SEO For Accountants
We have an unhealthy obsession with local optimisation and love skyrocketing companies revenue from inbound traffic. Here are some tips on how you can get more leads to your accountancy firm website using SEO.
Before we get started, do you need a new website or a re-design of an old one?
When running a business, it’s important that you have the best-looking website within your industry, and it consistently gets you, new customers.
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- Business listing
- Leveraging traffic from other websites
- Site structure
- Technical SEO audit
- Directory citations
- User experience
- Blog posting
- Guest posting
Lets get started 🙂
1. Local SEO For Accountants – Google Business Listing
If you haven’t already set this up you can create a listing by going to google.com/business and create a listing, Google will then send you a pin within 3-5 days with a verification pin.
Do the following things for optimising your listing:
- Company logo
- Business address
- Opening hours
- Website link
- Phone number
- Email address
- Company mission
- Company description
- Areas you cover
- Images of your work
- List your services
- Categorise pictures of the team
On-going map listing maintenance (Google now ranks active map listing higher)
Getting reviews – this is essential for converting traffic, we all know when we search for a company on-line we like to read reviews; this is why tripadvisor is so popular when booking a hotel room. So, this is the same for your accountancy firm.
Send links to your happy customers with a direct link to your Google business listing review page. (just asking them to leave a review does not work, 9 times out of 10 they will not know where to post them online) so sending this direct link will make this a simple and easy process for them to do this.
You can do this by searching your company name on Google, clicking “write a review” on the map listing and copying the URL, then sending this to your happy customer.
Posting on Google
Google now offers a feature where you can post directly to the Google business listing, this is a great place to post offers, latest work, blog posts and things that are happening in your business such as local awards or accreditations you have received, for example, if your company has just become a chartered accountants, you should post it on Google.
This is very much like a Facebook post but will show up under your map listing.
2. Leveraging traffic from other sites
Sometimes it is not just about getting keywords found on google but getting traffic from already highly ranked domains.
Let us explain
If you Google the keyword ‘Accountant Essex’ you will see 4 Paid ads, 3 map listings, and the top organic listing is Yell.com:
Rather than fighting these websites, get listed on them, they have already done the hard work so getting prominent positions on these sites can generate a lot more traffic.
So, it’s not just about getting top ranking on Google it’s about leveraging the current rankings of other sites that are listed in your local area.
3. Site structure
Creating the best site structure
Now it’s easy to think your website only needs the following pages.
Your website structure can be broken down into many pages to capture more long tail keywords, for example, if you are a accountancy firm your services can be broken down into separate pages as follows:
- Online Accounting
- Business Valuation
- Corporate Finance
- Corporation Tax
- VAT Return
- Capital Gains
- Annual Accounts
It may seem like a lot of pages, but it is essential to have subpages and do further keyword research and add good quality and engaging content for the user. Then optimise these pages using the keywords in the URL, title and header tags. This will help for better ranking on search engines for each of the keywords and the services.
So, a site structure can look like this, this can be broken down even further pages by doing keyword and competition research.
4. Technical SEO Audit
Here is a simple checklist of errors you might have that are affecting your Google position.
There are various platforms or tools available to perform technical SEO audits like; SEMrush.com or SEOptimer.com, which provides a detailed report on improvements, which help you understand what could be damaging your website ranking.
It is always required to improve your website’s health, and hence it is necessary to regularly check your site for errors and improvements (we recommended doing a health check every two months).
Main areas to fix immediately!!!:
- Crawl errors:
This error occurs when any search engine tries to reach a page of your website but fails to reach it.
- XML Sitemap:
It is the potential file that holds a complete list of page URLs along with some additional information.
- Robot.txt file:
This is the file that instructs the search engine crawler not to crawl certain files.
- Responsive check:
Is your page mobile responsive,(check here)
- Toxic links:
Potential harmful links pointing to the website that are unnatural and unsecure.
- Page load speed:
Loading speed of the page must be minimum to improve the session timing.
- Duplicate titles, descriptions, and headers:
Avoid duplication of titles, descriptions, and headers.
- Broken links:
Adding incomplete URLs in the text or changing the URL address without updating the URL, can create a broken link. Such links should be redirected to appropriate pages of the website.
- Mixed content on the website:
When https pages can find HTTP links, then mixed content errors can be detected.
- Checking HTTP or https (having https is recommended):
It is recommended to have https (SSL) on your website.
These are all important factors to getting large amounts of traffic going to your website.
5. Accountancy Directory Citations
For local search optimisation any business must do the following things:
- Google my business
- High quality local directories
- Niche directories (Accountant related directories)
Local citations and directory listings are business profiles on websites like Yelp, Yell.com and Free Index. There are also many industry-specific directories such as www.local-accountants-uk.co.uk / www.find-uk-accountant.co.uk / www.accountant.co.uk
Top free directories to get your accountancy firm on straight away
These citations are valuable to local SEO because they’re essentially online phone books that associate your website with a physical location.
There are thousands of local directories to build profiles on that will drive traffic and links through to your website.
Make sure that these directories are located in your country and you are not just creating spammy links.
Once you have submitted to these directories you will start receiving sales calls asking you to upgrade your listing, the majority of the time a simple link is all you need, so only upgrade if you really think it is worth it.
6. User Experience
Improving user experience
User experience plays a significant role here in. You can get tons of traffic through to your website, but an essential factor is to make sure it converts! Hence utmost care must be taken when serving for user experience.
Look at your website from an outsider perspective, does your accountancy website have?
- Unique selling points (what makes your accountancy firm different from the competition)
- Reviews (do you have reviews from good sources like Google, Yell and other directories)
- Does the website build trust on the first visit?
- Is it forcing people to take action to either call or submit their email or number
- Is the number displayed clearly?
- Is the website mobile responsive – (Check if website is mobile responsive)
- Is the site fast and not taking ages to load? (check website speed)
These are all factors to consider and fix if there is an issue.
7. Adding Keywords to your accountant website
Google search query and results:
When Google displays the results of our search query, it is in the format where the Google ads are placed at the top & very bottom of the page. The portions after Google ads are usually Business listings followed by the organic search results. The organic search results are the links that rank because of their SEO. You don’t need to pay Google to get into this page, but this requires a well-orchestrated SEO strategy.
Follow these tips to make sure you keep ahead of the game when looking at SEO for accountants.
There are many ways to perform keyword research for your website, Click here for some of the best tools to use. These are some of our favorite keyword research tools:
- Google AdWord Keyword Planner
- Google Search Console
We are not going to cover how to find keywords – others have already done that (see Brian Dean’s guide).
Keywords are relevant as they drive traffic to your blog or website pages for ‘free.’ When searching for relevant keywords for your business, you need to put in some reasonable time and thought.
Adding Accountant Keywords to your website:
This is basic SEO, but still, some people miss these fundamental principles. After keyword research, you need to do SEO by placing the keywords in the right place.
The keywords must be included in the following places:
- The URL www.youraccountancywebsite.co.uk/payroll-london
Well-crafted URLs are easy to understand both for users & search engines indicating what the destination page will contain.
- Title of the Page:
It is the HTML tag that denotes the title of the page, which is displayed on the search engines result page as a clickable headline for the given result.
- Meta description:
Targeted keywords relevant to the content on the web page should be used in the meta description. This will be displayed in the Google search results.
- H1, H2, H3 & H4 Tags
It is the heading tag that must contain targeted keywords because the crawler crawls these tags in search of keywords.
- Image title:
Every title must be given a relevant title it helps in Search Engine Optimisation.
- Image alt tag:
Image alt tags are used to describe the image or what the image is representing. This is for search engines.
- In the content:
Placing the targeted keywords at the right place could help SEO and eventually improve your ranking and traffic towards your website from search engines.
- Maintaining the keyword density:
Keywords must be used around 1 to 3% of the total content. Remember keyword stuffing or unnecessary use of keywords can adversely affect the SEO.
- Website Internal Linking
Internally linking pages to relevant pages passes ranking signals to other pages, for example, if you mention ‘bookkeeping’ in a blog post or other service page, this should link through to the bookkeeping page. A website that does this extremely well is Wikipedia; every page is filled with links to relevant page sources. So essentially over time, we want to make your website an encyclopedia of knowledge for the accountancy industry.
8. Blog Posting
Creating a blog and adding accountancy related content
Done correctly having a blog on your accountancy website will grow your business and expand the reach on search engines.
For e.g. As we are discussing SEO for accountants, the services of accountancy include payroll, tax compliance, bookkeeping, investment schemes, VAT etc. So these services can get more exposure and reach from the content on the blog.
Someone looking pay VAT may search on Google ‘How do I pay VAT?’.
Now if you build a blog with a comprehensive guide on ‘how to submit VAT’ you have a potential customer on your website.
Another example, if a potential customer is looking to do company payroll, they may ask Google, ‘what is the payroll process?’ now you post an excellent informative blog and instructions on how to do this, you have offered free advice and got another potential customer on your website that is looking for a accountant.
This is one of the most significant ways to generate more leads from the blog content. There are thousands of different questions people will be asking Google when having a problem with their accounts. These can be researched using platforms like Ahrefs or Buzzsumo.
Here is an SEO Blog posting funnel.
- Getting high authority accountancy Links
Outreach can be described as making good relationships with an influencer that already have a good following in your niche (accountancy) and trying to convince them to add your content on their blog or social media channels while promoting our services.
Many of the bloggers now ask for money if we want to add our link or promote your services in the content on their blog.
The trick is to write a great piece of content and reach out to this blog and ask for them to link back to you. This will increase domain authority (what is domain authority) and show Google that you are a major player in the accountancy industry.
9. Guest posting
Guest posting is one of the most popular off page activities to gain the traffic (can also be very time consuming), create brand awareness and get a backlink. It is just reaching out to the bloggers, pitch them and request to make your piece of content live on their website with a link back to your site.
Some websites that fall into the accountancy niche that accept guest posting
Accountant Social media Influencers
The same rules apply for social media outreach, just reach out to influencers in your local area or that are in the business niche, as your business is targeting business owners.
Here are some local business Social media Influencers
Quora is a platform that provides you with an opportunity to answer any kind of question regarding accountancy. People ask questions to Quora every day, so this is an excellent platform for you to respond and then and add links of your blog, webpage and put social media accounts there.
10. Accountancy Infographics
Creating traffic through infographics
Infographics have been gaining popularity and become widely used amongst businesses for both digital and print media. They are a bright, effective and artistic way of presenting information without losing the attention of the viewer.
These are great for getting links from infographic websites such as graphs.net and infographicbee.com. Also, great to post on your social media and shows potential customers you are going the extra mile and are experts in your field.
Here is a guide on how to build infographics for SEO (click here)
Here is an example of a accountancy infographic:
Image Source : https://www.acecloudhosting.com
Analysing the Traffic on Google Analytics & Search Console
SEO does not happen overnight, but within the first few months, you will notice a dramatic increase in organic traffic if the steps have been implemented correctly.
Google analytics will break down how many new and returning visitors you are getting. Also, you will need to install Google Search console to find out what people are typing into the search engines to find your website.
- Set up Google Analytics
- Set up Google Search Console
Analytic help you provide the referral links you have received. It also helps you understand the audience like; segmenting the audience according to gender, geographic, sources, page views, session time, bounce rate. This data enables you to understand which blog post is getting more viewers and help understanding user psychology regarding their areas of interest and provide us with a base to create valuable SEO strategies.
The accountancy industry is getting more and more competitive online, and there are no signs of it slowing down, but many companies are not following even the basic steps in SEO.
Just remember slow, and steady wins the race, SEO is a must, just work on it. Results take time, but when Google loves your site, it will give you all that you want for your accountancy business.
Got any questions? Contact us here.