How well does your website communicate, connect, and inspire? As a financial advisor, your website’s primary function is to prompt the right person to take action to improve their financial life.
I invite you to review your firm’s website through the eyes of that next client you would like to attract. Ask yourself, “Is the focus on us, or on the person with whom I want to engage?” Too often when I evaluate financial advisors’ websites, the story is all “About Us” right from the first word. You can forget about the S&P 500 charts, market summaries, calculators, and weather forecasts (really?!), too.
When you focus in on what matters most to the people who need your help, you can present a clear, clean message that will be in service of your potential client. To make your review simple I’ve outlined what I believe are the only five questions your website needs to answer so the right people choose to take action. Everything else is clutter.
1) “Am I in the right place?”
You have a matter of seconds to entice your prospective client to stay on your site. They don’t want to waste their time if you can’t help just as you don’t want to waste your time if they aren’t a fit. Generic, firm-centered messaging will fail to make a connection, and you will be lost among competitors. Demonstrate upfront a clear distinction of the client you serve with word choices, images, and offerings that reinforce your ideal clientele. Addressing specific fears and aspirations on your home page before you tout your services will grab the (right) viewer’s attention.
The majority of visitors to your website are not yet ready to become a client or sign up for a free consultation. Most likely, they find you while browsing in between meetings or at lunch time, and they will move on with their day within minutes. What do you offer (e.g. blog or podcast) that does not require the visitor to part with personal information? How do you let the visitor introduce him or herself in a low-risk way? Provide an educational lead magnet (e.g. ebook, checklist, video, webinar) focused on the aspirations or worries of your High Value Hyper Target and request their name and email address. Let the person ease into a relationship and get to know you through the email follow-up and content you send. Be sure to include connect icons for social media on your site, too.
3.) “How do I start now?”
Most people need time to decide to act; however, the person who is ready to start right now should not have to work hard to engage you. Make it clear on your home page what Step #1 is to become a client. Include a phone number visible at the top of each page and a form that prospects can fill out to request a consultation. If it works in your process, embed an appointment calendar from a service such as ScheduleOnce or Bookeo for immediate booking.
4) “Do I trust you, like you, and believe you have expertise I need?”
While questions 1 and 2 help build credibility and likability, visitors want to learn about the person with whom they would entrust their financial future. This introduction starts with a relatable biography. Lead with why you are passionate about the audience you serve and the work you do. Share at a personal level before you list your credentials. Consider a video greeting or be sure to have a warm, welcoming photo in an environment that matches the style you want to portray. Third party connections also provide a credibility boost. Include the media logos (with permission) with story links where you have been featured, include memberships and associations (e.g. FPA), and designation logos (e.g. CFP®) on your site.
5) “Where do I fit in?”
If prospects can’t figure out which services you provide or how your process works, they won’t know where they fit in. This confusion will equate to inaction. Present a clear service overview so your visitor knows what is “for sale” and has enough information to decide if the next step is right for them. Bundle your offerings where possible and give them a name. Explain your service packages with language that is easy to understand (leave out the jargon!). Use flowcharts and visuals to bring your process to life.
When you streamline your focus to the basic questions that a prospect asks, your website becomes a far more effective communication tool, working for both you and your soon-to-be new clients!