Copywriting for financial planners and financial management websites is no walk in the park. It’s one of the most competitive markets out there and it’s growing larger year after year. In fact, by 2024, the personal finance market is expected to grow to over $2.6 billion worldwide.
You’re not only competing with large and established organizations, there are also tons of freely available online resources and user-generated content that promote financial literacy.
If that’s not enough, Google has also made it more difficult for financial content to reach the top of its search results ever since the ‘Medic’ update in late 2018. This update puts ‘pages that could potentially impact the future happiness, health, financial stability, or safety of users’ under much more scrutiny than before. Sites that fall under the category of YMYL or ‘Your Money, Your Life’ need to have more ‘Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness’ or ‘E-A-T’ in order to show up in search results pages.
Does this mean your financial planning website has nope of ranking on Google and other search engines?
No. Updates like these merely reinforce the fact that your site needs to always provide high-quality content. It severely penalizes pages that rely on keyword stuffing, misleading information, and poorly written content that try to ‘game’ the system to get higher ranking pages.
Check out these tips if you want to make your financial copywriting more effective.
- Start with great keywords.
Before even typing your first sentence, you should make a list of keywords to target. Defining the keywords you want to rank for will guide your overall content strategy and content writing process. If it’s a highly competitive keyword, you’ll have to make more of an effort to create content that will offer more than what your competitors have already published.
- Include LSI keywords in your content
LSI keywords refer to the use of Latent Semantic Indexing so that search engines can better understand what your web copy, article or blog post is all about. When a search engine crawls your content, it keeps track of synonyms and semantically related words to figure out the message you’re trying to convey. This way, users can find your content even if they don’t type in the exact keyword you’re using.
Someone looking for information on ‘car loans’ can find your content even if your target keywords are ‘auto loans’. If you sprinkle in more related keywords, or add more sections related to the main topic, there’s a higher chance that people will see your content.
- Write content for people
It’s easy to fall into the trap of writing content specifically to satisfy a search engine’s requirements. Content like this tends to look awful and unappealing to regular people.
Writing content that people will want to read is much more effective overall. It also has the added effect of giving your website more credibility in the eyes of the search engine.
- Identify your target market
Figuring out your target market is a key component to writing compelling copy. As the old saying goes, ‘You can’t please everybody’. It’s much easier to create outstanding content when you can put yourself in your readers’ shoes because it allows you to focus on their most pressing concerns.
For example, retirees will have different financial goals compared to young families who are just starting out.
If you want to see higher conversions, you’ll need to adjust your tone and style to appeal to specific markets. This applies to all aspects of your brand identity and messaging, which includes your web copy, emails, blog posts, and social media.
- Prioritize local SEO
If you’re not a huge organization that already serves different markets nationwide, it’s best to focus on topics that concern people in your local market. This will allow you to narrow down your target keywords to a more manageable list that are less competitive. Discussing local events and regulations will likely lead to more page views from people you can actually offer your services to.
- Create an emotional connection
When you choose the right words, you can make a great lasting impression that will benefit your brand. When talking about financial planning, you can either fill your pages with numbers and statistics, or focus on how people can improve their lives. The latter is more effective if you’re just at the beginning of the customer journey. In many cases, even clients who have already signed up with you won’t bother too much about the nitty-gritty details. That’s what they’re paying you for anyway. You’ll get more attention and inquiries by showing people what you can do for them rather than how you’ll be doing it.
- Use the Bucket Brigade
A bucket brigade is a copywriting technique that slowly drips the information to the reader to keep them interested and encourage them to scroll down and keep on reading. Bucket brigades use short and punchy one-liners that ask questions or make bold claims that capture the reader’s attention.
It’s a great way to break up long blocks of text and segue into another talking point.
Using bucket brigades is a sure-fire way to decrease bounce rates and increase dwell time on your pages. Using catchy one-liners makes it easier for people to digest the general ideas that the article is trying to convey. If they’re not particularly interested in a particular section, you can bring them back by calling their attention to the next sections.
This is really effective in online copywriting since people expect instant gratification and just want to get to the meat of content without having to read through long introductions.
- Don’t forget the mobile aspect
Mobile devices account for roughly half of the world’s website traffic. It would be foolish to ignore this huge population of users, so you have to make sure your website and its content looks great and is easy to read even on smaller screens.
Structure your content so that it’s easy to scroll through, and don’t flood it with long paragraphs like you would in an academic or white paper. Readers should be able to judge whether your content is worth reading through just by looking at your intros and outros. You should also generously use visual aids like bullet points and infographics to make things easier to read and digest.
- Provide credible information
As a financial advisor, you want to project an image that you’re extremely reliable and trustworthy. It will be impossible to make a good first impression and build any kind of trust with your readers if your content is filled with misinformation and just generally poorly written.
Whenever you link to another page to back up your claims, make sure it’s a respectable site with lots of authority on the subject. Otherwise, your site might be put in the same category as tabloids or fake news sites.
- Put more thought into titles, meta tags and descriptions
You should put just as much thought into your titles, meta tags and descriptions as you do with the main body of your content. These are the first things that people will see whenever your page shows up in search results, so it should reflect the quality of the article it’s associated with. Otherwise, people will just scroll past your link and move on to the next one in the list.