Boosting your website’s Domain Authority may not be easy, but it’s definitely worth the effort. Doing so not only increases your site’s chances of ranking top on Google and other search engines, but it will also boost its reputation as an authority in its niche.
So where can I learn how to increase Domain Authority, you might be asking? Well, you’ve come to the right place! Below is a guide to help you understand what DAs are, how it works, and how to boost it. Let’s dive in!
What is Domain Authority?
Developed by Moz, Domain Authority (DA) is a score used to estimate a website’s chances of ranking in search engine result pages (SERPs). DAs typically range from 1 to 100. The higher your score, the likelier your site gets ranked on Google and other search engines.
Why Domain Authority is Important
While Domain Authority is not used officially as a ranking factor in search engines, there is still a lot of circumstantial evidence that support its importance. For one thing, many high-ranking websites on Google and other platforms usually come with high DA scores.
Also, sites with high DAs can share link juice with other pages, increasing the ranking for all parties. For example, if your page gets linked to high-ranking sites, you can increase its rankings without creating backlinks. Just make sure the links stay natural and relevant to give users a positive experience.
Plus, Domain Authority is important if you want your site to gain an edge against your competitors’. Through DAs, you can analyze your competitors’ backlinks, as well as attract higher quality sites to improve yours. Yes, you can rely on PPC and pay your way to the top. But if you want your site to succeed in the long run, better to boost its rankings organically.
What is a Good Domain Authority Score?
As mentioned above, the higher your site’s Domain Authority score is, the higher its rankings could be on search engines. Since the metric is relative, there is no such thing as an absolutely “good,” “average,” or “bad” DA score. In any case, the ideal Domain Authority score varies depending on the site’s scale, audience, and backlinks.
For instance, businesses with a large following tend to have DAs of 90. That’s because they’re seen as experts in their fields, as well as due to many high-quality sites linking to them. Notable examples include Wikipedia, Apple, and WebMD.
On the other hand, smaller companies typically enjoy fewer inbound links than larger entities. Hence, they tend to have a DA score ranging from 20 to 30. These include start-ups, local businesses, and certain personal websites.
At any rate, all brand new websites start with a Domain Authority score of 1. That score can increase over time provided the site gets more authoritative backlinks. If you want to boost your site’s own DA score, then better make sure it attracts high-quality websites.
How to Check My Site’s Domain Authority
Learning how to increase Domain Authority involves knowing how to check it. The best way to check your website’s Domain Authority score is by using the tools provided by Moz. These include the free MozBar, Moz’s Link Explorer, and the SERP Analysis section of their Keyword Explorer. Additionally, you can check your site’s other authority metrics in Moz Pro campaigns, the Moz API, and certain other SEO tools.
How Are Domain Authority Scores Calculated?
DA scores are derived from machine learning calculations since the Domain Authority 2.0 update in early 2019. Basically, an algorithm predicts how Google treats a website’s domain in its SERPs.
To illustrate, let’s say there are two domains (Domain A and Domain B) that regularly appear on Google’s search results. If Domain A appears more often than Domain B, then the algorithm will give the former a higher DA score.
It should be noted that DA scores tend to fluctuate more frequently due to the update. This is because more or fewer data points have become available, and the algorithm incorporates these in its calculations. While this can make things harder for top-ranking sites, it provides opportunities for low-ranking sites to grow their scores. For example, it’s easier to boost your DA score from 20 to 30 than it is to boost it from 70 to 80.
Factors That Affect Domain Authority Score
Anyway, Domain Authority scores are obtained by evaluating certain factors. This score will then be used to track a website’s ranking strength over time. Now there are over 40 factors involved when calculating DA scores, but the most important ones include:
Linking Root Domains
This is the number of authoritative backlinks your website has. Earning one link each from different websites will give you more linking root domains than getting many links from a single website. For example, if your site currently has 40 external links from four different websites, then you’ve only gained four linking root domains. In contrast, having 10 links from 10 different websites will earn you 10 linking root domains.
Since most search engines factor in content when ranking websites, you shouldn’t be surprised that it will be used to determine its DA score. By creating quality content, you’ll build your link profile and prove your potential to search engine algorithms. As an added benefit, it will help you build trust with your target audience as well.
Social signals are the views, likes, and shares obtained by your blog or social media posts. Google uses it to identify if a content has good quality, as well as to determine if it’s useful or relevant. Moz also relies on social signals when determining Domain Authority scores. If your content enjoys substantial views, likes, and shares, then your site’s DA score will most likely grow.
Search Engine Friendliness
Search engine friendliness involves your website’s structure, user-friendliness, and SEO usage. If any of these is lacking, then it will be difficult for search engines like Google to crawl and index your site. This will result in a lower DA score, and it will hurt your rankings in search engines. Additionally, it will make your website hard to navigate through, putting off visitors and hurting your site’s reputation even further.
Used to rate your website’s external links, MozRank checks not only the link’s quality but also its quantity. More specifically, it measures the links on a site’s landing pages, with each page receiving different scores. This metric strictly uses a zero-to-ten scale algorithm (with 10 being the highest), and most web pages tend to have an average MozRank score of 3.
How to Increase Domain Authority
Now that you understand what Domain Authority is, why it’s important, and the factors affecting it, you probably want to know how to apply this knowledge and increase your own site’s DA score. The following tips will help you do that and more.
Pick a Good Domain Name
A great domain name won’t just properly convey what your website is all about, but also helps boost its searchability and DA score. As an added bonus, it helps your target audience remember your website better. So if you’ve just started building a website, better give it a good domain name that’s relevant to your niche. Take SEOPressor for example. Since their main focus is on providing WordPress SEO plugins, their domain name includes the word ‘SEO’ on it.
If you already have a domain, renew it for at least three to five years before it expires. Alternatively, you can buy an old domain so you don’t have to put in effort just to make it age. Again, just make sure the domain name you get is relevant to your planned niche.
Work on Your Off-Page SEO
Websites with strong, clean link profiles will enjoy higher DA scores. To improve your site’s link profile, you need to work on your off-page SEO. That means removing bad links from your pages and gaining better ones from related websites.
Getting rid of bad backlinks can be done easily enough. Simply contact the webmaster and ask them to either add a “nofollow tag” to devalue the link, or you can have it removed altogether. And in case the site owner doesn’t comply, you can rely on the Google disavow tool to get rid of the faulty links from your page.
Meanwhile, gaining good backlinks involves a lot of link building on your part. This bit can be tricky if you’re a beginner. However, if your website has great content and you consistently reach out to other webmasters, you’ll eventually get the hang of it.
Optimize Your On-Page Content
You should also know that your website’s on-page code will play a role in determining your DA score and overall search engine ranking. So make sure to optimize your site’s on-page content, particularly its title, meta description, image alt tags, and body. At the same time, you should use variations of your main keywords, keep all permalinks short and relevant, and add a sidebar section for new posts.
Better yet, try boosting your content and keyword relevance by crafting long-form, in-depth write-ups that covers a wide breadth of topics. For example, if you’re writing about tips on how to increase Domain Authority (like this one), you can briefly discuss some of the other aspects of DA scores. Doing this helps search engines know the context of your content, thus making it easier for their algorithm to categorize and rank your page.
Improve Your Technical SEO
Technical SEO is the process of optimizing your website to make it easier for search engines to crawl and index it. Basically, its main goal is to ensure the quality of your site’s infrastructure.
Get your technical SEO act together, and you won’t have to worry about it again. Do it wrong, however, and you could end up hurting your rankings and Domain Authority. So make sure you do it flawlessly from the get go.
To that end, you need to do a couple of things to optimize your website’s technical SEO, including:
- Getting Google Search Console and Bing Webmaster tools for your website
- Creating and optimizing an xml sitemap
- Checking your robots.txt settings
- Using Fetch as Google
- Migrating your website to https
- Adding structured data information
- Making a properly-defined breadcrumb menu on every page
- Relying on hreflang (in case you have a multilingual website)
Create Linkable Quality Content
Crafting high-quality content and regularly publishing it on your site not only helps boost your Domain Authority score; it will also increase its rankings significantly. Aside from the value it will bring to your target audience, useful, relevant, and entertaining content tends to attract other authoritative sites as well. This increases your chances of getting backlinks from them.
So make sure you write good articles and publish them regularly. If you can’t do that, then find someone who can.
Make Your Website Mobile-Friendly
Back in the day, making a website more mobile-friendly was optional. But with the demand for quality websites and content rising, this is no longer the case.
There are many reasons for this change. For one thing, people these days tend to make queries on their mobile phones rather than their desktops. Mobile-friendliness has also become a ranking factor for Google and other search engines. But more importantly, having a mobile-friendly version of your website helps boost your overall DA score.
So if your website is not yet mobile friendly, now’s the time to start making it so. The best place to start is at Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test page. Visit it and run the test for your domain. Google will then send you a detailed report, alongside recommendations on how to make your website more mobile-friendly.
While it won’t guarantee good rankings for your website, having a high DA score can definitely put it on the right path. By maintaining the right SEO practices, creating quality content, and learning how to increase Domain Authority, you’ll eventually make it there.