Financial Services SEO – What works in 2024

SEO for financial services involves increasing organic traffic, boosting conversions and earning authority status. If you’re in the financial services industry or own a financial services company, and you’re interested in ranking high on search engine results pages (SERP), then this article is for you. Join us as we look at what works in 2024.

Your Money or Your Life!

In much older movies (I won’t give away my age), a thief would jump out of a dark alley at an unsuspecting victim and shout, “Your money or your life!” Of course, faced with that kind of option, the victim would give up their money. Well, that is until said thief crossed paths with the hero of the movie and then got a real a** whooping!

Oddly, this term “Your money or your life” (YMYL) is also used to explain types of websites that greatly affect the choices of people and can have serious consequences. Like financial services. However, it also includes health, happiness and safety.  These websites are some of the most valuable across the web because they influence people to make serious life changing decisions. 

Because of its impact, the content must be accurate, helpful and Google compliant. In fact, in 2018, it was suspected that Google’s metric update affected YMYL sites because trustworthiness was given more focus than it had been previously. 

In late 2022, Google updated its Quality Rater Guidelines (QRG), focusing on:

  • Experience – does the author’s experience qualify them to write on the subject?
  • Expertise – is the author of the piece an expert on the subject?
  • Authority – is the author a well-recognized authority on the subject?
  • Trustworthiness – is the content accurate?

The point I’m aiming to make with this section is to show you that any SEO efforts for YMYL websites cannot just focus on driving organic traffic to your website. It must also focus on the quality of the content. Google is interested in sites that have authority and give accurate information – without that, all your SEO efforts would go to waste. 

Let’s get into what works for financial services Search Engine Optimization (SEO) in 2024, but most of let’s make sure it’s not your website that gets an a** whooping from Google. 

Any financial services SEO strategy must include key components such as E-E-A-T, keyword research, local SEO, and backlinks. Below we discuss each of these elements. Before we delve into the details, you should know that sorting out your website will involve a technical audit. You need to know what’s not working to fix it and with SEO, you can’t just guess and blindly start tackling web pages, blog articles, guest posts and internal links. 

We offer our financial services clients a technical audit that would look something like this:

  • Use tools like Ahrefs to scan your website and pick up broken links, error pages and redirect issues
  • Look for pages that are not indexed by Google (this could be due to site structure errors)
  • Perform on-page optimizations, such as the proper use of meta-tags and meta-descriptions. Keyword research will be done to make sure you are targeting the correct keyword for the correct target audience
  • Evaluate internal and external links
  • Evaluate the relevance and accuracy of your content
  • Create an action plan to get your website ranking high on the 1st page of search engine results pages.

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Content Optimization


The number one objective is always to create high-quality content that will interest and help your target audience. In the financial services sector, that content must reflect expertise, accuracy and consistency. Search engines crawl web pages based on their algorithms, looking for the most relevant information related to a certain topic. These topics are the queries typed in by users looking for financial services content. 

Up-to-date, accurate and helpful information is given preference over outdated web pages. For instance, this article is titled “Financial Services SEO – What Works in 2024”. This tells the crawlers that the information is current. 

Therefore content creation, whether it is web pages, or blog articles, must put financial services companies in a place of authority over the subject matter. You can fully expect that a website with outdated information will never make it to the first page of search results, much less to the top of the list. One way of writing relevant content is to use keyword research which we will discuss next. 

Keyword research

Any digital marketing strategy that doesn’t include keyword research will fail. Creating content using relevant keywords for the finance industry is a must. Without getting too technical, the objective is to understand what kind of search volume you’re likely to get from using a certain keyword. 

Your keyword research should revolve around the main services that you provide. For instance, a financial advisor may offer mortgage loans, advice on pension plans, pension compensation, or investments. The keyword research will tell you what users are searching and how popular this keyword is. A high volume keyword (many searches per month) will bring more organic traffic to your website. 

Site structure

Relevant keywords and your site structure form part of SEO work called technical SEO. This is how you organize information on your website according to primary keywords that are relevant for finance companies. An SEO-friendly site structure looks as follows:

This site mapping exercise helps you organize information across your website. You should identify broad categories and then break these into individual pages. Each category page will be driven by a different keyword. Financial service providers might have the following category pages:    

  • Estate Planning
  • Investment Management
  • Mortgage Loans
  • Retirement Planning

Each category will have relevant keywords that users type into Google search. If there are any sub-services you offer, let’s say under investment management, you can create an individual page with its own keywords. 

Setting up your website like this is an SEO best practice and yields the most effective results over the short and medium term. When each of these parts work harmoniously together and create a big picture for users, Google and other search engines are more likely to rank the website higher in the search engine results. 

Local SEO

Local SEO allows users to find businesses in their location. For e.g., You have a wealth management company in Kansas City. Now, this covers a huge area. Let’s say you want to target customers in Overland Park where you have an office. You can create a location page targeting the keyword “wealth management overland park”. Why is this important?  People prefer to deal with businesses in their area, someone that they can trust to understand the local economic conditions and what their needs would be. It’s more likely that a person searching for this term would choose a provider in their area as opposed to the next town or state – even if that business could be conducted online. I guess you could say it’s just human nature to trust your tribe!

Ok, so far we’ve looked at how SEO campaigns are aimed at increasing the accuracy of information on your website, providing keyword-based content that is helpful to users and mapping your website in such a way that search engine algorithms are convinced you’re a solid rock in the financial service industry. Next we turn our attention to how all this wonderful content will be found more quickly. We introduce you to backlinks – the power factor in SEO performance.  Backlinks form part of an off-page SEO strategy. 

Building Backlinks

Financial services providers should definitely build backlinks but this requires a carefully crafted link building strategy. In fact, there’s a good reason this entire article is concentrating on two core strategies for financial services SEO. If you’re going to spend money on SEO, then put at least 60% of it into backlinks. How do backlinks work?

The value of backlinks

You can write a perfectly researched blog post with a lot of helpful information based on your experience as a financial services advisor, and it could (and probably will) just disappear into the black hole of the World Wide Web. If a search engine can’t follow at least one link to it, it will go down in the history books as the best blog post that no one ever saw

What is a link?

A link is a hyperlink which connects two pages that share relevant information. With a link you can refer people to a page, post or another online object. There are two types of links used in SEO.

  • Internal links – These refer readers to other useful content within the same website. When they are used in a blog article, they aim to point the user to either a category page or a specific location page (depending on the relevance of this to the user).
  • External links – these are links that come from other websites. Search engines robots crawl web pages looking for relevant content related to a keyword. When they find a link that points them to another website, they follow the link to the next website and then crawl those pages. This is how most websites are found by users.

We will concentrate our efforts on explaining external links in the remainder of this article.

External links

Building quality links from reputable sites are the fastest way of growing organic traffic to your website. However, with financial services it’s even more important that you are extremely picky about where the links come from. You can easily damage your reputation by using inferior links coming from dodgy websites. This defeats the very competitive advantage that you could get from external links. 

How do you get quality backlinks? That is the million dollar question. The starting point is to create an interactive, exciting and user friendly website. All the things we’ve been discussing so far. If you do this, it will be easier to convince other websites to link to you. Think of this like a referral in business. When one business refers customers to another business they want to be sure that they know their referral won’t make them look bad. It’s the same with backlinks. 

Here are some ways you can build high-quality links to your website.

  • Guest posting – Establish relationships with financial institutions, online magazines or financial forums. Offer to contribute to articles as a guest and ask for a link in return. These sites often have a high domain authority and getting a backlink from them will greatly increase your own ‘street creed’ as far as search engines are concerned. 
  • Create comprehensive e-books or guides on a financial topic – These resources are highly valuable and are more likely to get links from financial advisors, educational institutions and industry experts.  
  • Offer financial tools or calculators – This is an easy way to get backlinks. Mortgage calculators, tax calculators, investment calculators, are all great ways to encourage other websites to link to you. 

An SEO agency like Batlinks can be highly valuable when it comes to building backlinks. With an entire department dedicated to backlinks we know what needs to be done to get the highest quality backlinks from reputable sites. We’ve built thousands of backlinks for our clients and huge shifts in their organic traffic. Some of the biggest successes we’ve seen has been in:

SAAS – a massive 8000% in organic traffic per month in a super competitive niche. 

Accounting – a growth of 403% in organic traffic.

E-Com – +28,000 organic visitors per month.

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Financial services SEO case study

YMYL niches are one of the most difficult to build quick results (for all the reasons we’ve discussed). It takes time for Google and other search engines to trust the site enough to rank it high in SERPs. 

Our customer began work with us in August 2022 with this understanding. They had some good quality content, e-books, webinars and other valuable material. However, their content was not keyword optimized. Also, we needed to get our customer quality backlinks so they could build their reputation online. 

We made building backlinks a priority from the start, understanding that it would take some time in this niche. 

Over time, the organic traffic to their website grew and continues to grow. 

We have also doubled the number of domains that have backlinks to our customer’s website. As at today the customer retains their position on the 1st page of search results for Google. 

Why you should use an SEO agency

The real question is: Do you want to be a financial services expert or an SEO expert? The truth is that reading a few, or many, articles online about SEO is not the same as putting it in practice. 

An SEO agency earns its bread-and-butter from doing this work. We know which elements of SEO to implement at which stage and how to go about it to create the most growth for our customers. We have processes for achieving results that we’ve perfected over time, and they include a diverse team of experts in content creation, link building, client relationships and SEO analytics. 

You would never recommend your own customers to use services that would harm their financial security now and into the future, and we feel the same. We wouldn’t recommend that you attempt financial services SEO all on your own because it may do more damage in the long run. You could end up hurting not only your search engine rankings but also the trustworthiness of your website – this is not something that Google allows you to recover from easily.  

Talk to us about your SEO. If you don’t think it’s something you want to sign up for, no hard feelings, but at least take the step to see what can be done for your website. 



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