17 min read

SaaS Link Building: 9 Bulletproof Tactics

Dmytro Sokhach, CEO of Admix Global
SAAS Link Building

The global SaaS market is currently valued at $261.15 billion and is forecast to reach $819 billion as increasingly more businesses embrace the subscription-based business model.

For many of these businesses, content marketing is one of the main customer acquisition channels, which massively increases the competition in SERPs.

This makes link-building an essential part of their marketing efforts. It also makes it challenging.

In the article, we explore

  • why link-building for SaaS is important,
  • the main challenges for link builders in the SaaS space,
  • 9 link-building strategies for SaaS,
  • how to choose a good SaaS link-building agency.


  • Link-building is vital for SaaS companies to enhance SERP rankings, drive targeted traffic, and establish brand authority in competitive niches.
  • The competitive nature of the SaaS market and the need for high-quality, relevant links pose significant challenges to effective link-building.
  • One of the key challenges for SaaS link builders is that SERPs are likely to be dominated by content from your competitors, which makes it hard to secure links from such sights.
  • Rapid industry changes require continuous high-quality content updates, making it difficult to maintain link attractiveness and relevance.
  • Broken link-building involves identifying and replacing broken links with your content, adding value to the linking site.
  • Link exchanges, trading links with similar niche companies, currently stand as the most effective strategy for building quality backlinks.
  • Creating linkable assets, such as research reports and ultimate guides, attracts organic backlinks by providing valuable information.
  • Using Digital PR techniques to promote your content can accelerate the otherwise slow process of organic link acquisition.
  • HARO allows leveraging expertise to secure links from media outlets by providing unique insights to journalists.
  • Securing guest post opportunities on relevant blogs in exchange for backlinks works only if your content is valuable and your pitch is personalized.
  • You can pitch your tool for inclusion in roundups and listicle link-buildings, or create your lists for link exchanges.
  • The unlinked brand mentions technique involves contacting sites already discussing your brand and asking for a link.
  • Testimonials and case studies provide a dual benefit of backlinks and brand exposure by showcasing real-life product applications.
  • When choosing a SaaS link-building agency, look for proven success in the SaaS sector, transparent practices, and a tailored, strategic approach.
  • For SaaS companies seeking to navigate the complexities of link building and achieve sustainable growth, partnering with an experienced agency like Editorial.Link can provide the expertise and strategic insight needed to succeed.Contact Editorial.Link today to discuss your link-building needs.

Why is Link Building Important for SaaS Companies?

Building links helps your SaaS companies in five important ways:

  • Building trust and credibility: Getting mentioned on trusted sites makes people trust your brand more.
  • Increasing website traffic: Backlinks bring more visitors to your site, boosting overall traffic.
  • Improving search rankings: Having lots of good backlinks makes your site more important, so it shows up higher in search results.
  • Attracting quality leads and sales: Getting the right links can bring in good leads and sales opportunities.
  • Establishing authority: Getting recognized on respected sites strengthens your position in your industry.

Just like in other sectors, link building is an essential part of an SEO strategy for SaaS companies.

SaaS is a very competitive industry, so it’s important to use all techniques to boost your online visibility and domain authority – link building being one of the most important.

Kristavja Caci, SEO Editor at SurferSEO
Kristavja Caci

SEO Editor at Surfer

Nick Malekos, the Head of SEO at LearnWorlds and Founder at Marketing Experts Hub, believes that backlinks from high-quality websites are particularly important if you want to win the top spots in SERPs:

Links are an important component of any SEO strategy, especially in competitive niches and money pages. For SaaS, in order to rank for bottom-of-the-funnel keywords you need to build high-quality, niche-relevant links towards your most important pages or blogs.

Nick Malekos, Head of SEO at LearnWorlds
Nick Malekos

Head of SEO at LearnWorlds

PandaDoc, a leading digital document management platform, is a good example of that.

When we first started working with them in 2021, their monthly traffic oscillated around 184k visitors.

Below are some links we built for our client PandaDoc:

We managed to increase it to around 581k. That’s over 212%.

According to Antonio Gabric, the Outreach Manager at Hunter.io, building a lot of quality links is particularly important if you’re a new kid on the block:

If you’re already a well-known brand or a first-mover, there’s a chance you’ve naturally acquired a lot of link equity, which doesn’t mean you can stop focusing on link building. However, you might not need to build as many high-quality links as a newcomer to the field would.

Antonio Gabric, Outreach Manager at Hunter
Antonio Gabric

Outreach Manager at Hunter.io

Challenges of Link Building for SaaS

There are a few reasons why building links for SaaS companies isn’t easy.

As mentioned, SaaS is a notoriously competitive market, with numerous companies vying for the top spots in SERPs for similar keywords.

Standing out and earning backlinks in such a saturated market requires innovative strategies and high-quality content that offers unique value.

And it’s not about getting any links.

You need to build links that are of decent quality and relevant to drive targeted traffic.

However, as Nick points out, it’s difficult to secure such links to pages that really matter for your SaaS:

The challenge with link-building is that most of the time you want to build links in pages like “Top X Software” or “Best Y for Z” or “Company X Alternatives”, those are branded or category links that are pretty hard to find relevant content and build links to.

Nick Malekos, Head of SEO at LearnWorlds
Nick Malekos

Head of SEO at LearnWorlds

Kristavja echoes Nick’s thoughts:

SaaS tools tend to be quite niche, so it can prove difficult to find many authoritative sites that’ll link to you.

Kristavja Caci, SEO Editor at SurferSEO
Kristavja Caci

SEO Editor at Surfer

Again, link building can be particularly challenging for new companies without established brand visibility:

The … challenge would involve building brand awareness… Starting link-building efforts for a new business that nobody has heard of can make it significantly harder to make an impact initially. Having a well-known brand name behind you can make things somewhat easier.

Antonio Gabric, Outreach Manager at Hunter
Antonio Gabric

Outreach Manager at Hunter.io

Antonio also mentions the lack of relationships as well as setting up the processes for link building and hiring the right team could be challenging for new companies.

Considering all the challenges, building links for SaaS companies at scale may not be feasible without help from an experienced SaaS link-building agency.

Mistakes to Avoid in SaaS Link Building Methods

Not all backlinks give good results. The ways used to get them also matter as many methods can accidentally cause search engines to punish your site.

Here are some common mistakes to avoid when building backlinks for SaaS:

Black hat link building tactics

This methods may help briefly, but they will harm a lot later.

Google will punish dishonest ways to make connections, like buying bad links, spreading false links, getting links from untrustworthy websites, and joining in too much self-promotion.

These can badly hurt your website and business.

Over-optimization anchor text

Use the right anchor text but don't stuff it with too many keywords or repeated phrases.

My little recommendations about anchor text:

  • Never use the same target anchor text more than once;
  • Use your SEO title tag as a link (for example: 33 Advanced B2B Link Building Tactics for 2024 (SEOs proven));
  • The tink type should determine the suitable anchor;
  • Use the person's name as a link (HARO link building helps in this);
  • Avoid too long phrases;
  • Try using synonyms (for instance, for the search query “outsource link building”, you can use “delegating link building”)

Authority over relevancy

Getting backlinks from authority websites is helpful. However, it might not be useful if those sites are unrelated to your SaaS business.

For instance, having backlinks for software development company from a furniture blog won't help you.

Build link only for commercial page or homepage

Instead of focusing only on your home page or services, page for links that help you reach goals and get results.

SaaS Link-building Strategies for Best Results

Having covered the basics, let’s now have a look at 10 strategies that could help you build those valuable backlinks.

1. Broken Link-Building

Broken link-building is a classic technique.

The principle is simple.

You look for broken links on sites relevant to your niche where you’d like a link and reach out to the webmaster or editor to replace it with a link to your content.

As you’re adding value to the linking site, such links should be easier to secure.

How to find such links?

Use SEO tools - Ahrefs, Semrush, and Moz all have that feature in their suites.

In Ahrefs, type the domain in the Site Explorer, and navigate to the Broken Links report in the sidebar menu to view a list of all broken links there.

how to find broken links with ahrefs

There are also plenty of browser extensions to help you identify broken links on a specific page but this is a much more time-consuming process.

browser extensions to help you identify broken links

How effective is the technique?

Nick mentions that it doesn’t work as well as it used to be:

…it’s an overused tactic with a low ROI in links right now. It still works just not greatly. The main issue is that most websites now will either ask for payment or a link as an exchange. Out of 100 broken links, maybe 2-3 will be free, but you might get 5-10 more by exchanges.

Nick Malekos, Head of SEO at LearnWorlds
Nick Malekos

Head of SEO at LearnWorlds

2. Link exchanges

Talking of link exchanges, also known as link swaps or reciprocal link-building, Nick believes it’s currently the most effective strategy:

This is the best way to build links nowadays. The best advice I can give is always keep quality in mind, and try to get links from a page with good content, referring links, or that is ranking by itself.

Nick Malekos, Head of SEO at LearnWorlds
Nick Malekos

Head of SEO at LearnWorlds

He’s not the only one who finds this strategy useful. Authority Hacker has found that link swaps are the go-to tactic for 51.6% of link-builders, while Ahrefs has found that 73.6% of websites have reciprocal links.

As the name suggests, the tactic relies on trading links with other companies in a similar niche or with a similar target audience.

For instance, a social media management platform, like Buffer or Hootsuite, could exchange links with a CRM, like Hubspot or Salesforce.

Directly trading a link for a link isn’t necessarily a good idea as it could be seen as a violation of search engine guidelines.

That’s why ABC link exchanges have become popular: instead of site A linking to B, and B to A, you link to site B, site B links to site C, and site C links to site A.

We rarely do direct exchanges. The most effective method, which leaves no footprint for Google to detect, is ABC link exchanges. 

The ideal scenario is owning at least two websites, allowing for quick insertion of links. If you don’t own multiple sites, you can always partner with other domain owners and leverage their authority for ABC exchanges.

Antonio Gabric, Outreach Manager at Hunter
Antonio Gabric

Outreach Manager at Hunter.io

How can you find such opportunities?

Facebook and LinkedIn groups are very popular as are Slack channels. 

Successful link-builders like Antonio even build their own invite-only channels for this very purpose.

how to do link swap with Slack group

3. Create Linkable Assets

If you want other websites to link to your content, it needs to add value to their articles.

So what kind of content attracts backlinks?

Research reports are one. Here’s an example of an article containing tons of eLearning statistics compiled by the LearnWorlds team. The article has been linked to over 70 times and most of them are organic backlinks (only 3-4 built manually).

example of linkable assets - eLearning statistics

Apart from the data, the article features infographics which increase the article’s potential to build links. That’s because they help readers digest often complex information and are visually pleasing.

example of infographics linkable assets

Ultimate guides are yet another effective link magnet because they offer solutions to genuine user pain points.

For example, the step-by-step guide to creating an online course has links from 340 referring domains, 80% of which are organic.

example of ultimate guides - linkable assets

If you want to see some of the best how-to guides in the SaaS space, check out the Ahrefs blog.

Free tools are also excellent linkable assets for SaaS companies.

Two good examples are Ahrefs Free SEO Tools and SurferSEO Chrome extension, as both have generated thousands of backlinks for their companies (1.6K and 2.1k respectively).

Free tools not only attract links but also demonstrate the product value to prospective customers. This is an essential part of the product-led growth model where the product drives customer acquisition and users become paying customers only after using it for free.

example of free tool by surfer - linkable assets

One thing to bear in mind is that it takes time for your assets to start generating organic links:

You have to be really patient with linkable assets as they may take a few months to start getting links and 1-2 years to bring good results.

Nick Malekos, Head of SEO at LearnWorlds
Nick Malekos

Head of SEO at LearnWorlds

4. Digital PR

One way to accelerate link acquisition for your link bait content is by promoting it with digital PR.

Have a look at this article on a very current topic - AI in education:

The article has generated about 30 links organically. And then 40 more as a result of a PR campaign by another company that used it as a source.

example of digital PR campaign that gives result

Producing topical content and providing commentary on current events is only one way to secure links from high-quality sites.

The obvious way to leverage PR campaigns is to create hype around your new product and feature launches.

5. HARO Link Building

HARO, or Help a Reporter Out, is another way to secure links from media outlets.

The technique allows you to leverage your expertise and industry knowledge to build links by helping journalists and bloggers who are on the lookout for unique insights to enhance their articles.

To do so, head over to HARO, Help a B2B Writer, or Featured (former Terkel.io), and register as a source. Choose your area of expertise where you can help and set the frequency with which the service emails you with requests.

How easy is it to get featured? You need two 2 things to succeed with HARO: speed and engaging content with a unique angle on the subject.

The method can be effective, but it requires a fair bit of effort, as Nick admits:

We used HARO & HelpAB2BWriter. The latter is more effective and relevant for our niche, B2B SaaS, but takes a lot of effort.

Nick Malekos, Head of SEO at LearnWorlds
Nick Malekos

Head of SEO at LearnWorlds

help a B2B writer main page

6. Guest Posting

Guest posting involves creating an article for another company in exchange for a backlink.

Here’s an example of such a blog written by Irina Maltseva, the Head of Growth at Aura, published by Ahrefs.

example of guest post on ahrefs blog

How do you secure such opportunities?

Just post on LinkedIn that you need a guest posting service and wait for your inbox to explode with all the quality offers (joke).

spam on linkedin with guest post proposals

Seriously, though, Google is your best friend here. Just use the right search operators with the keyword you’re after.

For example, if you're looking for blogs and websites about project management accepting guest posts, search for:

  • project management + ”guest article”
  • project management + “write for us”
  • project management + “submit an article”/”submit a guest post”
  • project management + “contributor guidelines”
  • project management + “guest post by”
  • project management + “guest author”
example how to use search operator for SaaS

Again, quality is of utmost importance when choosing sites for your guest posts:

Don’t compromise on link quality. It’s better to not have any links pointing to your domain rather than having links from low-authority or sketchy sites.

Kristavja Caci, SEO Editor at SurferSEO
Kristavja Caci

SEO Editor at Surfer

Finding a high-DR website that accepts blog posts is the easy part. The hard part is pitching your content to convince the editor it’s worth giving you a shot.

To increase your chances, make sure to personalize every single outreach email that you send. Research the content style of the blog you’re targeting and show how you can add value for the readers. This could be by filling in a content gap or presenting a new perspective on the topic.

Sounds like a lot of work for one backlink, right?

 Here’s how you can make it scalable:

We typically share our guest post drafts with our partners, allowing them to include their links in our guest posts. In exchange, they add our links into their websites or their upcoming guest posts…

Here’s the math:

– You write one guest post and insert one link to your business, plus three links for your partners.

– Instead of securing just one unique link, you could potentially acquire four, all from a single guest post.

Antonio Gabric, Outreach Manager at Hunter
Antonio Gabric

Outreach Manager at Hunter.io

7. Listicle link-building

SaaS companies can use listicles to build links in two ways:

  • pitch to the authors of existing articles and ask them to add your tool 
  • create your own and leverage them for link exchanges

Let’s start with the first one.

To begin with, use Google to find relevant roundups or listicles. Use the search operator -“product name” to exclude all of those that already mention your product.

example how to use search operator for SaaS company for listicle link building

The odds are that many of them are written by your competitors - that’s one of the challenges of SaaS link-building.

If you manage to find one that isn’t, the same pitching rules apply as to guest posting: personalize your pitch and deliver value. This could be free credits for your tool, access to premium features, or an invitation to your affiliate program.

Here’s an example of an excellent pitch:

example of an excellent pitch

Again, this process can be resource-intensive but it’s totally worth the effort:

This type of content, which targets users closer to the bottom of the sales funnel, tends to convert quite well. Therefore, having your business featured in these listicles not only boosts link equity but also generates potential new leads.

Antonio Gabric, Outreach Manager at Hunter
Antonio Gabric

Outreach Manager at Hunter.io

If you’re struggling to find a listicle on a site with a decent DR but not written by a competitor, take things in your own hands a create such articles yourself.

This could be an article that features tools targeting the same user group but not direct competitors.

For example, let’s imagine you’re building links for a platform like Userpilot, which allows teams to engage users inside the product.

In your article on the best user engagement tools, you can list software that helps businesses engage users outside of the product, like social media management tools or email marketing platforms.

Before publishing the listicle, reach out to the marketing teams of featured tools and ask if they’re interested in a link exchange.

8. Unlinked brand mentions

Unlinked brand mentions are said to be the low-hanging fruit in the link-building world. After all, you have a foot in the door - the website is already talking about you so they might as well link back to your website, right?

Well, it’s not so easy. They might do it but as is the case with the other techniques, you may need to bribe them.

One way to compensate the website owners could be by inviting them to join the affiliate program, like LearnWorlds do:

We collaborate with our affiliate department for this. Unlinked brand mentions are being send to them and they reach out to get an affiliate link + increase our order in the page.

Nick Malekos, Head of SEO at LearnWorlds
Nick Malekos

Head of SEO at LearnWorlds

Finding unlinked mentions isn’t hard with the right tools. This could be dedicated social listening tools, like Mention or Brand24, but your SEO tools will do as well.

Here’s how you do it in Ahrefs Content Explorer:

  • Type “your brand name” and filter to search only for “in content” results.
how to use content explorer by ahrefs
  • Set the filters (DR, ST, language, and so on)
  • Add your domain URL in “Highlight unlinked”. This will highlight the results that mention your brand but without a link.
Add your domain URL in “Highlight unlinked”
  • Export only highlighted pages.
Export only highlighted pages

It goes without saying that this technique works only if you have enough visibility for people to talk about you:

It works only for established businesses. If your products are not well-known, it’s unlikely that they will be mentioned. But for established businesses, I always recommend checking the mentions at least a few times per year.

Antonio Gabric, Outreach Manager at Hunter
Antonio Gabric

Outreach Manager at Hunter.io

9. Testimonials and case studies

As a SaaS business, how many different tools do you have in your tech stack? Your marketing team alone probably uses at least a dozen.

All these companies, many of them with decent DR, are potential sources of backlinks: reach out to them and offer to provide a testimonial - in exchange for a backlink.

offer to provide a testimonial - in exchange for a backlink

You can take it one step further and collaborate with the tool vendors on case studies. Such resources are of particular value for companies because they allow them to illustrate the real-life impact of their tool.

And you, in addition to the link, get increased exposure for your brand.

example of case studies of hootsuite

Finally, if you’re in the B2B space, try reversing the process: invite your customers to collaborate on case studies and leave testimonials. Offering them a chance to get a backlink from your site can lead to link-building opportunities for your SaaS (exchanges, guest posts, listicles)

How To Choose a SaaS Link Building Agency?

As mentioned, SaaS may not be the easiest sector for link builders. Not all companies have the expertise and relationships to handle it in-house so they decide to outsource it to specialist link-building agencies.

If that’s what you want to do, here are a few things you should consider when choosing an agency.

First, look for agencies that openly share case studies detailing their link-building campaigns for other SaaS companies. Successful case studies demonstrate the agency's ability to deliver tangible outcomes.

What’s more, case studies demonstrate if the agency has the necessary expertise and partnerships in the SaaS space that it can lean into to build links for you!

Editorial.Link case studies

Moreover, examine testimonials from previous clients to gauge satisfaction levels and the quality of service provided.

Feedback about Editorial.Link work

Additionally, check independent review platforms and forums for unbiased feedback. Positive reviews from SaaS businesses similar to yours are a good indicator of the agency’s competence in your specific sector.

feedback about Editorial.Link from client on G2 platform

What’s more, the right agency should offer clear, consistent communication channels and be transparent about their link-building practices. Avoid agencies that promise quick fixes or use opaque methods.

On a similar note, ensure the agency has robust reporting systems in place. They should be able to provide detailed reports that not only show the quantity of links built but also their quality, the impact on your search rankings, and ultimately, on your website traffic and lead generation.

Finally, the agency should offer a strategic, tailored approach to link-building, rather than a one-size-fits-all solution. This includes identifying high-quality, relevant link opportunities, creating valuable content, and conducting personalized outreach.


SaaS is an exciting but also challenging sector for building links. This is mostly because of high competition among companies whose content already dominates SERPs and makes it difficult to get your foot in.

To succeed in link-building in this kind of environment, simply creating quality content doesn’t cut it. Link-builders need to think strategically, foster meaningful industry relationships, and continuously adapt to the evolving landscape.

If you’re looking for a SaaS link-building agency, get in touch with the Editorial.Link team for a chat about your link-building needs.

    Subscribe to the newsletter

    Get a sample of high-quality backlinks for your SaaS project

    It is absolutely free of charge!