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SEO Checklist for Your Financial Advisor Website

SEO (Search Engine Optimization) plays an important role in helping financial advisors grow their online presence and generate traffic for their websites. And this goes way beyond simply having a financial advisor website with some frequently used keywords added. While that may have been sufficient to get noticed by search engines in the past, it’s simply not enough anymore. 

SEO best practices have changed and become more complex as the internet has evolved and grown. Just about anyone can build and publish a website, making the internet more crowded than ever. And while there’s room for everyone, it’s not as easy to be at the top of the SERPs (search engine results pages) as it once was.


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That’s where a solid SEO strategy becomes a must-have service for any financial advisor marketing strategy. If you’re not sure where to start with SEO, or if you have some SEO initiatives in place but need a refresher, the following is an SEO checklist for your financial advisor website:


Assess Your Current Financial Advisor Website SEO Efforts

Whether you had a complete SEO plan that stalled out or have never considered these three letters before, this is the first item on your SEO to-do list. Even if you have never implemented a formal SEO strategy, if you have a financial advisor website, then you have a place to start. 

This is where you can identify keywords or phrases, check images for tags and descriptions, and much more which we’ll cover below. You can even use 3rd party tools (most of which have a free version) to see where your SEO ranks are for your financial advisor website versus your competitors. These tools can also show areas that need improvement and even offer tips for improving your results. 


Identify Keywords and Phrases

After completing the initial assessment, you can now see which keywords you’re currently benefiting from on your financial advisor website. The next step is to see if there should be any changes or additions to these keywords. Unlike other industries where the products and/or services are constantly changing, financial services and the best keywords have not changed that much over time. 

On the other hand, the way investors use them for search has changed dramatically. This is where your financial advisor website keywords also need to change. In the early days of online search, a user simply typed in a word or phrase and Google returned the most relevant websites based exactly on those words or phrases. That was it. Now, thanks to advancements in AI, Google uses “search intent” as a factor in what results to display on a given search. 

Also referred to as Semantic Search, Google’s algorithms are advanced enough to not only use the search terms entered by investors but also can determine the users’ intention for the searches. Also, users are using mobile devices 62% of the time to initiate online searches, which means investors are entering their search requirements with their voices instead of typing them. 

This is also a game changer because it creates a more conversational search query, often in the form of a question as if that investor was speaking to another person. For example: If someone is looking for a coffee location near them, they would likely type in “Coffee” or “Coffee near me” in the search bar. However, when speaking to the search bar, they might ask “Where is the nearest coffee shop that also serves pastry?” 

The intent is the same with both methods, but there are more available keywords than ever before when you consider how investors search for financial advisors and information. 


Curate Quality Financial Advisor Content

If you haven’t been paying much attention to your financial advisor online content, it’s time to start monitoring it. Remember: Google wants to deliver the most accurate and relevant results to any given search query by investors. If your financial advisor content is outdated, has typos or errors, or doesn’t have a high readability score, you could be missing out on valuable clicks that produce organic search results. 

Your financial advisor content should be relevant, timely, and most closely match the search user’s intent. And while matching keywords may increase the probability of landing on Google’s page one,  it doesn’t end there. 

Google also tracks how long that user stays on your financial advisor webpage after they click on the search result. Known as bounce rate, this measurement is how long someone stays on the page after clicking on it. If they “bounce” off (leave)the page quickly, Google interprets that as a sign that they didn’t find what they were looking for, even though based on the SEO, they should have. This is just one of the many reasons that your financial advisor content and keywords must be aligned and updated over time. 


Technical SEO On Your Financial Advisor Website

SEO can be implemented on many levels. The deeper layers beyond the basics such as keywords and content are known as technical SEO. These layers include the security of your financial advisor website (http vs. https), the load speed, crawlability, site architecture, overall user experience, and more. 

This step on the checklist might seem intimidating and time-consuming, but it shouldn’t be ignored. But that doesn’t mean you can’t call in reinforcements from a digital marketing agency that is experienced in working with financial advisors. Many, more growth-oriented financial advisory firms call on these firms when they need help with SEO for their financial advisor website or marketing efforts that produce online visibility and website traffic.


Check—And Double Check—Your Financial Advisor Website Links

Links play a vital role in your financial advisor website’s SEO. The first step is to assess all links on your financial advisor website and make sure they link to the correct page and aren’t broken (a.k.a. displaying the dreaded 404 “page not found” error). 

This can be caused by incorrectly typing/copying a link or removing a page on your financial advisor website. It’s not recommended that you remove any pages at all, but rather redirect them if you do not want them accessed any longer. 404 errors can damage your financial advisor website’s SEO, as well as drive visitors to competitor's websites.

In addition to validating your financial advisor website links, you should also be sure to include links to reliable 3rd party websites that offer relevant information or resources that would benefit your website visitors. In turn, those websites can link to your financial advisor website. Known as backlinks, these links can boost your SEO visibility over time.


About Paladin

Paladin is a team of digital marketing professionals with more than 100 years of collective financial industry experience marketing our clients' services to individuals, institutions, and financial advisors. Paladin is a boutique agency that was founded in 2003 to provide game-changing digital marketing services to a limited number of firms and professionals in the financial service industry. Our services range from designing and developing custom websites to providing SEO, SEM, and Fractional CMO services. Want more information about our digital marketing services? Email your request to Paladin’s CMO: Jack@PaladinDigitalMarketing.com.

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