Link building often represents the most challenging aspect of an SEO strategy for a software house, not solely due to the extensive effort it demands.
The process demands a great deal of coordination across various channels, which can significantly strain your resources.
Because of that, it’s quite easy to overlook certain aspects and make – often costly – mistakes.
Let’s take a look at the most common link building mistakes and ways to avoid them.
Is Link Building for a Software House Different?
Link building is the process of acquiring backlinks from other websites to your own. It is one of the key SEO tactics; the links you earn work as proof of trust, indicating your website’s authority to search engines.
Link building is different for every industry – or even website! For software houses, however, link building presents a completely new set of unique challenges, and you should be ready to dig into the technical side of things.
Those come from two main sources: the complexity of the software industry and the widely diverse audience it attracts.
The complexity of the software industry often translates to the intricacy of the topics discussed.
This means that your backlinks should ideally come from authoritative sources that are capable of accurately representing your products or services.
Simultaneously, the diverse audience implies content must be detailed enough to satisfy advanced users yet accessible for those less adept.
Balancing these disparate needs is crucial – but at the same time, it gives you much more room for adjustments.
So, indeed, building links for software houses is different. It’s more complex, which means that if you do it right, you can stand out from the crowd easily.
But, at the same time, it makes it easier to mess up. Here’s what you need to be aware of.
Mistake #1: Having No Strategy
The first and most common mistake that is often made when building links for any company is not having an organized link-building strategy.
Without a plan, it’s difficult to know what links you should focus on and how much time and energy needs to be devoted to each one.
Needless to say, this is not what you want. Such a haphazard approach lacks effectiveness – you’re only wasting resources if you don’t have a proper online visibility strategy in place.
Sure, some of that may work just fine, as an occasional hit might push you up in search results. You shouldn’t leave your link building efforts to chance, though.
Instead of blindly pursuing links, create a well-formulated strategy. This is what you need to keep in mind:
|Keyword and market research
|Use tools like Google Keyword Planner, Semrush, or Ahrefs for keyword research.
|Conduct audience analysis through surveys, social media listening, or Google Analytics.
|Analyze competitors’ websites for their keyword strategies.
|Optimizing your website
|Conduct a technical SEO audit with tools like Ahrefs, Moz, or Screaming Frog.
|Update website content with primary and long-tail keywords, optimizing meta tags, headers, and URLs.
|Improve site navigation, reduce load times, and ensure mobile-friendliness.
|Content development and link building
|Create a content calendar for blogs, case studies, and whitepapers.
|Produce multimedia content like videos or infographics.
|Engage in guest blogging and partner with industry blogs for link building.
|Performance monitoring and continuous improvement
|Set up and monitor metrics with Google Analytics and Search Console.
|Conduct monthly SEO performance reviews and adapt strategies as needed.
|Stay updated with SEO trends and Google algorithm changes.
Of course, this is only the peak of the iceberg. Link building strategy for a software house is a comprehensive topic; the points above are only a basic frame for your strategy.
Mistake #2: Poor Quality Links
A good chunk of link building efforts of your software house should go into broadening your backlink portfolio.
When you ask any SEO specialist about building links, they will likely tell you that you need to guest post and build relationships with websites that can place your link.
While this is not wrong, the mistake here is focusing just on those two.
As a software house, you have many more link building opportunities than other industries.
Event coverage, media releases, software directories, forums, content distribution platforms, and, of course, the treasure trove of technical blogs and websites.
Link building done right should account for all those channels, with the right balance struck between the quality and quantity of backlinks.
Don’t forget about internal linking!
On top of that, you need to make use of your own assets – and link them internally.
Do you have landing pages for different programming languages or tools? Link them to your blog posts! Have insightful articles or blog posts you’re proud of? Maybe they can be a good background for your case studies!
Go through the content you have on your website and see if there are opportunities you might have missed. Yes, your technical documentation pages count too! You’d be surprised, but even the most ‘boring’ pages can make a difference when it comes to internal linking.
Mistake #3: Neglecting Technical SEO
This is where things tend to get complicated. Realistically, you can do link building without touching the technical side of things.
But if you really want to make the most out of your efforts, it’s best not to neglect technical SEO.
After all, what’s the point of gaining backlinks if your website doesn’t rank because of some trivial technical issue?
Let’s take a look at the more common issues and ways to fix or avoid them.
|Metadata, like page titles, headings, and alt texts for images, is crucial for assisting search crawlers in understanding the site’s content. Even more so for websites that use non-standard page layouts or dynamic content.
Remember to always add the necessary metadata!
|Missing resources, broken links, and other crawling issues.
|Large websites may suffer from missing resources or broken links due to updates or external changes. This impacts the site’s reputation and rankings – search engine robots can’t find the resources they should be able to access.
Issues like nofollow attributes in internal links, misconfigured robots.txt files, and broken sitemaps are a few more common issues that can hinder your website’s crawlability.
Conducting a thorough website audit can help you check for broken links and other such problems. You can also implement automated solutions, but that will require a little more work.
|Confusing URL hierarchy
|Poor URL structuring can harm rankings and user understanding. URLs should clearly indicate their position and category within the site’s structure.
This can be tiresome, but once you have fixed it, you won’t have to worry about it – just set some rules regarding new pages.
|Over-optimizing content with excessive keywords is something that can have negative outcomes – it is an indication of manipulating search results, which is clearly prohibited by Google and other search engines.
On top of that, doing so can result in keyword cannibalization, where more than one page will try to compete for the same keywords, ultimately leaving you with no considerable traffic.
Try to use keywords as you would in natural writing. If you’re not sure how many you need, you can use tools like Surfer SEO or NeuronWriter to see the approximates.
|Low Core Web Vitals score and number of indexed pages.
|This lies on a more Google-related side of things, but you should always check your software house website for Core Web Vitals score and the number of indexed pages.
The former refers to the general usability of your website, including accessibility and speed. While it may not be the most important metric out there, it is advisable to stay on the green side of things. Again, a proper audit can help you figure out how to improve your score.
Page indexation is another part of technical SEO that you want to keep in mind. While you don’t want to index all pages (i.e., your admin login page), it’s good to make sure that your landing pages are by all means indexed.
Mistake #4: Low Quality Content
We’ve already mentioned the importance of content quality, but it deserves its own section, given its importance in link building.
Posting low-quality, thin content that doesn’t provide substantial information or value to visitors is another common mistake.
With today’s quality guidelines from Google and other search engines, it’s not enough to have a lot of web pages and fill them with keywords. If you want to rank high, you may need to put in some extra effort.
With Helpful Content Update, Google wants you to serve fresh, thorough, and useful content to your potential customers.
You need to create content that demonstrates expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness.
This means that your website needs to satisfy the needs of your users, beyond just showcasing your services and projects.
Creating expert-level guides, useful how-to articles, or well-researched blog posts can make a significant difference in your authority and trustworthiness.
For the best results, enrich your content with bite-sized infographics, downloadable resources, interactive elements, or even engaging videos explaining complex concepts.
These can capture attention, make your content more shareable, and boost the overall user experience on your site.Remember, a rich, dynamic content is link-worthy content.
More tips for making the most of your content:
Content Quality and Originality: Make sure to write unique and detailed articles that answer the reader’s questions. If you can, cite sources or add quotes from industry experts. This will make your content appear more reliable and valuable.
User Engagement: Involve your readers by using pictures or videos, telling stories, and giving practical advice. Such elements can make hard topics easier to understand. Stories create a personal connection, and useful advice adds an extra layer to your credibility.
Readability and Clarity: Use headings and subheadings to arrange your content and make it easier to read. Write short and clear sentences and paragraphs, and use approachable language. This will make your content easier to read and understand by more people. On top of that, try to maintain a clear content structure – it will help support screen readers and other accessibility solutions.
Personalization and Relevance: Write content that a specific group of readers can relate to. Show that you know and understand their needs and that you’re there to help them. This isn’t only relevant to your product or landing pages! Your blog posts and guides can benefit from this, too.
Structural Elements: Use content templates for different types of content, such as blog posts, lists, and how-to guides. FAQs, helpful links, menus, accordions – they all can make your content more thorough and informative without overwhelming the reader with a wall of text.
User Experience: Make sure your content is free of typos, broken formatting, or code errors. If you’re using any of the extra elements mentioned above, make sure they are easy to spot and use. Avoid overusing animations and other distractors. While adding some motion to your text is good, making the entire website flash will be counterproductive.
Mistake #5: Lack of Perseverance
In one of our latest case studies, we talked about how it took a few months for our SEO efforts to bring any measurable results.
This isn’t anything unusual. It takes from four days to four weeks for Google to even notice the new content you make. The same can be said for links.
This isn’t the end of the story – those new links you built need to be accounted for in your website’s ranking. That, once again, takes some time.This is why link building requires perseverance. It is not meant to be a quick way to boost your traffic, but one that helps you develop your brand over time.
What’s more, ideally, you shouldn’t settle on just a few months of building links.
After the growth phase, in which you focus on building many links quickly, you should move into the maintenance phase, where you still aim to build at least a portion of your initial link building target – both organically and through explicit effort.
Mistake #6: Not Tracking Results
Without tracking the results of your link-building efforts, it’s impossible to know whether you are making any progress toward achieving your goals. This is the basic answer to why you should track your link building metrics.
Google Analytics is a great free tool that can help you monitor the effectiveness of your link-building strategy.
Another such tool is Ahrefs, which is a paid solution that provides detailed reports on your SEO performance, including the links you build. They also offer a variety of free tools.
The more technical answer to why you should track your links is that it allows you to deal with broken links and other issues that might arise after you build them.
Our internal data shows that approximately 20% of links are removed within 24 months. Usually, it's due to some changes in the blog or article, and the editors have no bad intentions, but it is your responsibility to let them know of the issue and ask for the link to be re-added.
In most of the cases, your link will be reinstated. Sometimes, you may be asked to send a replacement, but it's always up to you to keep your eyes on the links. Some people tend to underestimate the impact of not monitoring the links and diminish the issue of a link being broken.
But if you consider the bigger picture and see the fifth part of your effort going into mud, you'll want to reconsider your approach. If you do not have the time to track your links manually, invest in a paid tool that will allow you to monitor them without effort because the ROI will be worth it.
Managing Director @ Chilli fruit
What’s more, it can help you predict which links are toxic – allowing you to take action immediately. The last thing you want for your software house is to have it penalized by Google for taking part in a link scheme or a PBN.
Don’t forget about audits!
Regular SEO audits are the best way to track the SEO performance and integrity of your software house website!
With the Ahrefs suite, Google Analytics, and Google Search Console, you can go through a series of small tests that can help you look for any SEO issues and assess the results of your software house link building campaign.
This checklist from Ahrefs is a great starting point. Not every part of it is related directly to links, but you don’t want to miss them – they all can diminish the power of even the best links.
Effective link building is an essential yet challenging aspect of SEO strategy for any software house.
It takes diligent planning, execution, and tracking to bring the desired results – and even then, success may not be instant.
While this guide has shared key mistakes to avoid and strategies to employ in your link building, the truth is that navigating this territory can be overwhelming if you don’t want to work on it full-time.
But don’t worry, we’re here to help. Reach out to us today, and let’s build a strong, strategic, and effective link building plan for your success!