A backlink is when a website, besides your own, links to your website. The previous sentence is itself a backlink -- it links this article to the #1 Google result for the search query, “What is a backlink?” Having a backlink to your site lets Google know your URL has a greater, or more reliable, authority score that includes accurate information or data relevant to the reader’s search intent. As a result, this moves your website higher in the search results for a given keyword or keyword phrase.
SEO for financial advisors comprises of many strategies for getting backlinks, boosting your website’s search ranking, and bringing your website more traffic. In this post, we’ll list five ways to get backlinks in order of increasing complexity.
Building Your Backlink Awareness: Nofollow vs. Follow Backlinks
Before getting started, it’s worth noting that not all backlinks are created equal. Some backlinks are “nofollow” backlinks, meaning they don’t offer the same beneficial SEO properties of “dofollow” links. The biggest difference between nofollow and follow links, according to Backlinko, is that the nofollow link has an HTML tag that tells Google not to let that link affect PageRank. So, just because a website has linked to you, don’t assume that the site will be using a “dofollow” link.
As explained by Neil Patel, there is ongoing deliberation over the benefits of each type of backlink. Whether you have a follow or nofollow backlink, any visitor can click it and be directed to your website. Although the nofollow link won’t directly boost SEO like a follow link will, it may still bring users to your website.
SEO For Financial Advisors: 5 Backlink Building Strategies
#1. Update Your Listings on Professional Association Websites
The quickest and easiest way to score backlinks is to update your listings on all your current memberships with professional associations. Some examples include:
- CFP Board
- Financial Planning Association
- National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA)
- Garrett Planning Network
- XY Planning Network
If you’re already a member of one of the above organizations, there is little opportunity cost to updating your profile with a link to your website.
#2. Buy a Slot at a “Find an Advisor” Website
You can increase backlinks by purchasing a slot on the various consumer-facing websites meant to connect advisors and consumers. One top-ranking website that does this is SmartAsset.com.
Of course, you don’t have to stop with just one. When acquiring valuable, non-spammy backlinks, it’s the more, the merrier.
#3. Media Inquiries
Listing your information on a profile page is easy, but it’s slightly more difficult to wax poetic about your subject matter expertise.
Financial advisor marketing expert Taylor Schulte suggests leveraging journalists in need to acquire backlinks. One venue for this is Help a Reporter Out (HARO), which “connects journalists seeking expertise to include in their content with sources who have that expertise.” If a journalist chooses to use you as a source, they may be able to assist you by linking back to your website, thus juicing your site’s SEO.
While you may not always get the backlink you want in exchange for your time, you can use it as an opportunity to create connections.
#4. Guest Posts
Another way to gain recognition for yourself and your website is writing an article on someone else’s platform – in other words, writing a guest post. In a guest post, you offer to write an article in your area of expertise for a venue that caters to your target demographic.
For example, if you’re an advisor assisting ultra-high-net-worth clients with trust formation, offer to write a guest post for probate attorneys in your area. You can include a link to your website in the post, as well as your byline. Before linking to yourself, confirm with the publishing venue that this is an accepted practice for their site.
#5. Create Your Own “Find an Advisor” Website
Lastly, you can create a second website that redirects the reader toward your primary website. Of course, creating an entirely new website is no simple feat, which is why we’ve saved this idea for last.
A financial advisor aggregator website can list financial advisors that share commonalities. Those commonalities may be experts in specific subject matters, such as student loan debt or advisors catering to clients residing in specific geographic regions. Of course, you’ll want to include your website on the aggregator website, in addition to other reputable advisors.
The San Diego Financial Advisors Network is one great example of a purpose-built website that helps consumers find fee-only financial advisors in San Diego.
If creating a second website is too daunting, consider adding a blog post to your existing website on the same subject. Schulte’s “The 7 Best San Diego Financial Advisors” blog post is one great example of how to create blog articles that reference financial advisors.
SEO For Financial Advisors: Improve Your SEO Ranking with Backlink Checking
You can keep tabs on your backlink-collecting adventure by using SEO analytics tools, such as Ahrefs’ free backlink checker. Remember, no single backlink will move your website from page 10 to page 1 of Google’s search results. You will need multiple backlinks from high-quality websites with high authority scores, increasing in number over time.
Much like a client’s financial plan, your website marketing efforts are never complete. It requires constant updates to achieve the desired goals.