SaaS is already a saturated market.
According to a recent report from Crunchbase, there are almost 15,500 SaaS companies launched in the year 2020 alone.
This means if your SaaS has to stand a chance in this stifling competition, your customer acquisition model needs to be profound and growth-focused. Simply putting up with SEO will not do the work.
But developing a backlink strategy that is laser-focused on growth for your specific industry is hard. But fret not. We have got your back.
In this post, we will reveal the best SEO practices to get high-value backlinks for your online content that your audience loves to read and share. By the end of this post, you will know exactly how the top-performing SaaS companies growth-hack their systems and how you can do it too for your startup.
9 Ways To Boost Your SaaS SEO With Backlinks In 2021
Knowing what goes into making a link-worthy content piece is always a good starting point for developing a backlink strategy that can produce results recurrently. To put it in simple words, it is content that your industry authority and audience loves spending their valuable time on—this school down to two key attributes that make content stand out.
- Uniqueness: Developing one-of-a-kind content always stands out in the crowd. Thus, creating cornerstone content focusing on thought leadership, opinion pieces, and value-driven content is so valuable. In short, if your content is so unique that there are hardly any other content pieces that offer similar insights, it is going to generate a lot of backlinks recurrently over some time.
- Value: Useful content is another feature of a viral content piece that people link to now and then. These content pieces often adopt a comprehensive framework to answer one question from all the facets. Studies, guides, and tools are a few popular content in this niche. In short, for any content piece that is actionable and can yield results, you will see a surge in inbound links.
So now, when you know what triggers backlinks from your audience, let’s take a look at the top SaaS link-building strategies of 2021.
- Create content resources to generate backlink
Creating a content asset designed to go viral often displays features like actionable insights and comprehensive guides on a topic — usually, these content pieces twin as a backlink generator and a lead magnet at the same time.
Free tools, surveys, comprehensive guides, and list posts are the best examples of this type of content. Other blogs in your industry love to promote such resources. This means the real work in this strategy lies in building quality content that is market savvy and catered towards your target audience. The only task left for you to do after the content development is to promote the content to channels that are heavy on curation. The core idea of this strategy is to create content that curation sites can link to for engaging their audience.
- Become a guest posting ninja
Although ‘guest posting’ has been an optimized channel of brand awareness and growth by now, it is still powerful for any young blog. The only difference is you have to be more strategic than anyone else. Instead of focusing on guest posting on channels with multi-faced expertise, opt for high authority channels with complementary expertise. This will take a little bit of research for you. Find out the topics on which the channel has the maximum high-performing guest posts and the thinnest layers of content contribution.
Now go one step deeper in creating content around topics that aren’t the most comprehensive. You will add value to both the channel and its audience equally. This strategy can successively strengthen your brand and earn referral traffic recurrently.
- Utilize knowledge base to automate backlink generation
If you think that your knowledge base is just meant for your startup stakeholders: developers, marketers, and end-customers think again. Transforming your knowledge base into an open-access encyclopedia around topics of your products and services can not only gain you a sustainable audience and brand name but get numerous backlink opportunities through time. But this is easier said than done.
The typical knowledge base of a SaaS startup that twins as a backlink generator are often more fun, engaging and varied in topics than traditional FAQ books. Mix your knowledge base with topic clusters that educate your end-users on how to use your product, along with the topics that focus on discussions about alleviating their pain points.
- Use broken links to generate backlinks
Broken links can be your entry ticket in building sustainable relationships with authority channel influencers. Creating posts that can bridge any knowledge gap created because of this dead link can help the blog owners you are reaching out to look good in front of their audience and also appear to be helpful. In doing so, you earn a backlink from the authority and a relationship. The core of link building from a broken link is to be helpful. You can witness a surge in your organic content rankings in a very short time.
- Use SaaS directories to spread the word
Your SaaS startup lives on the feedback currency. This means when your audience is deciding between you and your competitors, audience voice matters. Fortunately, today with so many SaaS directories at your bay, you can get higher exposure and backlink equity faster than before. Capterra and G2 Crowd are two great choices to start with.
- Use sponsored content to get backlinks
No matter which industry you are operating in, influencers are a huge asset for getting your new audience. Sponsoring your influencers’ content is one of the advanced strategies that you can adapt to while doing this. By sponsoring an influencer’s post, you not only get an opportunity to acquire their loyal fanbase but get into the good books of the influencer too. But this cannot be done with only monetary transactions. Building authentic relationships with the influencer is the long-term strategy to give you high-quality backlinks over time here. Whatever you do here, everything boils down to how helpful you are to the influencer and its community.
- Optimize the power of public discussion forums
No matter what industry you are in, the key to success always lies with the audience. If your audience thinks you are cool, you are, but if you fail to impress them, you are as good as non-existing. This makes public opinion forums like Quora, Answerthepublic, Reddit groups, and Facebook groups vital in creating a reputation. But as you are a SaaS startup, you can take this to a new level. Get into the habit of registering your company in SaaS directories. Product Hunt is a great tool to do this. You can get the attention of a specific target audience and understand where your product is performing and what needs to be updated fast.
- Network with indirect competitors
If you have to sustain in a competitive market like that of a SaaS industry, having more friends than enemies is a rule of thumb. This makes partnering and networking with brands and companies that complement your products and services critical. But let’s have a clear understanding of what we mean here. Your content creation process should primarily focus on alleviating your target audience’s pain problems. Salesy promotions will never lead to any positive results, neither for you nor for your indirect competitors’ business. But whenever there is contextual relevance and genuinely feel that their product can help your audience resolve their pain points, take the opportunity to link to them.
- Take advantage of powerful tools for extra mileage
If there is one tool that you cannot miss using for your backlink generation, it is HARO. It is one of the best ways to get new eyeballs on your blog posts from high authority news sites like Forbes, Huffington Post, Inc, and more. It is the cheapest method of digital PR that your SaaS blog can ever have. On successful sign-up, you will receive three emails a day from Mondays through Fridays from reporters actively searching for sources relevant to your startup needs. You can accept requests from these reporters based on what fits your context most and respond to them accordingly.
However, to make this a success, you need to be aware of the value you create for the news site’s audience. Only then can you gain the desired authority and credentials that you are looking for.
The final verdict for building a rock-solid SEO strategy that incurs high-value backlinks for your SaaS startup is no rocket science. But that doesn’t make it completely simple. Slapping someone else’s success recipe as your mantra will not give you an edge. Like your startup, your marketing strategy also needs to be unique. Sure, you can always take inspiration from your competitors and adapt to a broader top-performing strategy.
To ensure success, having authentic communication with your audience is key to unlocking your SaaS company’s true potential. Whatever you do, keep your audience at the heart of every step. This will give you insights specific to your community. Listen to your audience and build and create experiences that add value to them. You will see your success is closer than you think.
Atreyee Chowdhury works full-time as a Learning Experience Designer and a part-time writer. She has helped many small and medium-scale businesses achieve their content marketing goals with her carefully crafted content that is both informative and engaging. She lives in Bangalore, India with her husband. In her free time, she loves to read, experiment with different cuisines, travel, and explore the latest content marketing and L&D trends. You can reach her on Linkedin or write to her at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss your content marketing plans and requirements.