant who has plenty of experience in optimising and ranking websites for financial advisors.
Written by Ben Stanbury