By Lee W. Frederiksen, Ph.D.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is different for professional services firms. What has historically worked for sellers of cameras, vacation packages or shoes does not work for engineering services, accounting or IT programming.
“I spent a lot of time and money teaching our SEO firm about our business,” lamented the Marketing Director at a major regional accounting firm. This disconnect is one of the biggest reasons that most professional services firms have declined to invest in SEO.
But all that is beginning to change. And we’ve just introduced a new guide to help you understand how SEO can be used to drive the growth of your firm: The SEO Guide for Professional Services Executives.
We believe there are two major trends that are driving this change.
First, the rules of SEO are changing. It used to be possible to “fool” search engines into ranking pages high in the search results. There was a profusion of tricks and gimmicks that allowed pages to jump onto the first page of results. Today, all that has changed. Google and other search engines reward sites that contain great content with the highest rankings.
Don’t despair. This is good news for professional services firms. It plays to a strength. Professional services firms are ideally suited to provide great insights and solutions. That’s what they do for their clients, after all.
The second trend is that professional services firms and the marketing professionals who support them are starting to “crack the code” and are learning how to market professional services online.
Consider this. In a recent study of 500 professional services firms, we found that almost 15% of firms get 40% or more of their leads online. And importantly, those firms grow up to 4X faster and are up to twice as profitable. Now there is a competitive advantage!
How do these firms do it? The number one tool they rely on is SEO.
With those results, how could we not write this guide?
Here’s what the SEO Guide covers:
Why SEO is such a good investment for professional services firms
What are the basic SEO concepts every marketer must know
The two aspects of SEO that you must master: Onsite and Offsite
How to measure results
How to decide where to focus your energy
What misconceptions you have to overcome
In short, we’ve tried to capture the most practical SEO ideas in one place. Enjoy the read and be sure to share your best SEO ideas as well. We love your comments and feedback.