SEO for advisors: Attracting local clients


3 ways to optimize your site to drive business and build your reputation.

Did you know that Google considers "financial planning" to be a local service? This may be because some investors prefer to meet face-to-face and build a relationship with an advisor they trust. "Focusing on local search is a prime opportunity for advisors," says Adrienne Foote, Managing Director of SEO Management at Charles Schwab.

For example, if you're in Houston, one way to optimize your site is to have Google list it when a user types "Houston financial advisors" in the search box. Another way to capture local prospects' attention is via GPS-enabled searches, which automatically display local businesses at the top of search results. These techniques ensure that you'll appear prominently in Google's list of top local financial services hits.

Optimize your site for local searches using these essential tips:

Include a virtual business card

Your site should clearly display your name, address, email and phone number. This information helps ensure that Web crawlers will index your site correctly and display it in local search results. Whether you include these details in the header or footer of your web pages, keep the treatment consistent and prominent throughout your site. And make sure it's in the site's actual text areas, since crawlers can't draw information from graphics files (ex. a logo).

Virtual business card

Create a profile for business directories

Take advantage of search engines' free business listings, such as Google My Business and Bing Places for Business. These listings can make your site more visible, because your profile will show up in the "Places" directory that appears at the top of local search results. Make sure to keep your profile in these listings up to date and as thorough as possible, so prospects have all the information they need about your firm.

Business directory image

Write clear and specific copy

When you clearly display who you are, what you do, and where you do it, you'll get a higher search engine ranking. Use simple language so search engines have no problem identifying your location, niche (i.e. expertise with a specific market segment) and other critical information. Include this information on your homepage, offerings page and About Us page. However, be careful not to repeat the exact copy on multiple pages, which can hurt your rankings.

Specific copy

What you can do next

Read more articles in our "SEO for Advisors" series to improve your website ranking:

Consider a custodian that invests in your success. If you're thinking about becoming an independent advisor, contact us to learn more about the benefits of a Schwab custodial relationship.