Written by: Vincent Kwan
Local search is changing the online landscape and has made it easier for advisors to get in front of their customers.
Financial advice is intensely personal and requires a bond of trust between the advisor and the client. It’s very difficult to achieve that trust without an in-person meeting. For this reason, many people feel more comfortable when they can meet their financial advisor face-to-face.
Furthermore, financial advice, especially as related to taxation, really is geographically dependent. As an extreme example, a financial advisor in London isn’t going to be able to offer valid tax advice to someone living and working in New York.
So, most people will search for a financial advisor within their local area. However, until local search came about, the list of results they’d receive often featured advisors and companies from everywhere.
With local search, though, it has become much easier for advisors to dominate their local areas because there’s less competition. Instead of competing with millions of sites, you’re only competing with those in your area.
Here are a few tips to help you climb up the rankings in local search.
Meta Descriptions Are Critical
The meta description is the text displayed under the title and URL of the page in Google’s search engine results pages. This text is essential because it can help convince users to click on your result. It also gives Google a better idea if your page is relevant to the search, which will lead to higher rankings.
A good meta description should be no longer than 160 characters long. Any longer and Google will cut the text off. It should also include your primary keyword.
Also, when writing a meta description, you need to make it interesting. You also want to make users curious, thereby giving them an even better reason to click on your link.
Create Awesome Content
Content rules all in the digital world, and this applies to local search too. If you want to beat the competition in the rankings, then you’re going to have to create better content.
The key is to check out what your competition is doing, and then do it better than they are. If their content for a specific keyword is 2,000 words long, then you create an article that’s 3,000 words long. Of course, it has to include important information and not just filler.
If they don’t have images, or have very few, you use more. If they don’t have videos embedded, create a video explaining something in the article and include it.
This approach is called the skyscraper technique, coined by Brian Dean of Backlinko. Though it might seem difficult at first, you’ll find that this technique will help you not just dominate the SERPs but also to get backlinks from relevant sites.
Use Local Keywords
One essential way in which you can dominate local search is by optimizing your pages for local keywords. So, instead of trying to rank for “financial advisor”, for example, which would be extremely difficult, you optimize your page for “Chicago financial advisor.”
You can even take an inverted approach and go even more local by optimizing for specific neighborhoods and then working your way out. The more specific the term, the easier it will be to rank. The more pages you have ranking at the top, the easier it will be for you to rank for more competitive terms.
Local search has really transformed the way people find financial advisors online. Due to the nature of the relationship, people prefer to actually meet their advisors, which is why they will search for someone in their area.
With local search, it’ll be far easier for you to be found because you aren’t competing with the rest of the country, or even the rest of the world. You’re just competing with advisors in your area.
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