Link Building for Financial Institutions: A Complete Guide

Search engine optimization (SEO) is crucial for financial institutions to stand out online. 93% of online experiences start with a search engine. Effective link building for financial institutions can boost their SEO to drive more qualified traffic.

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Understanding Link Building in Finance
  3. The Link Building Landscape in Finance
  4. Link Building Strategies for Financial Institutions
  5. Building High-Quality Backlinks
  6. Compliance Considerations for Financial Link Building
  7. Measuring the Success of Link Building for Financial Institutions Efforts
  8. Link Building Case Studies from Financial Institutions
  9. Emerging Trends to Incorporate in Financial Link Building Campaigns
  10. Conclusion
  11. Frequently Asked Questions

Understanding Link Building in Finance

Link building may conjure images of shady tactics and manipulations. However, when done correctly, it’s simply the process of earning backlink mentions from external websites. This helps build domain authority and search engine rankings.

As one of the top three ranking factors, according to Moz, reputable backlinks signal trust and subject matter expertise. This drives higher positioning in search engines like Google and Bing. These are key channels, given that 75% of searchers don’t look past page one results (Source: HubSpot).

Link opportunities must first time be earned through compelling, helpful content and resources worthy of referencing. Link building tactics require extra diligence and care for highly regulated industries like financial services.

The Link Building Landscape in Finance

Link building for financial institutions has a unique environment. Earning backlinks can be complicated by legal requirements because it’s heavily regulated. There are also risk considerations, compliance processes, and ethical expectations. Simultaneously, the perceived integrity of financial institutions also presents link and partnership opportunities.

As per DemandMetric, content marketing costs 62% less than traditional marketing and sees 300% more leads. This presents a major link building avenue. The goal is to position financial advisors, banks, and credit unions as experts through content. This can be educational blogs, market insights, consumer guides, videos, and more. This can help secure authoritative backlinks.

Specific link building channels carry more weight for the finance world. Profile links from marquee outlets like the Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, Forbes, and Bloomberg help establish credibility. Guest contribution opportunities in leading finance publications are also coveted.

For financial brands with a local presence, community link building offers ROI. Backlinks from regional directories, sponsorships, and partnerships with local events are beneficial. 

Additionally, news mentions on city-specific publications and outreach to community influencers can all contribute to better link building. These are even more effective when targeted to the appropriate geographical areas serviced.

Measuring Link Building Success
Measuring Link Building Success

Link Building Strategies for Financial Institutions

The competitive landscape calls for action beyond passive approaches if financial brands hope to stand out. Here are proactive yet ethical strategies for link building for financial institutions to earn high-quality backlinks at scale:

Answering Financial Questions with Content

Finance remains complex for most consumers and businesses. Creating helpful explanatory content and resources to answer most Google questions presents link and brand visibility opportunities.

For example, finding guides defining niche topics can position your account or your financial institution as an expert resource. You’ll get backlinks if your content is worthy of referencing with backlinks from other authoritative sites. Some sample topics you could cover include the following:

  • Small business accounting terminology
  • Retirement planning strategies
  • Emerging global financial trends
  • Housing market forecasts
  • Decoded explanations of banking/investing concepts

Develop Targeted Local Link Building Campaigns

For financial organizations with a physical local presence, targeted community link building should be a priority. Proactively seeking out sponsorships and partnerships can secure valuable and relevant backlinks. It can also help build local brand goodwill through community support. You can try seeking partnerships with the following:

  • Local events
  • News outlets
  • Magazines
  • Town councils
  • Chambers of commerce, etc.

For example, local event sponsorships where a bank sponsors school fundraisers, local races, or charity events can build community links. Having branch managers join local business associations and Facebook Groups can facilitate local references. The key is ensuring visibility and involvement in the life of local communities an institution serves.

Create Link-Worthy Industry Guides

Expansive best-in guides and directory-style resources curating the “best of” across financial niches can attract backlinks. Industry guides entice financial companies to actively request inclusion. This can result in acquiring backlinks as the tradeoff. 

Proactively promoting and distributing such guides to veteran industry players, investors and upstarts can help build recurring links at scale. Here are some industry guides that you can try working with:

  • Best Investment Firms for Retirement Planning
  • Top 100 Financial Advisors for High Net Worth Individuals
  • Leading Customer-Rated Banks for Small Businesses

Guest Post on Relevant Finance Industry Blogs & Publications

Past guest blog posting strategies had dubious connotations. Thankfully, link building for financial institutions is viable when done legitimately. Contributing guest posts to popular financial blogs, news sites, and industry publications is a great way to build links.

In-house financial experts or leadership should be positioned as credible industry voices. This secures opportunities for them to provide guest articles and allows backlinks where appropriate. Guest pieces should give tangible value to the audience through actionable advice vs. overly self-promotional.

Building High-Quality Backlinks

Link building campaigns can be complicated. Backlink quality and relevance carry substantially more weight than large quantities of links.

Links to money are not made equal in Google’s eyes. Financial institutions must be hyper-focused on securing high-quality backlinks. These come from reputable industry publications, high domain/page authority sites, and contextual sites where a finance link serves the audience.

Surprisingly, 65% of digital marketers surveyed still find link building to be the most challenging component of SEO, according to an analysis by Databox. The difficulty lies in finding and evaluating quality link opportunities and gauging actual value.

There are various ways to uncover potential link channels. Here are the following strategies you can explore:

  • Manual research
  • SEO tools like BuzzStream
  • Outreach emails
  • Leveraging online partnerships
  • PR support

Sites worthy of focus include:

  • Industry Powerhouses – Forbes, Bloomberg, Wall Street Journal
  • Popular Mainstream Publications – New York Times, Washington Post, Business Insider
  • Contextually Relevant Publications – Fortune, Investment News, The Financial Brand, BankRate
  • High Authority Directories – Alexa, BestCompany

Compliance Considerations for Financial Link Building

Like any marketing for heavily regulated financial services, link building requires extra care and compliance considerations.

Financial institutions must avoid shady tactics that could jeopardize credibility with customers and regulators. Deceptive practices like buying links while hiding sponsored relationships damage trust. This is critical given statistics that 92% of consumers believe more in organic search results than ads, according to the SEO Tribunal.

Many types of financial links also require legal review. For example, links associated specifically with event sponsorships may warrant compliance approval depending on context. Agencies and networks selling sponsored links introduce more risk factors as well.

Err on the safe side by having compliance or legal contacts on site to review link building strategies, language, disclosures, and tactics when applicable. Transparency and ethical practices minimize compliance red flags.

Measuring the Success of Link Building for Financial Institutions Efforts

Link building remains a long-game initiative with compounding returns over time. However, financial services marketing teams still need interim benchmarks to track effectiveness.

Key metrics to quantify success include:

  • Domain/Page Authority – Overall authority scores should steadily increase.
  • Number of Referring Domains – The number of unique domains links reside on.
  • Referral Traffic – Measure upticks in visits from link referrals.
  • Links from High-Quality Sites – Manual track links secured from target media outlets.

According to CoSchedule, marketers who set measurable goals see 376% increased success rates. Establish periodic goals across the above metrics to quantify the link building impact and identify needed optimizations.

Link Building Case Studies from Financial Institutions

Real-world examples further showcase exactly how banks, credit unions, and investment firms drive link-building success.

An independent investment advisory firm prioritized link building from highly reputable finance publications. This includes The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Barron’s, and InvestorPlace. 

Contributed articles on these platforms showcase expertise and profile pieces. This results in press mentions. Focusing solely on driving this high-authority placement rapidly increased overall domain authority.

Alternatively, a regional bank invested heavily in local link building partnerships and sponsoring school programs. They also focused on local Little League teams, periodic scholarships, and community events. This community involvement earned links from local news stories, regional event/program sites, social media tags, and directory listings. This helps drive more conversions by enhancing local SEO and exposure.

Emerging Trends to Incorporate in Financial Link Building Campaigns

Emerging Trends in Financial Link Building
Emerging Trends in Financial Link Building

Link building strategies continuously evolve as search algorithms, other data, consumer behaviors, and compliance expectations develop. It’s just like all other disciplines in the perpetually shifting world of digital marketing.

Future developments will impact link building considerations as they change search and discovery. This includes voice search optimizations, integration with artificial intelligence, blockchain technologies, and augmented reality. Approaches will demand increased personalization and context to drive clicks from the link build service referrals.

Content continues moving from text-based article assets to interactive tools, video explainers, quizzes, podcast interviews, and more. All represent linkable assets if they offer enough value.

According to Internet Live Stats, Google processes over 5.6 billion daily searches. Standing still means falling behind. Continually push financial link building campaigns to incorporate the latest proven trends and innovations.


Attracting customers online increasingly depends on financial institutions securing visibility where people are already searching. It’s all about landing on Google pages one and two.

Earning high-quality backlinks remains one of the most direct ways to drive discoverability. It also brings in regular traffic while communicating subject matter expertise and trust.

Multifaceted link building for financial institutions benefits greatly from proactive and ethical campaigns. These campaigns must encompass mass reach and local community links.

Measuring efforts, setting benchmarks, and incorporating new trends ensures maximum return on investment.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What kinds of links should financial companies avoid?

Avoid tactics like buying links with nofollow tags, link schemes, link spamming, and anything else generally seen as deceptive or manipulative. Prioritize natural branded mentions.

2. What goals and metrics indicate link building success?

Track domain and page authority score monthly for increases. Additionally, monitor monthly referral traffic from link domains and log links secured on target media sites. Define incremental goals for each metric.

3. Which financial websites tend to have the highest domain authorities?

Generally, top media outlets (Forbes, Bloomberg, WSJ), government sites (.gov), many university resource pages (.edu), and mainstream publications (Business Insider, Forbes) rate highest.

4. Should Fintech companies focus on link building?

Absolutely. Fintechs face immense competition from incumbent players. Link building helps equal the playing field by increasing credibility and traffic to accelerate growth despite more limited marketing budgets early on.

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