What Wealth Management Firms Need to Know About Recent Changes to Google's Algorithm

Lots of fuss in tech land this week as "Mobilegeddon" hit. Or to put it less dramatically, Google announced it was “ boosting the ranking of mobile-friendly pages on mobile search results ”. In effect websites that aren't mobile-friendly may suffer against websites that look and perform better on mobile devices (responsive design).

For professional services and wealth management firms if your website is more than three or so years old, it may well still come up easily when clients or potential clients Google for your firm’s name specifically, but you may find yourself becoming less visible if your company name sounds rather like another company’s (common for financial advice firms) and against general keyword searches.

Does this matter? "Most of my business comes through personal referral" I hear you say and yes good professional services firms thrive primarily through referral from happy clients and productive relationships with other professionals, but research shows that most will check you out online before coming to see you either by going straight to your website (c.80% of people) or by Googling you (roughly two thirds). According to research by US consultancy Hinge, fewer than 1% of people don't check you out at all.

So in light of recent developments and given that as I write this the sun is shining and the last of the daffodils are shriving in a vase by my PC, perhaps now is a good time to spring clean your website’s title tags and URLs , and if it’s not yet mobile friendly (see Google’s page tester here and picture) it might be time to consider a rebuild.

As a final thought, when someone Googles you, generally speaking your website will come up first but the next result is usually your LinkedIn company page because LinkedIn has such strong organic search engine optimisation in its own right. So to belt and braces things, if you haven't updated your company page recently, do, or if you can't remember whose job it is internally, now might be a good time to review your internal processes! The same goes for Google+ by the way, even if you haven’t yet got to grips with sharing content on it.