SEO for advisors: Mastering keywords


Use the right keyword phrases in your search engine optimization to help your website stand out. Use specific phrases that will be highly ranked by search engines.

Keywords are crucial: They're the reason people find your firm's website when they search for a financial advisor. You can stand out among thousands of advisor sites by using a combination of keyword types, including basic keywords and more descriptive keyword phrases that communicate your unique value. Here are four steps to getting it right:

1. Know the industry keywords

Start by identifying the keywords your ideal clients will likely use to find your site. You can ask your clients what search terms they would use or try online tools such as Google Keyword Planner or Moz Keyword Explorer. Another strategy that can uncover common search terms in your area: Google "financial advisor in (your city)" and pay attention to the suggestions that appear in the search field as you type.

Basic words and phrases for advisors

  • Financial advisor
  • Independent advisor
  • Registered independent advisor
  • Financial advice
  • Financial planning
  • Personalized financial advice
  • Investment goals
  • Financial goals
  • Wealth management
  • Fiduciary
  • Accountable
  • Trustworthy

2. Brainstorm keyword phrases

Consider keyword phrases that prospects might use in a search. Many will search "financial advisor," so it makes sense to use that phrase. But it won't set your website apart from every other advisor's site, so also try more specific phrases—for example, "personalized retirement advice for Houston business owners." When prospects search that phrase, you'll rank higher in their searches. Note that search engines can interpret variations on a phrase, so your words don't have to match a prospect's search exactly.

Sample search

3. Add keywords—selectively 

Use the keywords and phrases you've chosen on each page of your site. Page titles, page headlines, link titles and the first 150 words of content are all good spots to include keywords. Just make sure to use them where they fit naturally and accurately reflect the page content. "Keyword stuffing"—for example, hiding dozens of keywords at the bottom of your page as a way to game the search results—can actually hurt your search engine ranking.

4. Give each page a title and a description

Page titles appear at the top of your browser tab and as the titles of search results. Page descriptions, also known as meta descriptions, show up underneath the page titles on search results and describe what's on the page. Both are important to your page rankings and user click rates. For better search results, write titles and descriptions that are concise and engaging, and accurately reflect the content on the page. You may need a web developer to change these if they're coded in HTML.

Title and descriptions

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.