SEO for Tech & SaaS companies - A Complete Guide
Search engine optimization (SEO) means optimizing your website to show up at the top of search engine results, such as Google, Bing, and Yahoo. Why is this important for tech and SaaS companies? Many of these companies, especially startups, rely on referrals or word of mouth for their initial leads. This is obviously not sustainable or stable long-term. Alternatively, companies may rely on paid ads or cold outreach. However, once these efforts stop, the lead flow stops with it.
The only way to guarantee your business a healthy, passive flow of inbound leads is by getting to the top of search results. If you get to the top, you could be attracting hundreds of thousands of visitors to your site per month, depending on the niche. And unlike paid ads or cold outreach, visitors from organic search are relatively warm because they are intentionally searching for your target keywords or relevant topics.
Here is a comprehensive guide on SEO for SaaS or tech businesses, and how they can get their websites to the top of Google as quickly as possible. SEO can be broken down into three core areas - content, technical SEO, and off page SEO. You need to optimize all three aspects in order to rank well on Google. Let's go over each one.
Content is king, and is the most important factor in SEO. If your website only has the standard pages (ie. home, platform, about, contact us), it is not going to rank well on Google. You need to be consistently producing relevant, valuable content, such as blogs, whitepapers, and press releases, to gain more 'real estate' in Google search listings and attract more organic traffic. We cannot stress enough the importance of pumping out new content regularly; if you don't, your Google rankings and organic traffic will remain stagnant.
What exactly is high SEO content? First and foremost, the content that you write has to be engaging, valuable, or informative. Users actually take time to read it and are inclined to check out your other pages as well. Time on site and pages per session are huge factors in the Google algorithm, so make sure your content attracts users to stay on your site for as long as possible.
Next, your content needs to have all the elements of our golden triad: high relevance, low difficulty, high volume. The content has to be highly relevant to your product or service, it has to be relatively easy for you to rank on Google (ie. There's relatively low competition for that topic or keyword), and there has to be a decent amount of people searching for this topic on Google. Read more about selecting topics and keywords here: How to do keyword research for SaaS and Tech companies?
Technical SEO is basically all the technical bits and pieces of your website that can impact your Google rankings. Technical SEO can be further broken down into three main aspects: page speed, metadata, and crawlability.
Make sure your page speed is lightning fast. If it takes 2 seconds to load, that's already too slow and equates to a poor user experience from Google's point of view. Usually, the main element that causes a slow load time in most websites is bulky 3rd party scripts, such as tracking pixels, popup apps, or chatbots. Deferring the load time of non-essential scripts can speed up your site's initial load speed by a few seconds.
Next, enable browser caching for the website. This basically allows users to save a snapshot of your website in their browser's memory so that when they visit again in the future, it can load faster. For WordPress, there are many free plugins that offer caching, and for Wix, caching is built in.
Additionally, minify your JS and CSS scripts, where applicable. Wordpress has many free minifying plugins, and Webflow has a built-in option to minify these scripts. Fininally, instead of using the traditional jpeg images, convert them to NextGen formats such as WebP, which Google favors.
Metadata is additional info in your HTML code that tells search engines more information about your page. This includes tags, meta descriptions, alt attributes, etc. Make sure all of these are optimized for Google standards. For example, make sure all your pages have meta descriptions and title tags. On Wordpress, you can install the free Yoast SEO plugin to edit and optimize the metadata of your pages. For Wix and Webflow, there are built-in capabilities to edit the metadata of pages.
Crawlability is basically how easy it is for Google to crawl through your site and index the information it needs. Make sure there are no broken links or images, 4xx errors, 5xx errors, broken JS/CSS scripts, and infinite redirects - these are the most common crawlability issues we've seen. Also, make sure your site is using https, as http is less secure and will be penalized by Google. Tools such as Ahrefs and SEMrush can scan and identify all the crawlability issues of your site. You can also use the free Google Search Console to see which pages are indexed, and which have crawlability issues.
Last but not least we have to focus on off-page SEO. This is basically Google's score of your authority or reputation online. In general, the more links from high quality sites that link back to your site, the higher your score - these links are called backlinks. In the past, you could pay marketing agencies to generate tons of backlinks for you. In today's age, this does not work. We repeat: this does not work, and you will get heavily penalized by Google for forcefully creating backlinks to your site. Here are some healthy ways to generate backlinks that positively impact SEO.
List in directories
The quickest way to increase your backlinks is to first list your company in reputable directories. High quality directories for tech and SaaS companies include Crunchbase, Capterra, and g2. Listing in local directories and incubators is also an easy way to increase your backlinks. Often, you can list your company on these directories for free.
Promote in social media
Another easy way to increase your backlinks is by sharing your content, such as blogs, whitepapers, and webinars, on social media. In terms of which social media platform to use, generally LinkedIn and Twitter work best for tech and B2B, whereas Facebook, Instagram, and Tiktok work better for B2C. This is not set in stone though, so feel free to try out all the platforms and determine which ones drive the most results for your business. Additionally, whenever you post a link, ask your team and your connections to reshare or retweet the post as soon as possible. This especially works for the LinkedIn and Twitter algorithm - the more shares and engagement your post gets in the first 24 hour window, the more likely the algorithm will promote your content in people's news feed.
Be a guest
The best way to generate the highest quality backlinks is to collaborate with other platforms. For example, you can write a guest post on a popular blog, or be a guest speaker on a podcast or webinar. Remember to request adding a link to your site in the published content, hence creating a backlink. Not only is this a good way to significantly bump up your off page SEO, but if the platform has a large and relevant audience, it's also a nice growth hack that leverages an existing audience to 'advertise' your business.
That covers the fundamentals of SEO for SaaS & Tech companies. If you haven't done any of these steps yet, we'd recommend first optimizing your website's design and user interface to be as slick and intuitive as possible, as the Google algorithm prioritizes user experience. Next, the key element that really helps your website grow in Google's rankings is content. Create more pages and content (and use low-difficulty keywords if you're just starting out), and publish consistently to have the most impact.
If you follow the above steps and adhere to Google's guidelines, slowly but surely you will start to grow your rankings on Google and attract more organic traffic. It can be an overwhelming amount of steps, so if your team doesn't have the time or capacity to handle SEO, we do all of this for you via our organic growth package at ASATA. We help you fix and optimize all SEO issues, and we have a dedicated writing team to write out the full blogs for your business. Book a discovery call today to learn more!