There are more than three million searches every year on Google search for financial advisors and their services. In this episode I will show you how to rank your practice google business profile higher on google map and local search results using a seven steps process.
Hello everyone and welcome to LeadCenter.AI. My name is Mustapha and, on this channel, I help financial advisors like you grow their revenue faster with digital lead generation strategies. if you are new to this channel, welcome. I drop an episode every week with actionable strategies on how to grow your practice from online channels so be sure to hit the subscribe button and that bell icon that way you will get notified every single time I drop an episode. Over the last 26 years I worked in the enterprise and startup space. After spending more than 19 years with Microsoft and sales and marketing in the US and overseas, I launched my first startup, and I successfully grew it to a multi-million dollars business. After COVID-19, I moved back to Houston Texas to launch LeadCenter.AI. I worked with hundreds of small and medium businesses in the US and overseas to build and execute effective digital marketing strategies. At the time of recording this episode, LeadCenter.AI helped more than 500 businesses that used our digital services and or platform to generate more than 45 000 leads and more than 33 million dollars in revenue.
Advantages of Google Local Search
So, there are two major advantages for Google local search or Google maps versus normal organic search especially for small and medium business:
1. It gives a fighting chance for local businesses against larger companies and experienced marketplaces. To demonstrate that let me here switch to Google search and type financial advisor Houston. So, what happens is that when you type a local commercial keyword like this, what will show first is Google Ads, then Google map and local search, and then the normal organic search. The problem with normal organic search historically especially for keywords with high difficulty is that only experienced marketplaces or very large organizations can rank in page one or at least in the first five or six links in page one which makes it hard for small and medium businesses to be able to drive traffic or leads from organic search. Now, what Google is doing is that they are putting Google business map as well as local search on top of those organic search results and usually the first two or three links they will get more than 90% of the traffic that happens in google. When I click on more business, we can see it’s all local businesses. No marketplaces no large news outlets or large organization except if they have offices inside this area. So that means a local business with less marketing budget and less spend on SEO will be able to rank higher.
2. Search in general is more important than other channels because of the high purchase. To understand that term we need to look at something called the buyer decision journey or the consumer decision journey. So, the consumer goes through a funnel before they decide to buy. In that funnel, they first go into an awareness stage where buyers are aware of the problem or need. Then they go into a consideration stage where buyer begins to research options available to solve their problem. Then they go into evaluation down the funnel where buyers narrow down the options and conduct final research. Then the buyer will decide to buy. One of the great things about search engines is that the buyer enters immediately the evaluation stage. If you are trying a direct ranking strategy for high intent keywords like financial advisor near me retirement planning or the services that your practice offer directly, this is where google search fits. So, it starts here, and it makes it faster for you to convert that lead to an actual business.
The Three factors that Impacts your Ranking
There are three factors that impact your google business profile ranking in google maps or google local search:
- the first of them is How well a local business profile matches what someone is searching for, that is relevance. Do you have the proper keywords that people are using to search for your services in your local business profile.
- the second reason is distance which is how far is that user or that buyer away from your location.
- the third is prominence. it comes from information that google has about your business from across the web like links articles and directories as well as the number of reviews and the ranking of those reviews.
The Seven Steps Process to Rank your financial practice Google Business Profile
1. first is keywords research. You need to do proper keywords research to figure out what are the keywords that people are searching for, what is the volume of search on them, and how difficult they are to rank for. This will provide input into the second step in the process which is content development
2. Content development. For Google business profile there is a lot of content that needs to be added there in various areas. Make sure that you have proper keywords inserted in the description and the title of each profile section.
3. The third step of the process is to fill up your Google business profile. that’s the physical address, phone numbers, categories, attributes, and service listings. You need to make sure that you have unique content. Also make sure that the keywords are inserted in proper places in services. Categories are very important area for ranking as well as service listings. You need the right amount of content with at least 500 words for each service.
4. The fourth factor that will impact the ranking, and this is a continuous process is reviews. Under reviews, there are three sub factors:
- The count
- The score and
- are you responding to reviews or not.
The count is how many reviews you have versus your competitor. so if you have a 100 reviews and your competitor has 50 most probably you’ll rank higher. However the score of the reviews will have a major impact. Even if you have 100 reviews with an average score of 3 while your competitor has only 50 reviews with an average score of 4.9. Most probably your competitor will rank higher. One area that I see a lot of small and medium businesses ignore doing is responding to reviews. So you need to respond to every review whether it’s bad or good. There are etiquettes for responding to bad reviews. But this gives a strong signal to Google that you are responding fast enough to customer service issues. That will give you a higher ranking.
5. the fifth step in the process is what we call website on-page search engine optimization. That’s the website that you link to your business profile.
- Does it have the proper keywords in the proper places?
- Does it have dedicated landing pages for each service?
- Other SEO factors like performance, sitemap, internal backlinks, and the structure of the website.
- Do you have a blog section and are you posting articles regularly?
6. The sixth factor is the off-page SEO. Which are backlinks to your website. A backlink is a third-party website linking to your website. There are also four sub-factors for back-linking:
- The count of backlinks that you have out there in the web
- The domain authority of the websites that has those backlinks
- Those websites are they relevant to your business or not.
- Are they backlinking to your website with your brand name only or are they backlinking with the proper keywords in those links.
7. the seventh factor is continuous update. After you optimize your Google business profile and your website on-page and off-page SEO, you need to continue doing updates to the Google business profile by posting in the update section, adding events if you do events, and continue building backlinks to your websites as well as make sure that your website has continuous fresh content with the relevant keywords and interesting content for your target audience.
Thank you for watching this please feel free to visit our website at LeadCenter.AI. We help financial advisors by analyzing their business and provide them with a free marketing plan and how to optimize to generate more leads from online channels. You can contact us also at firstname.lastname@example.org or you can call us toll free at 888-291-7116