SEO

9 Deadly Link Building Mistakes SaaS Companies Must Avoid

Afik Rechler August 25th, 2021

The more backlinks your site has, the higher it ranks, right? Not really.

Backlinks and content are the two most crucial SEO ranking factors. But not all links are equal. In fact, if you make too many link-building mistakes, your site might get penalized by Google algorithms and never recover from it (unless you seek professional help).

In this article, I’ll share some of the most common link-building mistakes that you need to avoid at all costs.

Let’s get started.

1. Not Creating Link-Worthy Content On Your Site

To get backlinks, your site needs to have link-worthy content that others could reference in their content or use to make their content look better.

For example, original research, an infographic, an influencer’s interview, or a super in-depth article on a complex topic.

Here’s an excellent example of a link-worthy content asset.

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This post alone got more than 200 backlinks from some of the highest authority sites in the marketing niche.

Unfortunately, most SaaS marketers launch their link-building campaigns without building link-worthy assets on their sites.

Instead, they try to get homepage backlinks and brand mentions all the time, which doesn’t work because no one would link to your site unless they get some value from it.

As a result, most of their target sites never respond to their outreach emails, and they only get backlinks from cheap and low-quality sites that have no positive impact on their rankings.

2. Investing In Cheap Guest Blogging Campaigns

Guest blogging is among the most effective link-building strategies that can help you secure high-authority links and drive tons of traffic to your site.

But it’s also a very risky strategy.

Why? Because there are thousands of shady SEO and guest blogging agencies that offer cheap guest posting services on PBN sites.

They’ll temporarily improve your rankings but will ultimately get you into trouble. This has become such a widespread problem that Google’s Search Advocate, John Mu recently said guest post links should always be marked as rel-sponsored / rel-nofollow.

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But there’s a workaround.

You can still use guest posts to get backlinks from high-authority sites if you partner with the site owners or authors with editorial access.

But not everyone has the time to build these connections.

This is why we offer this as a service by helping SaaS companies tap into our network of high-authority blogs and get brand mentions and backlinks without any risks.

3. Getting Links From Irrelevant Websites

Link relevance is among the primary factors Google considers when evaluating the quality of a backlink.

A contextually relevant backlink is much more valuable than a link from an irrelevant site that has nothing to do with your niche.

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For example, it doesn’t make sense for a project management software website to get multiple backlinks from fashion & lifestyle blogs or weight loss sites.

In comparison, links from a marketing, business, or technology publication to a project management software site make total sense.

Occasional irrelevant links won’t hurt your rankings.

But if you build them too frequently, they’ll ultimately get you penalized by Google algorithms.

4. Poor Internal Linking

This is among the biggest link-building mistakes that even established SaaS blogs frequently make.

When you get a backlink to any of your site’s pages, you need to distribute its authority to the rest of your website by using relevant internal links.

This allows you to make the most of any backlinks to your site.

Here’s an excellent example of a well-knitted internal link structure.

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In the absence of internal links, your backlink’s benefit remains largely limited to the linked page. This is why you should ideally use 3-4 relevant internal links on every page of your site so that your site benefits when any of your pages are linked to by other high-authority sites.

5. Not Investing In Networking And Influencer Relationships

Modern link building is all about relationships and networking. If you know the editors, publishers, journalists, bloggers, and content creators, you can get links and brand coverage in any publication you want.

Unfortunately, most SaaS companies are so busy building their product, they forget to invest in long-term media relationships. As a result, this costs them when they launch outreach campaigns for link building.

How do you build relationships? By identifying your target influencers and publishers and consistently offering free value without asking for anything in return.

Sounds complicated and time-consuming? Because it is.

But it pays off big-time.

Thankfully, there’s another way. Instead of starting from scratch, you can leverage our network of influencers and publishers that we’ve built and grown carefully over the last few years to secure valuable brand mentions and backlinks.

6. Using Copy/Paste Outreach Emails With No Personalization

If you’re about to use a copy/paste outreach email template from an influencer’s website or an outreach tool, stop right there.

High-traffic sites get hundreds of outreach emails every single day, and they can easily recognize copy/paste email templates from a thousand miles.

If you want people to read your emails, respond to your requests, and give you the links/brand mentions you’re looking for, focus on personalizing your emails.

Write concise emails that get straight to the point and tell your prospect what’s in it for them. Show them the value they’ll get by linking to your site or mentioning your brand. 

For example, show them you’ve published a research study that’ll make their content more credible, or share an infographic that’ll make them look cool. 

Whatever it is, it needs to add value to their business, and your email should make it clear upfront.

7. Building Links From Sites With No Editorial Control

It feels great to find a site that openly invites people to publish content without any strict editorial controls.

The only problem with this approach is that such sites frequently link out to dubious and low-quality sites, which increases their chances of getting penalized by Google algorithms.

This is exactly what happened to Ezine Articles, an open article submission site that Google killed with its Panda update in 2011.

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If you build too many links from such sites, you’ll get affected by the potential penalties as well.

In short, keep your link profile safe from such open-for-all sites.

8. Creating An Unnatural Link Profile

When you actively build backlinks by hiring SEO agencies or link-building services, make sure your link profile still looks natural.

A natural link profile doesn’t have any artificial patterns. For example, not all of its links are “do-follow”. Instead, it has a combination of do-follow and no-follow links.

Similarly, its backlink anchor text isn’t dominated by brand mentions and specific keywords.

Here’s a good example of a natural-looking anchor text distribution.

So when you’re building backlinks, use an even combination of do-follow and no-follow links. Similarly, don’t build too many links too quickly from the same sites. Plus, use keyword-rich anchor text sparingly.

In short, be patient and don’t be too aggressive when building backlinks so that your link profile appears natural. Otherwise, your site might get into trouble with Google’s algorithms.

9. Wasting Money On Comment Spamming And Forum Links 

If you’re still paying link builders for comment and forum links, stop right now.

Comment spam is one of the most useless forms of backlinks that only damages your link profile and gets you into trouble with Google’s algorithms.

Similarly, any forum links that don’t add value to the discussion are useless to your site because they’re mostly  “no-follow” links.

Surprisingly, companies still waste money on such SEO tactics that are not only outdated but hurt your site’s rankings.

Stay away from them.

Are You Still Making These Link Building Mistakes?

Backlinks are among the most crucial search engine ranking factors. But if you’re committing any link-building mistakes I’ve discussed in this article, you need to review your strategy.

There are legitimate white-hat link-building methods that are not only safe but also have a lasting impact on your site’s SEO strength.

If you want to learn about them, get in touch with our SEO experts for a free consultation call so we can tell you about our SEO services. We’ll show you how you can take your SEO game to the next level without risking your brand’s reputation.