Enterprise SEO SaaS poses some unique challenges. From establishing thought leadership to stricter brand guidelines, limited customers, and a longer sales cycle, your work is cut out for you.
You’re on the right page, though.
This guide shows you actionable insights you can implement as soon as you stop reading this. We’ll take you each step of the way, show you the tools your marketing team can use, and highlight excellent examples from enterprise SaaS brands.
We’ll even assume a double personality at some point, so keep reading below.
Why Enterprise SaaS Brands Need SEO
Here are three reasons why you need a solid SEO strategy:
1. Long-Term Strategy
If you’re an enterprise SaaS brand, you know you have a larger marketing budget than your run-of-the-mill startup. And if you’re like similar companies in your niche, you invest a lot in paid ads.
But a long-term SEO strategy:
- Maintains brand awareness and recognition
- Keeps your existing customers loyal
- Increases a natural flow of organic traffic
2. Easier SaaS Adoption
Enterprise SaaS is different than conventional B2C SaaS because:
- Your audience invests more in research.
- Your software may have a steeper learning curve.
- You may use self-service customer support.
All that may increase your bounce rate, app uninstalls, and unsubscriptions.
Why? Because it’s tough to adopt new software if you don’t know how it works and lack the necessary support.
SEO for enterprise SaaS helps you on three levels:
- On-site SEO: High-quality content educates your prospects in an easy-to-grasp manner.
- Technical SEO: This part improves user experience, so potential customers interact better with your website and informational materials.
- Off-site SEO: You disseminate high-quality content at scale on other authoritative websites, bringing more value to your prospects.
All three dimensions have two other advantages:
- They help grow your reputation.
- You get more recommendations.
As such, the organic traffic tap keeps running even when your paid ads budget is lower.
3. Enterprise SaaS SEO Is Proven to Work
Enterprise SaaS SEO works just like other SEO.
- It helps you stand out from the competition as you start ranking for high-intent keywords (aka keywords your customers use when they search for solutions to their problems).
- You accelerate your customer acquisition efforts because you rank higher on search engines and build a reputation.
- You increase customer retention because more people/ companies remain loyal to your brand.
- Your omnichannel marketing performance is better.
In the long-term, that leads to:
- Lower customer acquisition costs (CAC)
- Higher ROI
Let’s see some stats:
- Organic search queries bring 53% of all traffic.
- Fresh pieces of content can increase high-quality organic traffic by 111.3%.
- SEO can reduce customer acquisition costs by 60%.
- 50% of marketers agree that utilizing SEO also reduces their paid ads budgets.
Now that you know the “why,” let’s delve into the “how:”
Step 1: Audit Your Existing Online Presence
Breeeze is a strategy-first SEO agency. We believe that a sound strategy can outrank creativity any day. And that starts with a thorough market analysis of your:
In this section, we’ll focus on a SaaS SEO audit at the enterprise level. Check the following technical issues:
- Website structure
- Schema markup
- Duplicate content
- Loading speed optimization
- Responsiveness on mobile devices
- Internal redirects
- 404 errors
- Bad link disavow
- Broken links
- Internal linking
- Canonical errors
- An XML sitemap
- Meta tags, meta-titles, and meta-description
- Hreflang tags for your international enterprise clients
Pro tip: Good SaaS SEO tools can help you fix these technical aspects and increase your search engine ranking.
At Breeeze, we rely heavily on Ahrefs, SEMrush, and Google to get the job done. These tools show you all the errors on your enterprise website, so you can easily go through and fix them.
Here’s how these errors appear in Ahrefs:
You can quickly see all your website problems in the left column. If you click on the question marks, Ahrefs shows you a summary of all these SEO errors and how to fix them:
And if you click on the problem, Ahrefs shows you its sources.
Notice: These critical SEO issues are ranked by error type. But you can also organize them by “importance” to fix the most urgent ones first.
And Ahrefs gives you useful reports on everything from on-page SEO to content optimization:
Apart from technical SEO audits, you should also focus on content.
A thorough content audit helps your content team:
- Find content inconsistencies
- Zero in on high-performing content
- Improve content quality on all web pages.
Step 2: Do a Thorough Competitor Analysis
After reviewing your website, do a competitive analysis for your enterprise brand. This step is important because you can:
- Reverse engineer their winning SEO optimization strategies.
- Find missing opportunities to boost organic rankings, such as leadership content.
Ahrefs shows you everything as clear as day, from content to links and website structure.
Here are the steps:
2.1. Identify Your Competitors
- Direct competitors address your target audience and promote the same software solutions.
- Indirect competitors may not have the same SaaS offer, but they also address your prospects using the same list of keywords.
Pro tip: Run a related:yourwebsite.com Google search to find these competitors.
Let’s see who Canva’s competitors are:
Pro tip: You can also use Ahrefs Site Explorer and look at Competing Domains to ferret out your competition.
2.2. Analyze Your Competitors’ Performance
Analyze the following metrics to get a better idea of how your competitors perform:
- Domain Rating (DR): This metric indicates a solid backlink profile and a good volume of high-quality content.
- The number of referring domains: This variable shows your competitors’ authority. However, take it with a grain of salt. The number of referring domains is only important if those websites are high quality, so always use white-hat link-building strategies.
- Estimated organic search traffic: Organic search traffic is essential because people can naturally find your competitors’ websites.
- Estimated number of keyword rankings: This shows how many relevant keywords your competitors rank well for and it helps you hone your own keyword strategy.
Once you sign up for Ahrefs Site Explorer, the tool sleuths all this information. Let’s pretend we’re Canva again and see how the competition stacks up:
Alternatively, you can use the no-sign-up-required Ahrefs Authority Checker that shows you something like this:
Click on the section that reads “Top 100 backlinks,” and you get to this:
Now you can see which websites quote your competitors, what anchors they use, and target URLs.
You can also use Ahrefs to analyze your competitors’ referring domains:
And find broken links that you can leverage for your brand. For example, you can use Ahrefs Broken Link Checker to look at Piktochart broken inbound links.
That means you can see all dead links pointing to your competitor from other sources.
You can then pitch these websites to include your materials.
2.3. Conduct Content Analysis
Content is essential for enterprise businesses. That's why you need a valid content marketing strategy that emphasizes your enterprise SEO services.
So, use Ahrefs Site Explorer in your content audit to analyze:
- The organic keywords for which your competitors rank highest
- The PPC keywords your competition is using
- Featured snippets that help your competition dominate search results
- Your competitors’ most successful types of content:
- And their most linkable pages:
Step 3: Create a Buyer Persona
After completing these last two stages, you understand your:
- Current situation – business goals, challenges, and opportunities.
- How your competitors stack up against you.
You must leverage these insights and transform them into strategy. But to do that, you need to understand your potential customer base.
Building a buyer persona is an important aspect of SEO. Here are the two main steps:
- Gather all necessary demographic, social, and psychographic data about your customers: Use Google Analytics, input from your sales team, and any customer interviews.
- Build individual avatars for each segment: In the case of Canva, you need different personas for companies, freelance photographers, and professional ones.
Step 4: Do Extensive Keyword Research
You already did some keyword research when you audited your website, competition, and audience. At this point in the game, you amass all that information into a coherent whole.
There are different types of high-value keywords to consider:
- Seed keywords define generic keywords with high monthly search volumes and high competition. These are just one or two words and help you determine content topics you want to rank for.
Let’s admit we have completely assumed our new personality as Canva by this point.
A seed keyword for this brand would be “editing software.” These short-tail keywords are the basis of discovering specific search terms – aka long-tail keywords.
- Long-tail keywords are more specific and better contour your target customer persona’s search intent.
Ahrefs Keyword Generator helps you find a wide range of keyword suggestions:
But you can also use their Keywords Explorer tool for more in-depth research.
- Branded keywords directly impact your reputation and organic traffic. After all, they are about your brand. So, set up a Google Alarm to monitor these mentions or try a tool like SEMrush Media Monitoring.
- International keywords ensure your enterprise SaaS company addresses all customers in their native language. You don’t want anything lost in translation, although you might be tempted to focus on English keywords.
Here’s Duolingo’s Spanish page:
And Duolingo’s English Page:
Even without scrolling further down, you can see one important difference:
The English version has two different languages: Dutch and Japanese. The Spanish version features Russian and Catalan.
Geeky side note: Interestingly enough, Catalan is a Spanish variant spoken in autonomous Catalonia.
So just one tiny language change leads to a major change in customer search intent.
After getting these keywords:
- Create an Excel sheet.
- Match all these keywords to the right web pages on your website to avoid keyword cannibalization.
- Map all topics to include primary and secondary keywords.
Pro tip: Ensure your keywords mirror your website structure.
Step 5: Create a Content Strategy
Based on the keywords, persona, and funnel stages, your content strategy will emerge like an unpolished diamond.
But first, a few specific tips for enterprise and scale-up brands:
- Focus on informational content rather than money content to produce value for your customers: This brings more organic and referral traffic as you focus on solving your potential customers’ needs.
- Follow the updated Google search quality guidelines based on E-E-A-T (Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness): Giving this format to your content is a sure way for Google to rank you higher in search results pages. Besides, the audience for enterprise SaaS craves all four points from your content.
Pro tip: Before producing informative, expert content, ensure you know where each buying persona is from a sales funnel standpoint.
Writing the correct content for each stage of the funnel ensures:
- Your audience reads and finds out what they need based on their interest.
- You increase your conversion rates.
Here’s a breakdown:
5.1. Awareness Stage
At this phase, your audience is confronted with a problem they don’t know how to solve. For example, they write awesome content for their blog but have just realized some flow charts and infographics would make everything look better.
In comes Canva with an article about that issue:
The best content types at this stage of the funnel include:
- Blog posts
- Social media posts
- Paid ads
5.2. Interest Stage
This phase in the customer funnel means people may already know the generic solution that would help them. So, it’s time to pitch your products to potential users.
- Blog posts
- Email marketing
- Free ebooks
- Case studies
Here’s a good topic for this stage in the game:
5.3. Decision Stage
Potential customers are weighing their options; bring them to your side with content about:
- Free trials
- Beta testing
Or show them how easy it is to use your tools. Yes, we’re still pretending to be Canva:
Continue to target your customers with helpful content even after they’ve purchased your products. The point is to:
- Stay on top of their minds
- Engage with them to build loyalty
- Get more useful feedback and perfect your software solutions
5 Content Best Practices
- Build content guidelines that reflect your style and tone. Include:
- Brand colors
- Value proposition
- Acceptable variations
- Create a resource page with:
- Case studies
- How to guides
- And other marketing assets
- Focus on form:
- Add CTAs to all blog posts.
- Ensure external links send to authoritative websites.
- Ensure all posts feature internal links. Orphan pages affect your SEO efforts because they’re tougher to index and less valuable.
- Leverage a cluster content strategy to streamline the user experience and interconnect your articles.
- Create link-worthy content. This content is highly relevant and innovative, so it has more chances of being linked to by important websites. In turn, this builds your authority and expertise.
Linkworthy content includes:
- Original research
- Industry case studies
- Helpful tools
Here’s another great example from Canva:
- Eliminate or improve harmful content.
You’re selling enterprise SaaS, so your website is massive. That means mistakes can wiggle themselves in more easily within your hundreds of subdomains and pages.
So, use Ahrefs or any other tool to:
- Identify duplicate content
- Suss out broken links
- Find low-quality or outdated links
That’s how you achieve an enhanced user experience and show Google that your content is relevant. In turn, this increases your page rank and helps you get more organic traffic.
Step 6: Spend Some Time on Your Off-Page SEO
Off-page SEO entails building your reputation and authority outside your website.
Off-page SEO takes more time and resources than fixing technical issues. But remember that SEO aims for long-term customer acquisition and retention.
Here are the points you need to focus on:
6.1. Build Your Social Media Community
Your audience will naturally use some high-intent keywords that you want to rank for. But this community will also get you:
- Increased visibility
- Referral traffic
- A support system for potential PR crises
Canva does it right on Instagram with a slew of posts and reels. Notice the Community Stories, Q&A, and Canva Represent – sections which help the brand connect with its audience better:
Build your expertise with HARO, industry round-ups, and expert panels. This way, you get the chance to:
- Create social proof
- Build your own authority
- Get more link-worthy mentions from high-authority websites
Melanie Perkins, CEO of Canvas, is taking an active role in maintaining the website’s reputation:
Even more interestingly, Canva has created a community of verified industry experts:
6.3. Guest Post
Guest posting is a good strategy because it gets you more brand mentions and do-follow links from high-authority sources. That’s from an SEO standpoint. But you also:
- Increase brand awareness.
- Confirm your credibility and expertise.
- Generate high-quality leads qualified by the content that brought them to your website.
Melanie Perkins, for example, is guest posting in several outlets, such as HubSpot:
6.4. Leverage Influencer Marketing
Content creators have a lot of sway over their audiences. They can discuss and present your software solutions to their followers convincingly.
And that can increase your ROI considerably.
But influencer marketing also has significant SEO results because:
- You rank for specific keywords with high search intent.
- You get more links back to your website.
- Your organic traffic accelerates.
Canva runs an affiliate program to reap these benefits:
Side note: An affiliate program includes more than influencers; it features regular people and educators that can promote your products. The result is a broader coverage that increases your visibility.
Step 7: Monitor for Success
It’s essential to monitor your enterprise SEO KPIs to keep track of your:
- Success rate
Keep track of your SEO efforts to zero in on high-performing strategies and hone the less effective ones. That way, you can allocate your budget better and increase ROI.
Starting Your SEO for Enterprise SaaS
After reading our deep dive into the fundamentals of SEO, you know that enterprise SaaS SEO doesn’t have to be hard if you use the right strategy. For that, pay special attention to the research stage. Build different buyers’ personas and focus on your customers’ needs, whether you’re dealing with technical SEO, content creation, or link-building.
Be very deliberate and intentional when you do keyword research, as well.
Google Sheets should become your best friend when creating topic clusters and content calendars. And always strive to build your authority in other authoritative sources as well.
If you need an extra helping hand, Breeeze is here to help. Let’s schedule a free strategy meeting and make an SEO plan for your enterprise SaaS.