Improving an accounting firm’s SEO has to be done in a way that will separate them from their competition due to the high number of firms battling for the same clients. Ranking high in the search engine results pages (SERPs) is the ultimate goal with most Internet users not looking past page one, so a strategic, comprehensive SEO plan is a necessity for greater traffic, leads, and revenue.
Performing SEO for an accounting firm consists of focusing on potential clients’ preferences, ensuring the locality of the business is listed consistently across the Internet, implementing on-page SEO, and configuring analytical tracking to monitor results of the aforementioned SEO efforts.
Step one is to research what potential clients are searching for with regards to their hunt for a suitable accounting firm. Specificity is key, as well as providing information said clients are seeking. Words like Bookkeeping, Accounts, Taxes, Auditing, etc. will help the initial search while narrowing it down to relevant terms such as; Accounting for Small Business will ensure your organization – should it be a small business for example, is “accounted” for in the search engine. Yes, that was a pun.
Optimize On-Page SEO
While narrowing down a relevant search to provide more of an opportunity for prospective clients to find the necessary organization, great care must be taken to ensure that the keywords remain natural in order to prevent penalization from search engines, nor from getting lost in the online shuffle.
Optimizing On-page SEO will give greater depth to the organization (accounting firm) and set them apart from the competition.
More detailed web page titles such as; Tax Accountants for Vancouver businesses for example will take potential clients straight to what they’re searching for. As well, URLs which are relevant, easy on the eye, and including necessary keywords, are sensible options for a unique SEO setup.
Focusing on Clientele
Placing oneself in the shoes of potential clientele is one crucial step to maintaining a following. It also shows sincerity and connection to them that can work toward locking them in for the long-term. For this to happen, it’s recommended to answer questions that have yet to have been asked.
Why is the client here?
What are they searching specifically for?
Secondary information and sources should be considered for also, and with appropriate sub-headings and menu bars.
How to cater to clientele?
Try focusing on local businesses in the community utilizing ‘local SEO.’ This will create a greater presence in the area and place the business ahead of other organizations in the local search engine.
1st on the List offers a comprehensive strategy for Local SEO, which can be found here.
Additionally, setting-up a Google My Business profile, creating localized content, and crucially, listing the business name, address, phone number consistently across the Internet will take the business to the next zenith.
- Google My Business Profile: Creating a profile will begin with the initial setup that includes detailed contact information:
- Exact Business Name
- Telephone Number
- Categorizing the business is the next step; using ‘accounting firm’ is standard but even more detail is preferred. For example, should a business focus on ‘tax preparation’ a tax-related category would make more sense.
- Add the appropriate URL.
- Verify the listing for authenticity and authority. This includes avoiding plagiarism: this can be done by using plagiarism checkers such as CopyScape or Academized.
This can also be done with Facebook, Yelp for Business Owners, Yellow Pages, SuperPages, CitySearch, Yahoo Small Business, Better Business Bureau, Angie’s List Business Center, and Merchant Circle. Ask our team about citation development and whether that could be a benefit to your SEO campaign.
Ensuring relevant content is produced is important for the authenticity of the Google My Business profile. Separating each web page to explain each service will help improve the search engine ranking for each service. For example, this can be done by dedicating pages to sub-genres such as ‘tax preparation for individuals,’ etc.
Having an ‘About Us’ page will help bridge the gap between organization and clientele as it helps build a bond and also allows for the user to find out who can help them with their inquiries. 1st on the List is a good example of what this should look like.
In order to improve your accounting firm’s SEO it is important to consider your online reputation. By featuring testimonials from satisfied clients search engines separate the great accounting firms from the average. Google especially prefers reviews as it’s one of the first things Internet users look for. There are many reputation management services and programs to help assist you in receiving more online reviews and customer feedback.
Organizations can make it easy for businesses to complete reviews by providing the following:
- Google My Business allows for users to Google the organization, then click the ‘Write a Review’ tab. This brings prospective clients to the necessary Clients can also leave reviews on Yelp
- Clients can share links to the site on their respective social media platforms. This is seen as more beneficial than word-of-mouth as it can be done instantly. Additionally, leaving a rating across the social media platforms or simply ‘liking’ the page emphasizes the validity of ones page.
Supporting SEO with paid Ads
Google provides a free planner with which to aid keyword research for local advertising campaigns. Tools such as Google Ads and iSearchFrom.com will not only monitor how often keywords are sought after locally but also check the competitors’ rankings for a given keyword and will allow an organization (accounting firm) to decide where to position a targeted keyword and how to optimize it.
Budget for Apps
Once again, 1st on the List suggests setting-aside a budget for Apps as they improve the visibility and ranking of the mobile App in search engine results as well as App stores such as Apple, Google Play, and Windows. They highlight the percentage of users who utilize an app in relation to the number of apps installed, which is a 30-80% difference. As well, the importance of an increase in Indexing, as well as brand exposure and audience engagement make this crazy to ignore. Furthermore, Swanson argues in his article “How Local SEO is Important to Accounting Firms” (2018) that, “mobile-based searches can yield different results than the same search on a desktop computer” (Swanson, 2018). The author puts this down to Google determining the device being used and delivering results that are best suited to it. Swanson concludes his argument by arguing that “since the number of mobile searches are increasing it’s important to ensure your website is optimized with local SEO” (Swanson, 2018).
Different Types of SEO and their benefits
Web FX highlights the necessity of different SEO’s for accounting firms because of their diverse online presence and ability to attract different kinds of clients. They suggest the following four types of SEO:
SEO Audit services understand the strengths and weaknesses of an SEO strategy. This comprehensive plan chronicles the fastest, and most efficient way of determining why the SEO strategy isn’t working.
As mentioned earlier, local SEO focuses on the people surrounding the local community, while improving the organizations’ presence within it, optimizing the Google My Business profile and creating localized content.
Reaching companies and clients across Canada, the accounting firm can improve its on-page and off-page SEO as well as its Technical SEO.
Enterprise SEO involves competing with the top competitors in high-volume search results. This focuses on organizations with established SEO strategy and rankings.
Don’t Forget Social Media
Like standard SEO, the presence of social media is not only a necessary tool in 2020, but because it’s also forever expanding to the point that, by not keeping up with the latest marketing trends, an organization is liable to be left behind. Rapid Boost highlights its importance by making mention of the ease of which a firm can meet its goals.
For every blog post, video upload, image, like, or comment will lead directly to the firm’s official website and therefore increase traffic. With the changes in social media in 2020 like the effect Tik Tok has on the Internet for example, the right type of humor, social awareness message, or just the right type of appealing image is enough to boost website visitors by the thousands. In a way it humanizes the firm which creates even more of a personal connection with prospective clients, and the feeling of belonging in 2020 is key to the happiness of consumers.
Monitor SEO Results
According to Thomson Reuters the best way to monitor an SEO platform is through a local, non-personalized ranking for a keyword such as iSearchFrom.com. Alternatively, 1st on the List recommends using Google Analytics as it reviews both High and Low Bounce rates and will know when it’s time to change up the targeted keywords list. This can be connected to the Google Search Console – also highly recommended by 1st on the List because of its ability to do more than just monitor the progress of SEO but also provide a comprehensive outlook on everything from Crawl Space, Indexing problems, Traffic Data, and Spam.
Thomson Reuters recommends connecting Analytics to the Console Search and watching each one perform the same function in two separate manners. For example, Analytics will “tell you how often each page is visited and how long visitors spend on each page” while Console Search will “show you which search queries are resulting in visits to your site and how your site currently ranks on average of for each of those keywords.”
Optimizing Conversion Rates
Conversion Rate optimization entails the ratio of user purchases or subscriptions in relation to the number of people visiting a specific page. As 1st on the List mentions here, the keys to victory involve;
- upgrading website security
- improving page speed loading times
- optimizing mobile options
- making purchasing easy
Conversion Rate optimization also needs the help of mobile apps and a reduction in the bounce rating. As Bloom argues in his article, “5 Ways Conversion Rate Optimization Can Drive Revenue for your Firm” (Bloom, 2016) reducing the bounce rate is pivotal to the success of an optimal conversion rate. First off, the bounce rate is the count rate of how many people visit a page on a website, and then directly navigate away from it. In order to prevent this Bloom argues that the content needs to appeal to the mass majority and it needs to be relevant to the search performed by the user.
On top of that, Bloom believes that driving more download sales will expose users to more of the firms’ information and therefore requires the ‘landing’ pages be optimized.
Landing Page: The single web page that appears in response to clicking on a search engine optimized search result, marketing promotion, marketing email, or online advertisement.
Each separate entity requires a diverse marketing structure to ensure an optimal experience for their potential clients. For accounting firms, the ability to provide the necessary keyword structure is vital to their exposure and subsequent traffic. As well, an in-depth plan to narrow down keywords, and emphasizing the locality is necessary for the first step of SEO.
Building a communal feel to the firm will separate the great from the average and this is done through optimizing On-page SEO and by focusing on the clientele’s needs right down to a strong social media presence, and invitation to comment and review the firm’s services.
Monitoring SEO results – especially in the local realm, will ensure the firm is kept one step ahead of its potential faults, and also what is working so that the company can build around its successes and optimize its strengths.
To carry-out further research into what YOU need to do to utilize SEO for accounting firms, contact 1st on the List so they can share their invaluable experience and knowledge in order to provide top-notch SEO for your organization.
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