Attracting clients via your website
We asked Keren Lerner of website design agency Top Left Design for advice on how an adviser firm can use its website to help attract new clients
Rob Kingsbury: Most financial advisers provide similar services, so how can they differentiate themselves through their website?
Keren Lerner: The differentiation comes from who you are in the business, how you approach your clients, where you are located, what type of clients you are very good at helping, and the unique twist you put on your investment services. This is where marketing and operations can overlap. If you don’t have enough differentiators on your website, you can look into how you can improve or innovate in your business, and then reflect that in your website as well. Taking the time out to look at your business and think about how you can keep moving it forward will mean you always stay one step ahead.
RK: Having a website does not guarantee that people will visit it. How can a business ensure it attracts visitors?
KL: Very true – people are not going to wake up with an urge to go and type in your website address. And they may not Google you either. Luckily we have amazing tools at our disposal – Twitter, LinkedIn, email marketing, and your blog will all help to drive traffic to your website – if used cleverly and correctly. This is why I would say invest time in learning these tools properly, and practice becoming better and better at marketing.
As well as attracting new clients, it is a good idea to think of your website as a way of keeping existing clients aware of your services and successes. Keeping them in mind means you can make sections of your website which will be useful to them, such as FAQs’ sections, a resource library, client-focused events and informative blogs. And if you have interesting copy on your website, they may refer other people to it.
RK: Is there anything adviser firms can do to help attract more of the ideal clients they would want to work with?
KL: A website is open to anyone so you could get all sorts of people visiting, but you can steer things in the right direction. To start with, I would go through a keyword research exercise and list the phrases and words you would think people would search for to specifically find you. Then, incorporating these into your copy – in a natural way – will mean your copywriting will resonate with your target audience. This would be on not only your website pages, but also your blog and email newsletter. If you can get a copywriter with a marketing angle to help, then you will of course get better results.
You can also use social media to be very targeted, by first researching the profiles of other people and businesses who are either in your target industry or who also work with the same type of clients, and connecting/building relationships with them online (and offline too). And you can run useful/educational events as well (which can be marketed via your website, blog, email marketing and social media). These ideas should not be taken ad hoc – ideally you should be planning a proper strategy ahead of time and following it systematically. A good marketing strategy combines a mixture of planning content in advance, creating quality content that interests your audience, consistent marketing activity, and engagement with the right type of people.
RK: How often should a business be updating its website content?
KL: It depends on the business, but if you have a blog (and there are many reasons why a business should seriously consider having one) then you can aim to have a new post on your blog once a week on average. This has been statistically measured as the sweet spot for measurable increases in conversion on your website. Of course, the content you choose on your blog is equally important. Your headlines need to capture people and the content needs to be interesting enough to keep people reading (or watching in the case of video).
RK: How often should a business review its entire website to ensure it stays up-to-date and relevant to its market?
It wouldn’t hurt for you to have a meeting with your website in your diary every three months. Spend an hour or so, and go through a mini checklist, asking yourself questions like “Does it reflect who we are now?” and “Is there evidence of what makes us great/unique here?” and “Is it going to interest our audience” as well as checking visual elements such as choice of images and if things are looking fresh enough.
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