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For professional services firms and consultants to get new leads and customers, they must ensure their target audience can quickly discover their business and offerings.

You can improve your professional service business’s discoverability by investing in search engine optimization (SEO). Keep reading to learn more about SEO for professional services and boost your brand awareness:

What is SEO for professional services firms?

SEO for professional services is a set of techniques that improves a website’s ranking in search engine results pages (SERPs) when a user types in a relevant query. SEO gives your website a prominent spot in SERPs, enabling your target audience to discover your business, visit your website, and potentially convert as a lead.

How long does SEO for consultants take to see results?

SEO for professional services firms is a long-term strategy that takes time. Most businesses see results after three to six months. In other cases, it may take a year.

Why is SEO for professional services firms important?

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We are at this great, or tough, pivot point depending on how you look at it in the professional service space. Competition density is climbing, while at the same time, target customers are evolving how they spend their time online, and that leaves us with the challenge and opportunity to expand our reach, especially through one of the most cost-effective channels of SEO.

Not only do we need to reach further and more frequently than ever before by increasing the volume and diversity of our SEO content strategies, it needs to be done with a foundation of expressed experiences. Target customers are keen on making confident decisions, in a noisy market.

The professional service organizations that weave in not only their organization’s experience, but the experiences of their key subject-matter experts are the ones that will better capture and retain new customers.

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Alec Marshall Sr Internet Marketing Consultant & Professional Services Industry Expert

Investing in SEO for professional services provides several benefits for consultants and firms.

  • Professional services firms’ pages rank in SERPs: One of the key benefits of SEO for professional services firms is improved ranking in SERPs. By optimizing your site for search engines, you’re improving your business’s discoverability among Internet users who are searching for you and your offerings.
  • SEO for consultants’ drives qualified traffic to your website: Did you know that the first page of search results gets 95% of search traffic? By improving your rank in SERPs, you also increase your organic click-through rate.
  • Professional services firms increase brand awareness by appearing in SERPs: SEO can also boost your professional services firm’s brand awareness. By appearing in SERPs for relevant keywords, your target audience will become more familiar with your brand and offerings!
  • SEO for professional services establishes your business’s credibility: For professional services firms, fostering trust is essential to gain new customers. By appearing prominently in SERPs, your target audience will perceive your firm as a trustworthy business.
  • SEO for consultants boosts local traffic: Consultants and professional services firms need to increase traffic from their area to grow their bottom line. Investing in local SEO services enables you to appear in “near me” searches and reach prospects who need your services.

5 SEO best practices for professional services firms

Implementing SEO for professional services firms isn’t a one-time investment. It’s a long-term strategy that involves auditing your site, strategizing content, and keeping up with the latest search engine algorithm changes.

Here are five SEO best practices for professional services firms:

  1. Perform a site audit
  2. Make sure your website is mobile-friendly
  3. Provide excellent user experience (UX)
  4. Create high-quality, useful content for your target audience
  5. Craft a local link-building strategy

Let’s go through each one:

1. Perform a site audit

Whether you’re hiring an SEO agency or doing SEO in-house, you should perform a site audit. This first step measures how your website is performing and get baseline data of its performance against key SEO metrics.

Screaming Frog overview report for issues

You can use free tools like SEO Checker to audit your site. Freemium tools like Screaming Frog and Ahrefs also have other handy SEO audit features that tell you how to improve your on-page, off-page, and technical SEO.

2. Make sure your website is mobile-friendly

Google uses mobile-first indexing when it crawls and indexes websites. What does that mean for consultants and professional services firms?

Mobile site view

It means you must optimize your website with mobile in mind, since Google prioritizes the mobile format over the desktop one. To make your site mobile-friendly, here are some tips:

  • Implement a responsive design: Responsive design is a web design approach in which page elements adjust according to the user’s screen size and device. As a result, the web page elements display properly whether a user is using a desktop or mobile phone.
  • Mind your page speed: Page speed is important for mobile sites. Use Google’s PageSpeed Insights to check how fast your page loads on mobile and desktop. You should also monitor your site’s Core Web Vitals, which you can do in Google Search Console.
  • Check your site’s mobile-friendliness with tools: Use Google’s free mobile-friendly test to check your URL’s mobile-friendliness.

3. Provide excellent UX

UX refers to how a user engages with a system or website. For web design, excellent UX makes staying on your website easy for users because it’s easy to navigate and interact with your website.

UX example in professional services

When a website offers excellent UX, it sends a positive signal to search engines about your site and its page experience. Not to mention, you make it easier for people to do business with your team — frustrate them, and they’ll choose someone else.

4. Create high-quality, useful content for your target audience

Next on our list of SEO best practices for professional services firms is creating useful content for your target audience.

Professional services content

Always create content with your target audience in mind. What information will they find useful? What content will satisfy their search intent?

Here are some tips for creating quality, useful content for your professional services firm’s website:

  • Conduct keyword research: Find the keywords your prospects use when searching for your business and products.
  • Understand your prospects’ search intent: Once you know the keywords your target audience uses, create content around your prospects’ search intent. Search intent is the motivation behind a user’s query into a search engine.
  • Publish helpful content: Google’s helpful content update rewards pages that meet a searcher’s expectations and address their search intent with helpful content.
  • Showcase E-E-A-T with your content: What is E-E-A-T? E-E-A-T stands for Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness. Google uses the E-E-A-T framework to analyze your content quality and rank it accordingly. If you’re an interior design consultant, demonstrating E-E-A-T in your blog posts sends Google positive signals.

That said, avoid publishing content for the sake of trying to rank in SERPs. Thin content can result in your page getting demoted or de-indexed.

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“Our systems give even more weight to content that aligns with strong E-E-A-T for topics that could significantly impact the health, financial stability, or safety of people, or the welfare or well-being of society. We call these “Your Money or Your Life” topics, or YMYL for short.”

Google Search Central Source

As a professional services organization, you’ll sometimes write about Your Money, Your Life (YMYL) topics. For example, a financial advisor or accounting firm might produce content that includes recommendations or answers to common financial questions.

Google pays special attention to YMYL topics, which means it’s critical to deliver accurate and helpful content. If you’re not an expert in certain topics, get advice from an expert within your company. They can ensure you produce content that the entire company endorses. Content marketing services can also help you in producing content on a one-time or ongoing basis.

And dont’ forget to check your content for grammar errors! You might be wondering, “does grammar matter in content marketing?” Yes! Correct grammar sends valuable trust signals to your audience, so be sure to check and correct any mistakes!

5. Craft a local link-building strategy

Link building is a strategy that aims to get reputable and relevant links to your professional services firm’s website. Local link building, a critical component of SEO for consultants, improves your site’s ranking in local searches because it tells Google that other sites vouch for your credibility.

You can earn backlinks from reputable sites by publishing content related websites can link to. Publishing original content like market research, survey results, and infographics can help you get backlinks from other websites.

You can also reach out to other local and relevant websites that may repurpose your content and provide a link back to your site. Link building tools can help you identify these back link opportunities and more.

Invest in SEO for professional services today

You can get a prominent spot in SERPs and drive qualified traffic to your site by implementing SEO strategies for professional services. As a result, your target audience will find your business and consider you when they need your services!

Want to get started with SEO for professional services? Contact the team to learn more about how we can help your team and drive revenue for your business!