Looking to get more out of your SEO? I mean you probably are if you landed on this article. Well hopefully I can help you out.
Whether you’re starting with SEO or just looking to get more out of it, I’ve put this checklist together to help your SaaS perform better when it comes to SEO. In this article, I’ve listed out the exact SEO checklist that I use for all of my SaaS clients. It’s worked time and time again and can be used for almost any SEO strategy.
Don’t want to read the whole article? I don’t blame you. Here’s the TL;DR checklist:
- Have You Researched Your Audience?
- Is Your Content Marketing Funnel Planned Out?
- Have You Covered Any Bottom of the Funnel Topics Yet?
- Is Your Content Product-Led
- Is Your Content Aligned With Search Intent?
- Is Your Content Genuinely Helpful?
- Have You Audited Your Existing Content for Quick Wins?
- Is Your Sitemap.XML Set Up?
- Is Your Robots.txt Set Up?
- Have You Pruned Any Dead Content?
- Have You Optimized Your Website for Conversions?
- Is Website Tracking Set Up?
- Is Google Search Console Set Up and Verified?
- Does Your Content Have Internal and External Links?
- Does Your Content Have Images and Videos?
- Have You Prioritized EEAT?
- Have You Prioritized YMYL?
- Are Your URLS Short and Contain the Target Keyword?
- Are Your Meta Descriptions and Title Tags Optimized?
- Have You Optimized Your Header Tags?
- Have You Optimized Your Body Content?
- Have You Fixed Any Broken Links On Your Site?
- Have You Looked Into Relevant Websites to Guest Post On?
- Have You Checked Whether Traffic Was Increasing or Decreasing YoY?
- Can Search Engines Discover Your Content?
- Can Search Engines Crawl Your Content?
- Can Search Engines Index Your Content
- Can Search Engines Render Your Content?
- Is Your Website Usable for Mobile Users?
- Are There Any Page Speed or Load Speed Issues?
- Is The Site Using HTTPS?
- Is There Duplicate Content On The Website?
- Are There Any Instances of Content Cannibalization?
- Are There Any Redirect Issues?
- Can You Find Any Unlinked Mentions of Your SaaS?
- Have You Copied Any Of Your Competitor’s Content?
- Is Your Content Focused on Information Gain Score and Not Word Count?
- Have You Included Internal Links From Other Pages?
- Is Your Website Marked Up With Schema?
- Have You Optimized For Semantically Related Entities?
- Have You Tried Media Placements with HARO, Help a B2B Writer, Qwouted, and Featured?
- Do You Have The Necessary Tech Stack? Ahrefs/SEMrush, Screaming Frog, Surfer/Frase/Clearscope?
- Have You Fixed Any Lingering On-Page SEO Issues (Missing Alt Text, Missing H1s, Orphan Pages)
- Have You Performed a Competitor Analysis?
Things to Know Before You Get Started With Your SEO
Before you start with SEO, there are a few things you’ll need to know before you get started.
Set Up Google Search Console and Bing Webmaster
Before you even get started with SEO, you need to have Google Search Console and Bing Webmasters set up for your website or domain.
This is almost non-negotiable. Both Google Search Console and Bing Webmaster can help you measure your performance, find long tail keywords, and show whether your pages are being indexed by search engines or not.
Set Up Google Analytics
Like Google Search Console, Google Analytics will allow you to track almost every aspect of your SaaS marketing strategy. You use it to benchmark KPIs and track how many conversions/events are being completed from the SEO side of your marketing strategy.
You can even integrate Google Search Console with Google Analytics to access even more data. GSC has a row limit of 1,000, which can be limiting for some campaigns.
Install Some Kind of SEO Plugin
Another SEO item you’ll need before you get started is an SEO plugin for your website, assuming you’re using WordPress. Yoast will almost always come pre-installed onto your version of WordPress, but you’ll want to replace that plugin with RankMath.
From the 100s of websites I’ve audited, Rank Math is easily the best tool out there. Pretty much all of the features that are included in the paid version of Yoast are given away for free on RankMath. Plus, I find it is a more user-friendly tool for setting up website basics like schema and your sitemap.xml.
I always recommend it over Yoast.
And Here’s The SaaS SEO Checklist You Came Here For
Now that you have your basics set up, let’s dive into the actual SEO checklist. You can go down this checklist in whatever order, but make sure to include each one. Every tactic matters when it comes to doing effective SEO for your SaaS.
Always Start with Audience Research
If you want SEO to work for your SaaS, you have to start with audience research. This stage in the SEO process is particularly important for SaaS companies whose customers have higher purchasing intents. It’s not like a restaurant where they’ll immediately become aware of you and then choose to select your business. Your target audience likely has an entire buyer’s journey they follow before they come to the decision to purchase your product.
In some SaaS spaces, it’s fairly common for users to go from discovery to purchase, while others have to go through numerous touchpoints before considering your brand. And that’s assuming that other marketing channels are involved too.
Having an effective SEO strategy, and really marketing too, all starts with audience research and knowing the right decision-makers to target. You can interview your current customers for feedback, research customer reviews of other SaaS products, or you can join sales/product demo calls to uncover pain points from prospective customers.
Once your ICP is set, you can start the process of building out your marketing funnel and creating a content roadmap. Your content roadmap will help keep your SEO on track and keep your content topic-focused.
Have Your Marketing Funnel Set
While this checklist is more SEO-tactic focused, your overall SEO and content strategy needs to be organized and planned for all these tactics to work. While these tactics may help with organic traffic increases, they won’t do much to add any value toward revenue growth. If you want to drive recurring revenue for your SaaS and grow your brand with SEO, you have to target the right people and the right topics.
The marketing funnel will be your guiding template for how you build out and prioritize content. Whether you’re capturing your audience with top of the funnel content or converting them with bottom of the funnel content, your SEO does not start until you have your marketing funnel built out and your audience identified.
Start with the Bottom of the Funnel First, Then Work Your Way Up
If you want to increase the impact SEO has on your recurring revenue and subscriber count, always start with content at the bottom of the funnel. No matter the buyers’ journey your audience takes, they will go through some buyer’s journey that involves multiple other marketing channels rather than just SEO. So when you start with bottom of the funnel content, you have a chance to convert your audience when they’re at the point of conversion or close to the point of conversion.
Regardless of your SEO efforts, your target audience will end up at the bottom of the funnel – likely influenced by other marketing channels and maybe even sales – so now is your chance to capture them through organic search and persuade them to sign up for your SaaS. You need to create high-value content for this stage.
Alright, now with the SEO strategy elements out of the way, let’s get into the actual SaaS SEO checklist you came here for.
On-Page SEO Checklist
Use Your Audience Research for Keyword Research
Now that you have your ICP and marketing funnel set, you can now use this to inform your keyword research strategy.
Keyword research is the process of identifying how your audience is searching for relevant queries along their buyer’s journey and creating content to rank for that query and capture their click. You should think of your main keyword as a topic, rather than just a search term. If someone were to search for “continuing education,” would they be looking for EdTech SaaS solutions or the importance of continuing education.
While this isn’t a direct SEO tip, it will still guide how your audience finds your content.
This will also guide how you optimize your content. What you’ll use in your copy, how you’ll optimize your title tags and headers, and match the search intent.
Align Content With Search Intent
Search intent is a factor in SEO that gauges whether your content is relevant to the searcher and matches the intent of what they were looking for. And how is relevance decided? You reverse engineer the SERPs to find what Google thinks is relevant to match the search intent. Search intent is one of those ranking signals you can’t miss. If your content is misaligned on search intent, your content is going to struggle to rank and get any organic visibility.
So before you create your content, you need to know what you’re creating content around in order for it to rank. Let’s say, for instance, you’re building out a service page around the keyword “project management tool.”. So now you’ll want to scan the SERPs to determine the intent behind that search.
If you search for “project management tools” and find out that all the results show comparison pages, your page will struggle to rank since it doesn’t meet the proper intent.
Now, if you do that same search and find that service pages and comparison posts are ranking for that keyword, then you would have the go-ahead to create that content. Just know the SERPs will now be more competitive since you are only fighting for a small section of visibility since fewer ranking positions are available for your service page.
There are 4 main different types of intent you need to know:
- Transactional Search Intent – Transactional keywords denote a user’s immediate desire to complete a specific action online, often involving a purchase or sign-up. It is epitomized by organic search terms that directly indicate an intent to transact, such as “buy,” “order,” or “sign up for”
- Informational – Informational keywords will likely be blog posts that are top of the funnel. You’re not looking to purchase anything here; you’re just looking to find out more information about a particular topic
- Commercial – Commercial search intent refers to a user’s intention to make a purchase or explore buying options when conducting a search query online. It is characterized by keywords that suggest comparison, product reviews, or a direct intent to buy
- Navigational – This intent means to find pages from a specific website. Ex: Searches for shoes on Nike’s website
Use Internal and External Links in Your Content
You’ll want to include internal and external links in your content. Not only do internal links help distribute PageRank across your website, but external links also convey to search engines that your content is trustworthy and well-researched.
If you’re creating content that requires expert insights, having citations to trusted websites can signal to Google that you did your research with this content and that it is likely trustworthy. A big part of EEAT.
Not only this, but internal links also help search engines interact with your website better. Internal links make it easier for search engines to discover pages that might’ve been difficult for them to reach.
While there’s no set number to the amount of links you should have on a page, every rankable page on your website should have at least one internal link pointing toward it, and all of your pages should have a crawl depth of less than 3.
This means reducing the number of clicks search engines have to take to get to that page, starting from the home page.
Use Images and Videos to Break Up Walls Of Text
Don’t just post blocks of text with your content; break up your content with images and videos that make your content more interactive.
As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words. And especially for complex SaaS solutions, images can make the difference for your audience, who might struggle to read through your 2,000-word article.
Search engines also love user experience factors, so having more media on your page will help your content stand out more and rank better. But don’t just publish random stock photos just to have them in your content; spend time creating custom images that elevate your content.
Once again, search engines can recognize the difference between stock photos and unique images, so you’ll usually be rewarded for going the additional mile.
Especially in the case of your visual content, they can appear on the SERPs and image search, and if they are unique and eye-catching, they’ll also attract some clicks as well.
But that means you have to optimize your images as well. You need to compress their file sizes so they don’t affect page speed, and you need to optimize your images as well. This means including relevant keywords in the file name and alt text.
Focus on EEAT
Regardless of your industry, you should focus on Google’s content quality guidelines, also known as expertise, experience, authority, and trustworthiness.
- Expertise – showing you have the proper knowledge to be talking about this subject
- Experience – you have the experience in your resume to back up your authority
- Authority – proving to search engines that you are an authority on this topic. This is usually both site authority (backlinks – domain authority) and topical authority (content coverage)
- Trustworthiness – is the content you’re creating trustworthy for others. Are you citing your sources? Is the rest of your content helpful? Did you research your topic before writing about it?
While there’s no score or calculation for EEAT, this is just a way for Google to guide website owners on creating better content that Google will likely favor, especially in the case of your money or your life industries (YMYL), where the guidelines on content creation might be a little blurry.
So, if your SaaS operates in health or finance niches, you’ll want to add EEAT to your SEO checklist. Even if your SaaS doesn’t fall under YMYL, you should still consider EEAT in some form.
Don’t Forget About YMYL Either
While YMYL won’t apply to every SaaS company, this is still something that shouldn’t be ignored. While EEAT factors into YMYL, YMYL is more of a necessity for industries that sell products or provide services or information that can impact users’ happiness, health, financial stability, or safety.
Here’s a quote from Google’s own John Mueller about medical YMYL:
“I don’t think there is a straightforward approach to that. And I think especially when it comes to medical content, I think that’s super important that our algorithms are very picky there with regards to what we show. So, I would look at the quality rater guidelines and really think about how your site might be perceived by the quality raters.
The quality raters don’t make the algorithms, but they give us much insight into what we might do in our algorithms. So I would strongly recommend going through that. And I think it’s especially true when it comes to these kinds of sites; it’s less about the tactics and more about making sure that it is a legitimate business and that it’s backed up by appropriate, trustworthy sources.
So not just high-quality content, and doing all of this syndication, all of these things. But making sure that it’s written by a doctor, it’s created by legitimate medical professionals in their field.”
So, while EEAT is more of a base guideline to follow, your SaaS SEO campaign must consider YMYL to avoid devaluing your content. YMYL boils down to making content that will help, not hurt people.
Especially considering Google’s recent helpful content update, which is a sitewide signal, having hurtful content on one page of your website could impact content on the rest of your website. So, simply put, one unhelpful page on your website could devalue the rest of your site.
Make Your URLs Short and Include Your Target Keyword
Coming back to the actual SEO checklist optimizations, you want to optimize your URLs as well. This means keeping them relevant to the page and including your target keyword in them. Ideally, they should be short and to the point as well. In the case of my own article, I’ll likely have it be /saas-seo-checklist/ rather than /the-only-saas-seo-checklist-you-need/.
Optimize your Meta Description and Title Tags
Some on-page elements you’ll want to add to your SEO checklist is to optimize your title tags and meta descriptions. Your meta description and title tag are usually the first thing searchers see on the SERPs, so you’ll want to leave a good first impression. Title tags are also a strong ranking signal, so be sure to optimize them with your target keyword.
Even better if you can keep your target keyword close to the start of your title tag. While meta descriptions might not be ranking factors, you’ll still want to optimize them because Google will highlight them when users search for their query. Not to mention that your meta description can influence how a user clicks on your page.
I will be honest, though: for most SaaS websites, meta descriptions won’t be as much of a priority as other tasks. However, you can still find some solid opportunities by using Google Search Console to find quick-win opportunities, like finding keywords that are ranking on page 1 but aren’t getting any clicks. Then you can update the meta description to increase the likelihood of a searcher clicking on your result.
However, I should mention that meta descriptions get changed by Google around 70% of the time, so you’ll want to add this to the bottom of your SEO checklist.
Your title tag is where you’ll want to prioritize the most. Not only because it is one of the most powerful ranking factors, but it’s also one of the first things users see when they’re performing their search. So you have to blend your small title tag with your keywords, a strong CTA, and match their search intent.
For such a small space of text, it’s a lot of work. Another thing I should mention is that your title tag doesn’t need your brand name either. Google automatically shows that on the SERPs, so you can remove your brand name from the title tag and use that additional real estate to add more keywords or include a better CTA.
Optimize your Header Tags
Your HTML headers are actually ranking signals and are powerful ones at that. Your H1 is a huge ranking factor for search engines (usually since they are one of the first elements to appear for search engines), so your headers should be optimized with your primary and secondary keywords. This doesn’t mean you should keyword stuff your entire article. Actually, please don’t, as keyword stuffing is a negative SEO factor, but just find opportunities to include your keywords naturally within your headers.
Don’t Just Copy Competitors’ Content
You have to be original with your SaaS content. It can’t just be a direct replica of what’s already ranking. While it is important to review the top results to get an idea of intent and relevancy, you still need to focus on creating content that isn’t just copied and pasted.
You need to think about it from Google’s perspective; why would they rank your content over the competition when it is the exact same as what’s already out there? Focus on information gain score and providing value to your target audience. Value that’s coming from expertise that only you have access to. EEAT comes pretty naturally here.
Focus on Information Gain Score, Not Word Count
Focus on information gain score, not word count. There’s a myth in SEO that word count is a strong ranking signal that search engines use to rank content.
It’s an understandable myth but one that’s been disproven over and over again. Even John Mueller said:
“Word count is not a sign that a page is thin content. You’re the expert on your site’s topic (or you should be), and you can make a qualified call on what’s helpful for users and what’s fluff. Don’t use word count.”
But the reason why this word count myth is understandable is because long-form content usually ranks better than short-form content. But that’s not because of the words being used; it’s just because long-form content tends to be more comprehensive, whereas short-form content tends to be thin. But here’s where people go wrong. They think that now means they have to stuff their content with fluff for their content to rank.
And again, while relevancy and information gain score have to be established, that doesn’t mean adding additional content or words that aren’t relevant to the topic. In fact, with all of the backlash of SEO content (and how users are now flocking to Reddit for answers), we may see condensed content skyrocket in terms of value.
This means packed and comprehensive content but does it in a short, descriptive, and clear way. This is a hope for me and many others, but only time will tell with that.
Add Internal Links From Other Relevant Articles and Pages
In addition to having internal links in your content, you should also have internal links pointing to your pages from other pages on your website as well.
This not only helps search engines understand the connection between these pages but it also helps establish topical authority for your website, which shows to search engines that you are a trusted source of information on your topic.
The more knowledge you demonstrate over a specific topic, the more trustworthy you appear to search engines. As you can probably guess with my own website, I’m in the process of building out topical authority around SaaS SEO.
So, I have my pillar page, which is about creating a SaaS SEO strategy, and all of my supporting content talks about specific aspects of SaaS SEO. And guess what? I just used this opportunity to establish internal linking between my pillar pages. It’s a linkception.
But in all seriousness, internal links are often underutilized, especially when they are one of the most powerful on-page SEO tactics.
Add Schema Markup to Your Pages
You should also be adding schema markup to your pages as well. Schema is a coding language created specifically for search engines. They use this language to better understand the content you have on your website. You can even use schema to earn rich results for your website.
This can be review or software schema, or it could be organization schema, which helps search engines better understand your SaaS/company.
We also had FAQ and how-to schema, but Google recently sunsetted those.
Optimize for Entities, Not Just Keywords
Now, this is the part of the SEO checklist that will separate yourself from the competition.
Remember how keyword stuffing is bad? Well, this is the alternative to fight against keyword stuffing. Instead of stuffing your page with your primary keyword over and over again (which used to work back in the early to mid-2000s), now we focus on entities, which are terms, places, things, and people that help search engines better understand your content.
As I mentioned, Google’s algorithm used to prioritize keyword stuffing, but now their algorithm focuses on natural language processing to understand the words being used on a page.
That’s how they can determine what’s quality content and what’s not. But in the case of entities, these help search engines better categorize your content and measure the relevancy of your content to the topic.
For a deep dive into entities, I recommend reading this article to get a better understanding of entity SEO. But to optimize your content for entities, you’d basically be finding entities that align with your overall topic and adding them into your content.
In the case of a SaaS, let’s say your solution is a project management tool; in addition to your target keyword, which is “project management tool,” you’ll want to include other entities like “project management” “managing projects,” “project managers,” “operations.”
Basically, any terms you can think of that help search engines better understand your content and improve the relevancy of your content to that topic. It also proves expertise as well; a person who knows project management tactics will be able to talk descriptively about it, and with entities, that’s Google’s way of measuring that you know what you’re talking about.
But if you know your topic well, these entities will likely end up in your content naturally. I recommend using tools like Surfer, Clearscope, and Frase to help guide you when you’re optimizing for entities. And then use Google’s natural language API to see how your content is being interpreted.
Optimize Your Body Content
Lastly, we’ll have our body content. By now, you should have your keywords, internal links, external links, entities, images, videos, etc. all set for your article.
Now, you just need to go through the process of optimizing your content. You’ll just need to add all of the above without impacting your article’s readability and natural flow.
While keyword density is also a myth, you’ll still want to find opportunities to add your keyword naturally.
And if your content has been live for some time, you can use Google Search Console to find which keywords are associated with that page.
Have Your Technical SEO Set in Place
You probably thought that was that for your SaaS SEO checklist, but we have much more to cover. The above on-page SEO checklist should be enough if content is your main priority.
However, technical SEO is a foundational element of SEO, and neglecting it could impact how your content performs. So, if you want more items to include in your SaaS SEO checklist, I recommend reading on to find which technical SEO issues you should prioritize.
Make Sure Search Engines Can Discover Your Content
Your content has to be discoverable for search engines for it to rank. You’ll see me mention this a lot, but for content to rank, it follows a process of discovery > crawling > indexing > rendering. If that process falls anywhere along the way, your content won’t rank at all.
So, with discovery, you need to make it easy for search engines to discover all of the indexable pages on your website. This means having your sitemap.xml set, so search engines can find pages they should be crawling. As mentioned earlier, you should also be setting up internal links for all your pages so none are considered orphans.
Meaning search engines can’t find them anywhere outside of the sitemap. In addition to a sitemap.xml, you can also create an HTML sitemap, which helps with discovery.
You can also look in Google Search Console to see which pages are being marked as discovered currently not indexed.
This is the coverage report issue you’ll likely want to focus on the most. Discovered, currently not indexed means Google knows that content exists on your website, but they just haven’t crawled it yet.
This means your page is basically sitting in purgatory until it gets crawled. In most cases with discovered currently not indexed, if you add more internal links, improve the content quality, and request the page to be indexed, it will likely fix the issue for you.
You just need to keep trying until you get that page indexed.
Make Sure Search Engines Can Crawl Your Content
Moving along the line, we now have crawling. This is the process of search engines actually crawling your page and deciding whether the content should be included in their index or not.
And you can only control how search engines crawl your website in one way, through the robots.txt file.
This file can set directives to prevent search engines from crawling certain areas of your website. It follows a subfolder path too, so if I included https://www.taylorscherseo.com/saas-seo/ in my robots.txt, then this page wouldn’t be crawled.
But outside of your robots.txt, crawling issues usually come down to search engines. Sometimes, it is a crawl budget or crawl error issue; other times, search engines decide to pass over a page since they deem it low quality. In this case, the search engine decided to use their crawling resources for other pages.
Whatever the crawling issue is, you want to fix it so search engines can properly crawl and index your content.
Even in Google Search Console, you can use their crawl stats tool to see how Google is interacting with your website. You can see what they’re crawling, how they crawl, and when they crawl.
Make Sure Search Engines Can Index Your Content
This will be your holy grail of SEO. If search engines can’t index your content for whatever reason, it will have 0 visibility.
And luckily, both Bing Webmasters and Google Search Console will explain why your content isn’t being indexed. Usually found in the coverage report.
As mentioned, the most common indexing issues will be discovered and crawled, not currently indexed, which typically results from poor content quality.
There are other reasons, but content quality is a big one. But, monitoring the coverage report should be a main item on your SaaS SEO checklist.
Make Sure Search Engines Can Render Your Content
You can use Google’s live test tool to test how your content is being rendered, or you can use the rendering tool from technicalseo.com.
Make Sure Your Website is Usable for Mobile Users
Mobile usability is now a significant factor in how search engines gauge the quality of your UX.
With over half of all website traffic coming from mobile devices, search engines are setting the tone for websites that don’t prioritize mobile usability.
And for a good reason too, if the majority of website users are coming from mobile, why would they want to rank a page that isn’t optimized for their searchers?
You should also consider the same question for your users too: why would a user consider your SaaS if their first impression of your brand is not being able to read your content? First impressions matter, so make sure your website works for mobile users. Google also has a mobile-friendly test that you can use for your website.
Check That There’s No Issues With Your Websites Page Speed and Load Speed
Like mobile usability, page speed is another user experience ranking signal Google considers when evaluating page quality. While it isn’t a significant ranking signal, your website’s loading speed still can impact your website, especially when you’re trying to reach that top 3 spot on the SERPs. And don’t prioritize load speed only because it helps with SEO. It should be prioritized for your readers, not search engines.
That’s pretty much the reason why Google has these user experience ranking signals in the first place; what’s good for the user is also good for search engines.
And they’ll reward you accordingly. So if your website has a poor user experience, you’re not just hurting your SEO; you’re leaving a bad first impression for potential customers.
If you want to test your website’s page speed, Google has a free PageSpeed Insights tool that measures user experience on both the mobile and desktop versions of your website.
Make Sure You’re Using HTTPS
A one-and-done tactic you’ll want to include in your checklist is to update your website to HTTPS. HTTPS (HyperText Transfer Protocol Secure) encrypts the data exchanged between a user’s browser and the web server, ensuring that any sensitive information, such as login credentials, payment details, or personal user data, is protected from potential attacks.
Since SaaS platforms often handle substantial business-critical or personal data, the security and integrity of this data are non-negotiable.
In fact, search engines, led by Google, have started using HTTPS as a ranking factor, meaning SaaS websites without HTTPS could perform worse in the search results.
Check for Duplicate Content
You’ll also want to check for duplicate content on your website. If you do have duplicate content, say in the form of parameter URLs or pagination, you’ll want to have a proper canonical tag strategy set in place.
If you have duplicate content, either set your canonical tag to be self-referencing or delete and merge the page into the original.
Look Out For Content Cannibalization
If you’re creating content at scale for your SaaS, you likely have some content that’s targeting similar search intents, leading to keyword cannibalization issues.
Cannibalization happens when you have 2 pages competing for the same keyword intent, which causes Google to pick one URL over the other. In most cases, Google will just devalue both of your pages.
To fix cannibalization, you need to identify the underperforming cannibalization page and merge it into the performing one. You can also reoptimize the page for a different intent.
Either way, I recommend auditing your SaaS content at least 1 a quarter to find opportunities to find content like this.
Fix Redirect Issues
Lastly for the technical SEO checklist, we have redirect issues. Common redirect issues like redirect chains and redirect loops impact how search engines crawl and rank your pages. You can use SEO tools like Ahrefs and Screaming Frog to find these issues.
Moving on to the third pillar of our SEO checklist, off-page SEO is the process of building high-quality backlinks from reputable and relevant websites.
Building backlinks will help your SaaS build site-wide authority, demonstrate trustworthiness (EEAT), and help your content rank better. You can imagine content as your fire and links as gasoline.
Look for Unlinked Mentions of your SaaS
One of the easiest low-hanging fruit opportunities for SaaS link building is unlinked brand mentions.
These are basically mentions of your team, SaaS, or data on other websites that never resulted in a link.
Since these websites have already mentioned you, they’re more likely to add in a link for you.
Just find the websites that mention you or your brand and then reach out asking if they’d be willing to attach a backlink using that anchor text.
Fix Broken Links
Another easy, low-hanging fruit on this checklist is to fix your broken links. These are links you’ve earned that point to 404 pages.
To fix them, all you need to do is redirect them to a live page. Just load up Ahrefs, find the pages on your website that link to broken pages and redirect them to another relevant page.
Look for Websites in your Industry to Guest Post On
Guest posting, as a SaaS company, can work to boost your brand’s awareness while also building authority for your site.
Rather than sending guest posts out to random websites (like a divorce lawyer posting on a bodybuilder website), you’ll want to focus on finding relevant websites in your industry that position your SaaS in front of the right eyes.
Get Media Placements with HARO, Help a B2B Writer, Qwouted, and Featured
You can also sign up for journalist request programs like HARO, Help a B2B writer, qeuoted, and featured.
These platforms make it easy for your SaaS to build links by offering expertise in exchange for a link. These platforms also run through email, so journalist queries can be sent to your inbox daily.
Conversion Rate Optimization
If you want SEO to work for your SaaS, you need to convince your website users to convert.
Whether that’s a product demo, lead magnet, or free trial, you need to find sections in your content where you can prompt users to take some kind of action. This doesn’t mean including a CTA at the bottom of your page either (although you should still do this); this means finding opportunities near the top of your page to include some kind of CTA, like a newsletter signup or free trial offer.
While in-body CTAs work, you’d probably have better luck including pop-ups in your content structure that prompt readers to take some kind of action.
Additional Tips to Help With Your SaaS SEO
Create a Decent SEO Tech Stack
If you want users to find your SaaS through organic, you’ll need a proper stack to help. You can read my article here on the best SaaS SEO tools, or you can read the next few sections to get a general idea of which SEO tools you’ll need.
Keyword Research Tools
While keyword research tools aren’t necessary, they will make your efforts more effective. After you have your audience data compiled, these keyword research tools will help you uncover how your audience searches and what they’re searching for. While you can use free tools like People Also Asked, and Autocomplete, tools like Ahrefs and SEMrush will make the process so much easier. Especially when you’re dealing with complex SaaS-related content. You can also use Google Search Console for keyword research too, but you’ll need to have access to the data first, which most websites don’t have.
Google Search Console
Google Search Console will be the most important SEO tool for your SaaS. Google Search Console is Google’s free tool that shows you everything you need to know about your SaaS and how it is performing organically. You can uncover things like:
- How people are searching for your SaaS solution
- What pain points your target audience has
- If your pages are being indexed
- If your schema is being read properly (and driving clicks)
No SEO checklist is complete without it. Every SaaS website should automatically install Google Search Console when they start this SEO checklist.
While marketing tools like optimization aren’t entirely necessary for SEO, they make the process significantly easier for SaaS content marketing teams who might be unfamiliar with SEO. These optimization tools will analyze the SERPs for you and give you all the data you need to rank for your target keyword.
They’ll recommend relevant keywords and entities to include, headers, image count, and internal links. If you’re familiar with SEO, then optimization tools aren’t entirely necessary, but if you’re new to SEO and just looking for some assistance optimizing your content, then they are invaluable.
Technical SEO Tools
While Google Search Console is generally enough for measuring tech SEO, you should also have at least one technical SEO tool in your stack. These tools will help automate your SaaS technical SEO audit and find things that Google Search Console can’t, like pages with a high crawl depth or broken links.
Screaming Frog is my personal favorite and will give you everything you could possibly need from an SEO tool, all for a very low cost.
Seems like a Lot Right? You Could Also Partner With a SaaS SEO Specialist Who Will Handle All of This For You
This SaaS SEO checklist should be enough to keep your strategy in check and effective. If you really want to level up your SEO strategy, I highly recommend looking into optimization tools; they’ll make the process so much easier for you.
If you need additional help, feel free to schedule an SEO strategy call with me. I’m an SEO consultant for SaaS companies, so I can help out if needed.