The Google Battle for Lending and SMB Finance KeywordsSeptember 14, 2017 | By: Sean Murray
The online lending battle is at least in part being fought online. Below is a chart of organic page 1 rankings in Google for some of the industry’s biggest players, banks, and the SBA. (Hat tip to Fundera and NerdWallet):
|Keywords||OnDeck||Kabbage||Fundera||Lending Club||NerdWallet||National Funding||Traditional Banks||SBA.gov|
|merchant cash advance||2||3||4||8|
|small business loans||2||3||5||7||1|
|business line of credit||3||2||11||1,4||6,7,8,9,10||5|
|fast business loan||1||4||2||5,6|
|business loan with bad credit||7||1||2||3|
The Top 10 Google Search Results for Merchant Cash Advance in February 2012 compared to now:
|February 2012||September 2017|
|Entrust Cash Advance||Fundera|
|Merchants Capital Access||NerdWallet|
|Merchant Resources International||Businessloans.com|
|American Finance Solutions||Bond Street|
|Bankcard Funding||National Funding|
|Rapid Capital Funding||CNN|
|Paramount Merchant Funding||CAN Capital|
The top result in 2012 is a great example of how much easier it was to game Google’s system back then. After achieving rank #1 for MCA and 300 other related keywords, MerchantCashInAdvance.com, which was just a lead generation site, sold for $75,000 in December 2011. The site was later clobbered by Google Penguin for black hat SEO and banished from visibility.
A major shift has obviously taken place over the last 5 and a half years. Is the search results game rigged to advance Google’s own interests? Three years ago I put forth my theory on that.
One thing that’s different between then and now is that Google now has 4 paid links above the organic search results as opposed to 3 and the paid links blend in more with the organic results. With the organic results pushed further down the page, they’re not as visible as they were five years ago.
Read my previous analyses on the industry’s search war over the years:
December 2015 Google Serves Low Blow to Merchant Cash Advance Seekers
March 2015 Google Culls Online Lenders – Pay or Else?
October 2014 Merchant Cash Advance SEO War Still Raging
August 2014 Six Signs Alternative Lending is Rigged: Do Lending Club and OnDeck have a helping hand?
October 2013 Google Penguin 2.1 takes swing at the MCA industry
December 2012 Is Google your only web strategy?
July 2012 The other 93% [of leads]
April 2012 The SEO war continues
February 2012 The SEO War for Merchant Cash Advance: The first story on this topicLast modified: September 14, 2017
Sean Murray is the founder of deBanked, an 11-year veteran of the merchant cash advance industry, a casual Lending Club and Prosper note investor, the co-founder of Daily Funder, an alternative lending speaker, consultant, writer, and enthusiast. Connect with me on LinkedIn or follow me on twitter.