Most Advisors today have a professional website to represent themselves online in front of potential or current clients. In a post-pandemic world where even meetings are conducted online, it’s not really a matter of if you should have a website, but a matter of what website you should have.
Should it be one of those static pages filled with general information, serving as your online business card? Or should it be an engaging piece of online real estate to keep your prospective and current clients hooked and looking for the phone to call you for more? Or should it be somewhere in between?
Here are a few things you must have on your website if you want to stand head and shoulders above other Advisors.
#1. Your unique value proposition
This is critical: Your unique value proposition, or UVP, answers the question “what differentiates you and your firm from every other financial planner in this market?”
This one statement is what provides the reader a reason to keep reading your blog, rather than clicking away to something else.
A great way to include your UVP in your website is to have a prominent header, right on your homepage, called “What Makes Us Different.”
Start with this. Once you have defined your UVP and you’re able to express it, you can build the rest of your site and your business model around it.
#2. A specific listing of your services
Your website should clearly spell out what you do, and who you work with.
Just as importantly, you may want to spell out who you don’t work with. For example, you might want to provide a minimum account size.
#3. Your story
People don’t sign on with financial advisory firms. They sign up with people. Your clients don’t sign up with RBC, or Fidelity, or Raymond James, or Prudential, or any other Wall Street company.
They sign up with you.
If you’re up in a competitive situation with another firm, and the prospect knows and understands your story and why you are in this business, and they don’t know that about the other advisor – you’re going to win the business, almost every time.
#4. A lead capture mechanism
Great content is crucial. But you can’t stop there. If you just have great content and nothing else, you might be running a great online magazine. But you’re a financial advisor, not a magazine publisher. We don’t need readers. We need clients!
To be effective, your website needs to help you convert your readers into prospects, so you can work your pipeline to turn them into clients.
Each page should make it easy for readers to provide contact information – and give them a great reason to do so.
But you can’t stop there. If all you get is a bunch of email addresses from people who’ve downloaded your e-book or white paper, and you don’t do anything with them, you’re wasting the opportunity.
You need a mechanism to move your website leads into your CRM system.
Ideally, it should be automated.
#5. Great content
Content is king. Great content is like a gravitational force that pulls prospects into your orbit.
It’s worth investing in.
If you’re reading this blog entry, it’s because I’m energetically executing a content strategy. The more frequently I update it, the better my search results are… and the more new clients I get.
I want the same thing to be true for you, a hundred-fold.
Don’t limit yourself to blog posts. I don’t! You should have a multi-tiered content strategy that expands on your blog posts using white papers, podcasts, videos, tutorials and webinars.
#6. A compelling offer
A compelling offer is something the readers want or need, that can help them solve a problem, and that they can only get from you.
That’s part of your unique value proposition, right?
The compelling offer can take many forms. Some proven winners include:
- White papers
- Newsletter subscriptions
- Informative videos
- Access to seminars/webinars
- Exclusive content or clubs
These offers take a lot of work and substantial investment. So you need to get something in return for them. Normally, what you get is enough information to add the reader to your contact management system as prospects.
People value their privacy and their anonymity. It’s tough to get them to give up their contact information. So your offer has to be compelling indeed. The most compelling offers are those that address your clients’ biggest ‘pain points.’
But if you do it enough, you’ll have a steady stream of new prospects coming into your orbit, so you can execute your email marketing automation system with them.
You do have a system right?
#7. A call to action
Sure, maybe half of the people out there don’t need a call to action. They already know to put their email information in the box if they want to read your e-book.
The other half need it spelled out.
So don’t risk losing half your good leads! Spell it out for them! Write out a call to action. It takes just a few seconds to do – and it measurably increases the effectiveness of your website.
Make it explicit, and make it obvious.
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Beware that ALL CAPS on a button might be acceptable in most cases, but used in regular text is often considered as online shouting, so use ALL CAPS with caution.
#8. A way to book an appointment directly
Sure, everyone knows you should include basic contact information on your website. But today’s technology makes it easy to go a step beyond: You can include a function on your site that allows interested readers to book a phone or office appointment directly.
This is a quantum leap forward compared to just getting an email address to market to. These people are almost ready to sign on as clients.
#9. Local search relevance
It’s great to have an industry niche or some other way to have nationwide reach. But financial advisors should remember: You always have a home court advantage in your own neighborhood!
So look for ways to include your own neighborhood, town, city and county in your content, and throughout your website. Hosting charity and educational events, and announcing them on your website, is a great way to do this.
Get mentioned in your hometown newspaper and in local blogs and newsletters.
Take advantage of Google My Business listings – that would put you right on the map when people in the area are searching for something you offer.
Having a great website often comes down to having enough money to do it – to come up with a concept but also, to find the right people whom to task with the job to create that website for you. Nevertheless, the above nine things would definitely make you stand apart from the competition and attract some attention among prospects and clients alike. The more of the above you include on your website, the better your online presence and image will be.