Financial Planning SEO: How to Help Your Niche Find You

5 min read
January 22, 2024
Whether you embrace the technical side of marketing with both arms or at arm's length, the fact remains: leveraging it in your RIA marketing plan will bring you long-term gains. So how does a fee-only financial advisor (who probably prefers financial planning to marketing) go about creating and implementing higher-impact RIA marketing strategies? (Hint: it has three letters) You guessed it—Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the undeniable winner when it comes to connecting you with your niche in the most relevant way.
In this session from XYPN LIVE, I chat about how SEO applies to RIA owners and offer practical, applicable ways to SEO your financial planning business—including the boxes that need to be checked to make sure Google doesn’t leave you in the dark!

Please answer the following questions to watch this exclusive session

Here are the key takeaways from my talk for the TL;DR crowd. 


Google’s Top 10 Ranking Factors:

  1. High-quality, relevant content
  2. Mobile-friendliness 
  3. User’s experience
  4. Loading speed of web page
  5. On-page optimization
  6. Domain age/authority
  7. Internal linking
  8. External linking
  9. Social signals
  10. Security and accessibility

Luckily, you don’t need to check all of these boxes all at once, and every time. In the course of my presentation, I chatted about 4 major areas to make sure your RIA’s website is strong in SEO. 

Your RIA’s Website Speed

The first five seconds of page load time are the most important. In those five seconds, you have the highest ability to convert random web traffic into leads for your financial planning business. After that, conversion rates drop an average of 4.42%. Think about it and count to yourself:
“One Mississippi..
… two Mississippi…”

You get the point. Would you wait more than five “Mississippis” on any given site? Methinks no. And your users probably won’t either, which is why taking care to reduce page load time can have a massive impact on your SEO. 

Step 1: Page speed insights
Load your website into Google’s Pagespeed Insights tool and see which things are keeping your site from blazing through browsers.

Step 2: Fiverr
Without fail, Pagespeed Insights will probably tell you to “reduce render-blocking resources”. Luckily it tells you what those are, and you can cheaply hire a developer from Fiverr to make the adjustments to your code. 

Step 3: Images
Reducing your image sizes to respectable dimensions can have an immediate effect on your speed. If you’re uploading images to your site over 1200 pixels wide, you might be able to re-size them. The larger the image, the longer it takes to load the page. 

Step 4: Videos that auto-play
If you have video backgrounds on your site, you might want to consider making them a static image. The page will elect to load the video before the rest of the page content, and in internet time, that can take AGES. Embedded videos are fine, as long as they are “click-to-play”

Your Website’s Mobile-friendliness

This area of your RIA’s SEO and overall marketing strategy is critical. If you have Google Analytics set up, which I highly recommend, you can tell how much of your traffic is coming from mobile. If you’re not delivering those users a meaningful experience, you risk losing them. Remember, everyone thinks like a consumer on your site. Consumers are fickle. 

Google also indexes your site as if it were a mobile site, whether you like it or not. How nice of them. So check these areas to make sure you don’t get penalized for providing a bad experience:

Make sure your images, text, and headers all size down nicely on your phone. Ensure that paragraphs don’t drone on and take up a whole screen’s worth of real estate. Make sure there is ample padding on the sides of your images and text. Whitespace is your friend. 

Grade your RIA’s website with Google Search Console
Another free tool that will help you stay in the light. Google Search Console has gotten much easier to use in recent years - good on ya, Google. Once you’ve set GSC up for your site, you’ll want to run their Mobile indexing tool to check your pages for errors. It’ll tell you if images don’t display properly, or if text runs off the side of the page. 

Your RIA’s keywords, and how you tag pages

I’ve talked about how to find the best Keywords for your RIA before, and I can’t stress enough that this is the meat and potatoes of your SEO. Finding out what your ideal clients are typing into that search bar is how you’ll get in front of them, so it’s critical to align the keywords you use on your website with those terms.

Check out MOZ SEO
Moz will give you enough of a rudder and sail when it comes to your keyword direction. From there, you can let the wind take you into the SEO sea. For a more in-depth look at keyword research, tools, and strategy, check out my previous article.

Backlinks and content creation for your RIA’s website

Google prioritizes high-quality, relevant, and fresh content above all else. If your website is stagnant and tone-deaf, it’s time for a makeover. In fact, Google’s page score is rumored to weigh 30% on your page’s link building, which is directly related to your content. If you’re not creating blogs, eBooks, newsletters, or videos that are link-worthy, then you won’t expect to see that backlink number rise. The easiest way to do that is to create long-form content for your RIA’s website. 

Long-form content receives, on average, 77.2% more backlinks than short-form content. “Well, Sam, how long is long?” you might ask. A good rule of thumb is to write between 1,500 and 2,000-word blog posts. Pick your topics based on your keyword research, and you should have no trouble writing. One of XYPN’s top-performing blogs is about State De Minimis Exemptions from RIA Registration (or Notice Filing). Surprisingly, “de minimis exemption by state” gets a great deal of search volume, and not a lot of folks writing long-form content about it. 

If you can find topics like that to write about, you’ll be surprised at the number of consideration stage clients that you can sign on. 

SEO doesn’t happen in a vacuum

You might take painful strides only to see marginal results. Don’t worry, the world’s marketers feel your pain. As long as you keep SEO as an integral part of your marketing efforts, you will see the results over time. SEO never sleeps. 

For an undistilled version of this blog, check out my talk at XYPN LIVE 2023, and plan on attending next year. I’ll keep bringing relevant and useful information to our events, and to your emails, so subscribe to our blog to follow along. 

Map your marketing strategy and get traction with clients

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About the Author

Sam is XYPN's Director of Sales & Marketing Operations. He specializes in all things SEO, marketing strategy, and automation.

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