Build your site around real people and what they really do.

CUs: people are searching for you, not your products

Here’s a remarkable little fact about organic search that is specific to credit union websites:

Well over 99% of the clicks coming from organic search are simply variations on the credit union’s name.

(For example, “ABC Credit Union”, “ABCFCU”, or “ABC CU”.)

In other words, people who find credit union web sites via search are very consistently searching specifically for that credit union, not the credit union’s products. They’re looking for ABC CU, but almost never something like “car loans” or “credit card Anytown USA”.

If the credit union has recently changed names, the old name will show up for a few years afterwards. Or if the credit union has an ambiguous name (for example, there are at least four or five “BEFCUs” in the US), the city might show up as well.

Another factor is that most browsers automatically start showing search options as soon as you start to type a few letters. This makes search even easier, especially on mobile devices.

The lesson here is that you have to look at what people are really looking for, before you optimize your site around what you wish they were searching for.

Above all else, make sure you’re easy to find and identify, address any potential confusion, and continue to drive demand with online and offline marketing. Build your site around real people and what they really do.

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