SEO for SaaS Startups

Seo for saas Startups

What’s cheaper than pay-per-click ads, converts better, and drives long-term results? SEO. What these three little letters stand for can revolutionize the way (and speed!) your SaaS startup is growing. And the best part is, the investment is much lower with longer-lasting effects than paid advertising.

Having a solid SEO for SaaS startups is the foundation to build your long-term marketing strategy. You can see increasingly better results in your leads, acquisitions, and conversion.

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization, and in this day and age, it’s essential for any SaaS startup. SEO helps increase organic search visibility, traffic volume, and consistent growth.

But what exactly is SEO for SaaS?

A short answer is, SEO is a way to ensure you appear – and stay – on top of organic search results. By using highly targeted keywords, you can create SEO-conscious, high-ranking content that will drive traffic to your website. It will also increase brand awareness and exposure and help build a large and loyal audience in the process.

SEO for SaaS includes:

  • Keyword research
  • Keyword-rich, evergreen content strategy
  • Backlink building
  • Content creation and distribution

Whether you embark on a mission to build SEO on your own or outsource it, the benefits far outweigh the investment, especially in terms of consistent, long-term results. But why is SEO so crucial, and how do you get started?

Why is SEO Important for a SaaS Startup?

Done strategically, SEO for SaaS startups can be a game-changer in exponential organic growth and scaling of the business.

Millions of organic online searches are being conducted every single day. Consumers actively seek out content that is relevant to them. In addition, people are far more likely to click on organic search results rather than ads. In fact, most people purposefully scroll past the paid ad results.

Quality content, on the other hand, is much more likely to draw and retain attention. Consumers readily click on blog posts, news articles, and white paper pages. By contrast, most people are reluctant to click on ads and ignore or block them altogether.

Even more importantly, SEO-conscious content doesn’t just drive traffic. It drives specific traffic. SEO-rich content attracts people who are:

  • Already looking for software you sell
  • Interested in the software you sell, or
  • Looking for information about it.

In other words, the traffic you gain from SEO-optimized content isn’t just quantity, it’s also quality – and that, in turn, increases conversion.

Finally, SEO for SaaS is a long-term solution. With paid ads, the traffic only lasts as long as the ads are active. Once the paid advertising stops, so does the volume of clicks. In addition, every single ad click will have its cost. With SEO, however, the gift keeps on giving, especially if your content is evergreen or regularly updated – and you only pay for the content creation once.

The Advantage of SEO for SaaS Startup

SEO for SaaS also has a fantastic side effect of increasing brand awareness, establishing expertise and authority in the relevant niche and building a loyal following. If you consistently produce high-ranking, quality content targeting specific keywords, your SaaS startup page will:

  • Routinely perform well in organic search results
  • Receive a high volume of targeted traffic
  • Get quality backlinks and referrals organically
  • Help establish your brand as the leading voice of authority in your industry or niche

This is because SEO-rich content will attract audiences who are actively seeking the information you put out. The more content on the relevant topics you produce, the more trustworthy and knowledgeable you’ll appear. As a result, your audience will keep growing, and leads will be more likely to convert.

Understanding SaaS Funnel

If like other SaaS startups, you have heavily relied on paid ads in the past, you may have noticed that ad clicks do not necessarily mean sales.

On the one hand, statistics show that people who have an intention of buying something will click on ads more readily. This, in theory, would mean that your ads should bring in willing customers. The issue here is that not all of these willing customers are looking to buy the software that you offer: often, the clicks can be random or accidental, and there is no guarantee of a sale. More importantly, ad clicks are fleeting and there is no attention retention. People click, take a look, then click off – and the customer journey ends.

However, this is where SEO truly shines. SEO-rich content helps create a reliable, scalable SaaS customer funnel. By creating highly targeted content, you attract people who are already looking for specific software, specific solutions to their problems, or specific information on relevant software solutions.

Once they consume the relevant content, they are more likely to drop down the funnel further by subscribing to your mailing list and following your social media channels, which makes them much more receptive to your offers down the line. Finally, once they are hooked by your content and sold on your newsletters, lead magnets, and other valuable freebies, they are much more likely to make a purchase.

This way, you don’t just grab people’s attention momentarily. Instead, you reel them in, keep them interested, get them engaged, and finally, convert.

SEO SaaS Strategy

SEO-rich content helps SaaS startups create an entire customer experience journey from interest to sale. Here is how it works:

1.     Identify the perfect customer

2.     Identify the customer’s most pressing pain points

3.     Run a thorough keyword research

4.     Create keyword-rich, targeted content

5.     Enjoy increased traffic volume, new leads, and increased conversion rates

For the sake of an example, let’s say you offer an online design app that allows people to create infographics, social media ads, presentations, and the like. Your perfect customer may be a marketing creative looking for quick, simple ways of creating visuals on the go. Their main pain point is that creating quality visuals without a background in graphic design is time-consuming and complex. Your online design app is the solution; however, people who are looking for the answer to their problem may not know that your app exists.

Because of this, your keyword research shouldn’t be focused on generic keywords like “design app” or “online graphic design”, but rather, cast a more specific net and research long-tailed keywords like “easy ways to create marketing infographics”. Once you’ve identified the best-performing keywords, create content that answers those specific questions, and you will attract your target audience: marketing professionals on the lookout for easy-to-use, quick design solutions.

The Best Part about SEO SaaS Strategy

The best part about the SEO SaaS strategy is that you can create multi-layered SEO for your SaaS. It doesn’t have to be just one customer persona and just one problem: depending on the specifics of your SaaS startup, there may be multiple customer profiles, multiple pain points they are looking to solve, and multiple pieces of content driving different traffic. In other words, SEO for SaaS can help you build several funnels, which helps grow and scale with virtually no limits.

In addition, there are endless opportunities to build several funnels to create an even more specific customer journey. Going back to the online design app example, once the basic funnel is created, you can then add another layer of SEO-rich content to direct people to your software. As the audience moves from content that helps them solve their graphic design challenges and educates them on the topic, it’s time to create another funnel with keywords related to the specifics of the software you sell. These can be specific features of the software, pricing structure, comparisons with other software, customer reviews, and the like.

The key is to create user experiences and customer journeys directing them through the funnel, and SEO-rich content is an excellent tool to achieve this.

3 Reasons Why Every SaaS Company Needs to Invest in SEO

In addition to being an excellent source of high-quality traffic, search engine optimization is an important part of a company’s marketing strategy. Marketing isn’t the same as advertising: paid ads are all about short-term, instant-gratification sales results. Marketing, on the other hand, is a process of creating the space for the product or service, educating potential customers, and creating a need for the product or service offered. In other words, marketing is all about the long game – and that’s why SEO should be a big part of it.

SEO Provides ROI

SEO takes time. To rank well in the search results, earn domain authority, and build backlinks, you’ll need to be armed with patience – none of this happens overnight.

However, good SEO has a cumulative effect. Once your content starts performing well, it begins a snowball effect where the more traffic you get, the more traffic you get: attracting a high volume of traffic helps increase the rankings, and better rankings drive even more traffic. Once again, the ROI may not be as instant as paid ads, but in the long term, it is significantly cheaper and more effective.

In addition, SEO can help boost the performance of your ads, and your ads can help your SEO: using both in the right measure is a great strategy.

Another great aspect of SEO is that it has very tangible metrics you can track and evaluate. The ROI is not vague: you can track your data, compare results, and tweak your SEO strategy accordingly to achieve better and better results. Numbers don’t lie, and SEO strategies make it easy to pinpoint areas that can be improved.

The Demand is High and Growing

Some SaaS startups are cautious of SEO-rich content thinking the web is already over-saturated. While it’s true that the amount of online content created and published daily has exploded to unimaginable heights, the demand for highly specific content is growing exponentially. More and more, people are pressed for time and simply cannot afford to sift through vast amounts of content that is too basic, too vague, or too general. Instead, they are looking for specific solutions to specific problems, and search engines are getting better and better at accommodating this need.

Going back to the design app example, there may be tons of generic content out there talking about the basics of design. However, as a SaaS startup offering an online design app, you aren’t targeting the masses with a vague interest in design. Instead, the target is marketing professionals who are looking for easy, quick design solutions helping them create beautiful visuals without spending lots of time on online design courses or learning to use complex design programs. If you can create SEO-rich content catering to these specific people and their specific needs, you’ll hit the jackpot – and the hundreds of generic graphic design pages will not be competition but rather, an excellent backdrop to stand out from the crowd.

SEO for SaaS Builds the Foundation

Aside from being a tool to drive traffic, SEO is, in many ways, foundational. SEO can influence several key growth areas for your SaaS startup including:

  • Traffic and funnels
  • Marketing
  • Visibility
  • Building and retaining a large, loyal customer base

If you’re going to invest in SEO strategy, it shouldn’t be solely focused on search engine rankings and traffic volume. It can inform and shape the marketing strategy, too: good SEO practices help boost and add value to marketing campaigns by specific, relevant targeting and content.

Done right, SEO increases the visibility and exposure of your SaaS startup and helps establish you as the industry expert. Finally, SEO helps build and maintain an ever-growing base of loyal, engaged customers coming back for more over and over again.

In other words, SEO for SaaS is a crucial piece of the puzzle – and it’s never too late to get started.

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