How long does it take for a financial adviser to rank their new website high in Google search in 2020? Moreover, what kind of strategy is involved, and are there any shortcuts?
These are the sorts of questions we get all of the time at MarketingAdviser, and we wanted to address some of them here.
Don’t see your question here? Get in touch here to submit a question and we’ll do our best to get back to you with our thoughts. Enjoy the content and regardless, good luck with your campaign!
Does the size of a financial website matter for SEO?
This is a great question and the answer is both “yes” and “no”. This is because website size – alone – is not the sole factor determining its position in Google search.
On the one hand, the number of pages on your financial website does not matter. After all, you could have hundreds of pages on your domain and see none of them ranks highly on Google.
On the other hand, there is only a limited number of keywords you can realistically target on one page. If you have dozens on keywords in your niche, for instance, then it isn’t reasonable simply to publish a 1-page website and watch it glide to the top search results for all of them.
Think of search engine optimisation (SEO) a bit like fishing. Each post you publish on your blog is a bit like “throwing out the line”. If you keep up a steady stream of high-quality content over time, then you have a higher chance of beating your competitor who rarely casts the line at all.
How long does it take a new financial website to rank on Google?
How long does it take to reach the Claingorns from Bristol? Of course, it depends on a range of factors such as your means of transportation, the obstacles you encounter along the way and fuel consumption.
With financial SEO, your efforts to rank highly on Google can also be thought of in this way. Except the factors influencing your journey include things like:
- Your domain authority.
- Your backlink profile.
- The level of search competition you face.
- The user intent behind your keyword(s).
There is no guaranteed route to success, but you can plot a strong “road map” which gives you a good chance of getting to your destination within a certain time and set of resources.
In some cases, we’ve been able to get a new financial website on page 1 of Google within a month. This is often possible with a local financial planning firm, where the level of search competition is lower.
However, if you’re a national financial firm launching a brand new website, then things could take longer. Certain keywords might take 3 months and others might not start showing for 6+ months.
The important thing is to establish realistic expectations from the beginning with your financial marketing agency, regarding the SEO challenges and potential for your distinct case.
Do I need to focus on content or backlinks?
If you follow influential SEO professionals such as Neil Patel, you quickly get the impression that a new financial website should basically spend an equal amount of time on content and promotion.
The former usually takes the form of publishing blog posts which target your keywords. The latter typically involves approaching other relevant, high-quality websites to ask them to link to your content.
Every financial marketing agency has its own distinct approach to this. Some will take a hybrid approach whilst others will focus mostly on backlinks. Here at MarketingAdviser, we find that the old adage in SEO still holds true: content is king.
In other words, why spend half of your time asking people for links (a notoriously difficult task) when you could just spend that time on producing more, or even better, content?
After all, if you produce truly amazing content for your financial marketing, then many people who come across it will naturally link to it anyway. This is really how Google intends SEO to work, anyway. It wants to push up the content which people organically are linking to because it meets their needs, not because the website has an excellent backlink building machine behind it.
Does social media matter for financial SEO?
From what we have seen so far anecdotally in 2020, having a Facebook or similar social channel with a large, engaged following makes little difference to your website’s search engine rankings.
That doesn’t mean it isn’t worthwhile having social media profiles, or building social communities around your brand. After all, these can be useful sources of referral traffic to your website which can even lead to more enquiries.
We’re simply saying that you don’t necessarily need 1000 Likes on Facebook to get to page 1 of Google!
What steps can help SEO for a new financial website?
Suppose you’re a small, local financial planning business in the UK with a new financial website. What can you do to give your website the best chance of beating competitors on local Google search?
Here are some ideas:
- Make sure your website is fast. Google hates slow websites and so do your users. Every second of loading time risks losing conversions to your competitors.
- Create a solid list of 10-20 initial keywords to target. Make sure they are reasonably expected to have good monthly search volume, are not too competitive and that the user intent is there to find your services. A good start is your brand name and names of your financial advisers!
- Produce some excellent content which people will really appreciate. Make sure you also use this content to target your keyword themes.
- Do build some backlinks, but don’t go overboard. Local, authoritative directories can be a good place to start (E.g. Thomson Local). Later, you might consider approaching a client who has a decent website and asking if you could guest post on it, including a link back to your own website.