Guide to Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for Accountants
Search Engine Optimization has revolutionized the digital marketing scene with its highly targeted analytics for businesses all around the globe. Be it a commercial business, non-governmental body, education institution, food chain, or whatever one can think of everyone is benefiting from it. Search engine giants like Google have laid down general guidelines that have been revised numerous times to set a standard for everyone to follow.
Like every other business, accounting firms are faced with more competition in the market than ever. Attracting new clients especially the big fishes can be quite challenging. SEO for accountants is therefore extremely vital to establish a strong brand identity online.
In our previous article we built upon the importance of SEO for accountants. This one will be dedicated to providing you simple guidelines for getting the SEO for your accounting firm.
So, let’s get you all geared up for starting SEO for your accounting firm:
Structure each page to facilitate the visitors
One of the most important things for any business marketing online especially accounting firms is the structure of their pages. The structure primarily refers to the layout or template of a page. Visitors are directed to the homepage whenever they search you online.
This is the page that deserves the most importance. Intuitive designs and templates feel very natural to the users and have proven to increase the session time of the users. Follow the ‘less is more’ mantra and try not to overwhelm the visitors by adding a lot of interactive elements to it. While these interactive elements may look appealing on the desktop, think whether or not they will be convenient if the users open your website through their smartphone. We all are hooked to our cell phones and mostly use them to look for something online.
However what you can also do is create a different design for people who view your website through their phones. It is generally recommended that you prepare a template that can fit or adapt to multiple screen sizes. Whichever option you go for, just keep in mind that user-friendliness of your website is the key to securing a good ranking in Google
Strengthen your sitemap
SEO for accountants also entails strengthening the structure of the website which is commonly referred to as the sitemap. A good structure shows clarity and shows how seriously you mean your business. The structure of your website makes navigating on your website easier for the visitors.
A good site structure effectively links the pages of the website with each other. If a user lands on one page and wants to go to another, a simple tap should do that. Many great websites create a natural link between each page compelling their visitors to check out another page of their website. Your site structure is not only important for the visitors; it is also something Google crawlers take into account while analyzing your website. Google crawlers roam about on your website and if they are provided with a strong route that takes them from one page to another, they will rate your website better. This would definitely play a role in improving the ranking of your website. The better is the ranking, the more the traffic.
While setting the structure of your website, make sure the elements you add are highly-responsive. The buttons in the drop down (or any other type of menu that you wish to use) must be responsive. This allows quick actions and enhances user experience.
Perform Website Audits
A website audit is basically an analytical test for the website’s performance. It tells you about the different parameters or elements of your website. It can identify dead and error links harboring on your website.
Perform website audits every now and then. It also tells you about the speed of your website. As per the general guidelines, your website must not take more than 4 seconds to load. Users lose interest and abandon websites if they take more than 4-5 seconds to load. Moreover, website audits give you a chance to correct the errors or optimize the website in a much better way. Once you have identified the problems, you can figure out how to go about them.
There are different types of audits that you can perform. The technical audits, for instance, can tell you how the backlinks on your website are doing. It also shows the dead links that you can later remove. Many links contain malicious content that can be harmful for your website if it stays there for too long. Such links also show up in the audits. Get Google Analytics installed on your website as doing the website audits in SEO for accountants will be a piece of cake. All you will ever have to do is tap on the Analytics sticky bar to see how your website is performing.
Take care of every technicality
By technicality we mean a few of the most important parameters in terms of SEO for accountants. These include Meta descriptions, heading tags, title tags, alt tags, URLs, and images. Each of these factors has their own importance and collectively strengthen the SEO of a website.
A Meta description is those few lines that you see underneath every search result entry whenever you search for anything on Google or any other search engine. This description is sort of a brief summary of what the page is about. It needs to be compelling enough for the users to open the page. It must contain the keyword(s) you want your website to get ranked on. Heading tags are one of the most convenient ways to improve the readability of your content. It allows you to write content and divide them between different headings in a much more effective way. These tags also help improve the SEO and hence must be used in the right manner (e.g., H1 before H2).
While adding images to the website make sure they are optimized as well. Image optimization entails adding high resolution images with alt texts. Each portion of the webpage has a different requirement in terms of the size of the image. Follow the basic size guidelines. At times, the size of the image can slow the webpage down. Check if that is the case with any of your webpages.
Strengthen your overall digital presence
SEO for accountants is not only limited to the website. Other digital platforms such as social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter), LinkedIn, Google My Business, Google+, and more also contribute to your digital presence.
The world is clearly run by social media. The word on social media spreads like fire. Nobody can deny the importance of social media today. Likewise, for accounting firms, social media presence can make a huge difference. Work on your social media profiles/accounts. Make them more engaging and post things every now and then. Create a LinkedIn profile as it is a must for every business especially for accounting firms these days.
Social media has a huge outreach and when integrated with the website can help you increase ROI and generate leads. You can set up ad campaigns, target a particular region or group of people, and can experiment with various marketing strategies. Whether you are targeting the local audience or the international ones, social platforms can do the job for you.
Lastly, you can’t ace it all with a one-man army. There are professionals who can perfect each of these tasks. For instance you have web developers who can help you out with designing your website, content writers for writing unique and relevant content, SEO specialists for SEO and website audits, and more. You can freelance these services and hire people on a project basis if you have a tight budget.
If you have the resources to hire a team then go ahead with it. A couple of these resources are only a one-time investment. Once you have developed a decent website and are done with the SEO of the entire site, you will only need a content writer and social media manager for the follow ups.
With SEO, be it local or international, your accounting firm is going to do so much better visibility as well as performance wise. Getting positive results out of SEO does not happen overnight and you will have to patiently wait until you start to notice a visible change in your website’s traffic.
Follow our tried and tested SEO guidelines or hire professionals, your call!