We all know a good SEO ranking will see your website receive higher organic web search engine results, and therefore more traffic. But with the rules constantly changing on what constitutes SEO best practice, many finance brands tend to fall into the trap of relying on SEO programs like Yoast and All In One SEO to do the hard yards for us.
While there’s no arguing these programs are great – they should complement best practice SEO techniques that come into play at the very start of the copy creation process. Taking some extra time to focus on winning the SEO game is arguably just as important as writing the article itself because, in the end, there’s little point in producing an incredible piece of content if nobody is going to read it.
To help get you up to speed on SEO best practices in 2018, we’ve put together a list outlining the seven steps every finance content marketer should be following to guarantee better search engine ranking.
SEO tip #1 – Adopt weighted page titles
Google favours those words found at the beginning of your title tag, meaning you should always include your target keyword/s as close to the start of the article title as possible. For example, rather than saying “A look into the 7 best SEO practices for finance marketers”, we put our keyword “SEO” right at the front to get our headline “7 SEO best practice tips for finance marketers”. It’s also a good idea to add modifiers such as “best”, “how” and “guide” to help further boost ranking.
SEO tip #2 – Fix broken links
Google’s web crawlers are not a fan of broken links as they lead to a bad user experience. If you have a smaller site, you can manually check broken links using a program such as Check My Links chrome extension and if your site is large, then a paid link checker such as Ahrefs may be needed. Unfortunately, you will need to go through each broken link individually and fix it, but it’s time well-spent and better than simply creating new content.
SEO tip #3 – Place keywords in the first paragraph
Before, Google was paying close attention to how often your keyword was used in an article. Now, it’s turned its focus on where your keyword appears on the page. The earlier your keyword appears, the more importance Google places on it. Best practice policy is to include the article’s primary keyword within the first paragraph, with further target keywords to be found within the first 100 words.
SEO tip #4 – Include LSI (Latent Semantic Indexing) words
LSI keywords are those words that relate heavily to your target keyword. A good example would be if the word “King” was your keyword, then the LSI keywords would be words such as “Queen”, “Royal”, “Palace”, and “Ruler”. Google feels more confident you’re writing a quality relevant article if there’s a strong use of LSI keywords. If you’re struggling to think up great LSI keywords, just jump onto Google and look at “searches related to”, found at the bottom of the page. For best practice, look to include 2-3 LSI keywords in each article.
For best practice, look to include 2-3 LSI keywords in each article.
SEO tip #5 – Use internal links in the copy
Something many finance marketers can often be found guilty of is not linking back to internal articles – but Google will actually rank your site higher if it sees a bunch of internal links included in the copy. When you’re uploading your article, have a look to see if your publication has published relevant articles in the past and add links to them. It’s good practice to use keyword-rich internal links to at least 2-3 older articles related to the topic, and even more if you’ve got a longer piece of content.
SEO tip #6 – Keep URLs short and sweet
With your page URL, you want to make it snappy while still making sure to include your keywords. Drop out any unnecessary words such as ‘and’, ’the’, and ‘for’ – just find the shortest way possible to explain what your article is about: e.g. /SEO-best-practice-tips-content-marketing.
SEO tip #7 – Make structured data your friend
It’s been called the future of search engine marketing, but what exactly is structured data? Structured data is information that is added to a page’s HTML markup that gives search engines more understanding of your site. Search engines then use this data to generate extra valuable information about the business that will appear in search results. A helpful tool to get you started is Google’s Structured Data Markup Helper, which generates HTML code with microdata that you can download and add to your website.
For other tactics that will help boost your finance brands’ SEO ranking, be sure to explore our related articles below. Or, if you’re looking for further advice to hone, develop or implement an effective SEO and content strategy, get in touch.
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- What finance brands need to do to rank on Google