December 10, 2015
Good SEO practice is essential in any industry, but in the financial sector it becomes arguably even more important due to the competitive nature of the market.
Interestingly, 82% of people who recently purchased a personal loan did initial research online, making it one of the most researched topics prior to purchase.
Here’s our rundown of the top SEO tips for the finance industry.
1) Do your keyword research.
Keyword research is absolutely key. In order for your page to rank, it is vital that you know what you want to rank for, and whether that’s the best keyword for you – is it going to bring you a good amount of traffic?
There are quick and easy ways of doing your research, for example through Google Keyword Planner or SEMrush, and so coming to a conclusion about which keywords you should be trying to rank for shouldn’t take much time or effort.
However, in the finance industry main keywords such as ‘mortgages’, ‘loans’ and ‘savings account’ are going to be difficult to rank for if you’re not one of the big players in the market. As a result, it may be an idea to take a look at keywords which still get a good volume of traffic, and try and rank for those initially.
Furthermore, optimising your page for relevant long-tail keywords is a trick which many businesses miss. These long-tail keyphrases could potentially bring you hundreds of extra visits each month, which in turn could mean increased leads.
Also, take a look at how previous visitors to your site found you in your Google Analytics. Did they search direct for your brand, or did they enter a search query such as “best current account” or “fixed rate mortgage”?
2) Stand-out meta descriptions.
Meta descriptions essentially ‘sell the click’ to the consumer, and so making sure that all of your meta descriptions are up to date, relevant and engaging will ensure that you’re receiving clicks from the right people.
Meta descriptions should only be between 150 and 160 characters long, and should include keywords relevant to your site, although be careful not to fall into the trap of keyword stuffing.
Here’s a good example of a meta description:
3) Relevant, engaging & shareable content.
Of course, your content will have to include keywords, however be careful of the aforementioned ‘keyword stuffing’, which is essentially repeating your chosen keyword within the content on your site.
For example: “Bank X’s credit card is the best credit card. Contact us when you need a credit card.”
This is one of the worst things you can do from an SEO perspective, and will result in your site being penalised in the SERPs.
Not only does the content on your site have to contain the relevant keywords, but you also have to make sure that the content isn’t dull and boring. Essentially, you need to get creative and think outside the box when it comes to content creation – putting video, how-to guides and infographics on your blog page are all great ideas for engaging your audience, and getting them to share your content.
Not only is the shared content a great way of building your brand, but it also contributes to your search rankings. Links from social media sites are considered higher-quality as the domains have a higher web authority and Trust Flow.
Following on from links on social media, let’s take a look at the other way of getting links to your site.
There has been a long running debate as to whether link-building is still alive and well, or whether it’s a pointless waste of time. Well, the links which are pointing back to your site play a part in Google’s ranking factors, and so getting links from sites relevant to yours is going to help you rank higher up in the SERPs.
You have to be careful with this though, as building too many links too quickly, or building links on sites which aren’t relevant will potentially cause you problems with the Penguin algorithm.
5) Mobile optimisation.
According to Google’s Consumer Barometer Survey 2015, 60% of consumers use a search engine via their smartphone at least on a weekly basis, and so it’s becoming increasingly important for websites to be optimised for both desktop and mobile use.
In the financial sector, it’s essential that companies stand out from the crowd in what, for consumers, is quite a dull sector. You need to be connected with your target audience, and not putting them off with a misfit mobile offering, where pages don’t fit their screen size or load properly.
Get in touch with us for more information and a discussion about how we can help you with your site.