In the SaaS industry, every conversion counts.
That’s why you must do everything to optimize all your customer acquisition channels and systems, with one of the most important being your website.
That’s why I want to share some of the most effective SaaS website best practices proven to boost conversions.
With so many SaaS brands popping up every year, the competition is becoming quite stiff. One area you can have an edge over your competitors is to build your website to perform at it’s maximum. A sure fire way of doing that is providing a positive user experience (UX) by nailing your website structure.
Why Your Website Structure Matters to Growth
Websites were nothing more than digital brochures designed to boost brand awareness in the past. They were built more for aesthetics than anything else. Today, however, SaaS websites are at the heart of all SaaS marketing strategies.
Your SaaS website is where most of the action takes place.
That’s the primary reason why your website structure matters a lot.
But first, what does website structure mean?
Website structure, A.K.A site architecture, refers to how content is organized on your website. This includes content hierarchy and how you categorize and group your content (taxonomy).
Why is all this important?
Determines User Experience
User experience (UX) plays a huge role in how your website converts. A good SaaS website makes it easy for users to find what they’re looking for with minimum effort.
A website that makes it hard for users to find their way around will experience high bounce rates, resulting in poor conversion rates. However, if users find it easy and pleasurable to interact with your website, you’ll enjoy better engagement rates. This leads to a boost in organic inbound leads to your business. A few factors that can lead to poor UX include:
- Confusing navigation
- Too much information
- Absence of vital information
- Poor content
- Too many elements pushing for sales (like popups)
Creating a positive UX on your website requires a lot of research and strategic planning. It also requires you to hire a professional website designer who understands SaaS buyers.
Impacts Your SEO
Another reason to be mindful of your website structure is that it impacts your overall SEO strategy. One of the most significant ways poor site structure can affect your SEO is that it makes it difficult for search engines to crawl your website. This leads to some of your content not being indexed, resulting in it not ranking.
How can you ensure your site structure boosts your SaaS SEO?
Here are a few tips for optimizing your site structure for SEO:
- Be strategic with internal link building.
- Optimize your URLs by making them short and descriptive (especially by including your focus keyword).
- Improve security by using the HTTPS protocol instead of HTTP.
- Fix all broken links and optimize your 404 pages.
- Simplify your site navigation.
- Optimize for speed.
A good site structure also results in good UX and makes it easier to engage with your customers.
Your website has one primary objective — driving sales. And your website structure has a huge impact on this. Here are two ways your site structure affects sales:
- Customers can’t buy what they can’t find: If your site structure is restrictive and makes it difficult to quickly navigate to products, your sales will take a hit.
- People don’t hang around hard-to-navigate sites: If your UX is terrible, you’ll experience high bounce rates. Of course, this means losing potential customers.
Make it easy for buyers to find what they’re looking for by using a simple internal linking structure. You should also consider using a search bar to make on-site search easier.
Your website is your store. Design it inviting. But more importantly, design it in a way that makes shopping a pleasant experience. You can do this by following SaaS website best practices to optimize your site.
Now that you know why website design and site architecture are crucial elements, let’s briefly look at how to create the ideal navigation structure for SaaS websites.
Your primary navigation is probably the most important aspect of your website’s structure. This is because it’s the doorway to the rest of your website. If it’s not properly structured, users can easily get lost. Here’s an excellent example from subscription management platform, Zuora,
Also, visitors don’t have a lot of time. You only have a couple of seconds to engage them once they land on your site. They don’t have the time to sift through every page on your website. That’s why you must include the most important pages and categories in your primary navigation menu. Examples of the most common ones include:
- Solutions/Use Cases
- Target Customer, Industries You Serve, By Role
- Company information
- Customer Stories, Case Studies
Nailing your primary information will lead to users visiting other pages on your site. This results in increased brand recognition, engagement and, of course, a boost in conversions.
Most SaaS brands don’t realize the value of a web page footer. Because of this, they don’t include it in their navigation optimization strategy.
A website’s footer is the section right at the bottom of a web page. This can be used as a navigation menu that can help users reach your content easily. Here’s a classic example from Sendgrid:
Examples of elements you can include in your footer include:
- Most important links
- Resources that couldn’t make it into the primary navigation
- Company blurb
- Social links
Used strategically, your website’s footer can be an excellent tool to help visitors have a better experience on your website.
The resources page is another essential element to consider as you plan your SaaS website’s structure. This is because most B2B buyers visit this page to learn more about your brand and product. Because it mainly leads to informational material, this shouldn’t have too many items in the sub-menu. Again, let’s take a cue from Zuora:
A couple of critical elements to include under the resources menu include:
- Case studies
- Product information
Making it easy for your website visitors to find the information they’re looking for is critical to helping them move down your sales funnel faster.
Ideal URL Structure
Once you’ve figured out the most important elements that impact your website structure, the next step is to map how they’ll be linked. You need to design the best possible URL structure to make it easy for users to navigate around your site. Here are a few tips to help you do just that (and to ensure your URLs are SEO-friendly):
Nest Relevant Pages
Nesting pages in the same category is an excellent way to streamline your URL structure. Nesting a page simply means placing it under another page or category. For example, if your SaaS website has a solutions page and one of the solutions you provide is sales enablement, you’d add the sales enablement page under the solutions page.
In this case, your sales enablement page is nested under the solutions page. Here’s what your URL would look like: https://example.com/solutions/sales-enablement/
When nesting your pages, try to keep each page at a maximum of three levels away from the root (main URL). Designing your URL structure this way makes it easy for both search engines and users to tell what that page is about easily. It also makes it easier to crawl and index content for search engines. On the other hand, deep nested URLs often get crawled and, thus, are rarely indexed.
Another tip for creating optimized URLs is to keep them short. By default, most URLs are made up of the page or post title. Customize them to be short by:
- Removing stop words. Examples of stop words include “and”, “on”, “that”, e.t.c.
- Only include relevant information. For example, instead of “www.example.com/12-seo-best-practices-to-boost-your-rankings”, use “www.example.com/seo-best-practices.”
Again, this makes for positive UX as users can easily remember the URL if they want to revisit it. It also helps boost your SEO.
Include the Primary Focus Keyword
When creating your URLs, it’s best to include your focus keyword. One reason for this is that it helps users and search bots tell that your content will meet their search intent. This helps boost your clickthrough rates. From an SEO point of view, search intent is also a factor that search engines use to rank content.
Another reason including your focus keyword in the URL is important is because it helps search engines index your content. This helps them serve up your content for relevant searches.
Make it Scalable
One thing you must remember about your website is that it’s a living document. As such, it can be expected to grow with time.
That’s why one of the SaaS website structure best practices is to keep the future in mind and leave room for growth. And you do this by designing your URL structure in a scalable way.
One way of doing that is to exclude dates in your URLs. This will help keep the pages evergreen (relevant). Another tip is to keep dates and numbers out of your URLs (even if it’s a listicle). This makes it easy for you to add more content without having your title and URL containing conflicting numbers.
Don’t Use Fancy or Weird Characters
No matter what symbols or characters are in your page’s title, never include them in your URLs.
No weird characters!
The only character you should have in your URL is a hyphen “–”. This means no underscores, equal signs, and any other characters and symbols you may be thinking of adding.
5 Saas Websites with Amazing Site Structure for Your Inspiration
Now that you know why your SaaS website’s URL structure matters to the growth and success of your business, let’s briefly look at some examples to inspire yours.
Kajabi is a SaaS brand that develops digital platforms for content creators and entrepreneurs to monetize their content. The platform helps with the entire lifecycle from content creation to marketing to sales and payment processing.
One thing they did exceptionally well with their website structure is to keep the primary navigation super simple.
The Primary navigation only has five essential links. Everything else a visitor may be looking for can be found nestled under the “Products” and “Resources” menus. You’ll also notice, for example, that the “Products” menu also has several sub-menus that lead each customer to the niche product they’re looking for. This makes it very easy for users to find their way around.
DivvyHQ is a SaaS solution that streamlines the content creation workflow for busy teams. The brand has a sleek looking website that’s easy to navigate.
The Solutions option has a sub-menu that leads to all the products DivvyHQ offers and is the only one with such a structure. Of particular note in the primary navigation is the “Why DivvyHQ?” option. This is a fantastic way to lead visitors down the funnel, as they’ll be led to a page that shows users who need the solution and why.
With most business transactions taking place online, signing documents can be quite a hassle. That’s the problem DocuSign solves.
One subtle element you’ll notice with DocuSign’s navigation is that it caters for users at every stage of the funnel. It has links to:
- Sales team: This is designed for those who are mid-funnel and need to talk to a sales rep.
- Try for Free: Also targeted at mid-funnel users who are interested in getting to know the product better.
- Buy Now button: Designed for those at the bottom of the funnel and ready to buy.
These navigation elements help the DocuSign website convert better, leading to many sales of the product.
Survey Anyplace is a SaaS solution that enables brands to run surveys and conduct different assessments that help collect data vital to business growth. A brief look at the brand’s homepage helps you feel confident in continuing your journey with the product as everything is well placed.
The primary navigation shows users the most important elements they need to navigate the site. Of particular note are the “Features” and “Use Cases” menu items. Most buyers looking for the solutions Survey Anyplace offers will immediately be drawn to these as they are gateways to the information most prospects look for.
One of the SaaS website best practices you must always implement is to place the prominent pages/categories where users can easily see them.
Dropbox is a cloud storage and file management platform that prides itself on making life and work organized for users. And that certainly shows in their website navigation.
Clean. Crisp. Clear. These are just some of the words that can be used to describe Dropbox’s Homepage. Part of that reason is uncluttered primary navigation — just as the platform promises to help unclutter the users’ workspace.
One noticeable element of Dropbox’s primary navigation is the “Why Dropbox?” menu item. This is where Dropbox wins most of its customers. They create different categories that address each target persona’s main concerns. By doing it this way, Dropbox manages to speak to each prospect on a personal level, thereby increasing their conversions.
Your website is not just meant to be aesthetically pleasing. Your design must also be functional and offer users a positive experience. If you can put these three elements together, your website will succeed in being one of your most effective customer acquisition tools in your sales and marketing toolbox.
One mistake many brands make is to focus their site design on the brand. Instead, your site design should showcase your brand and products. However, the experience your site offers must be tailored to users. Following these SaaS website best practices will help you do just that.
If you need help with your SaaS SEO or Content Strategy, RevenueZen is a proven B2B SaaS SEO agency and happy to help anytime.