You probably already know what a domain name is, and why some domains are better for businesses than others. Choosing a branded domain is essential for your company’s website to make an immediate impact. But once you have chosen the perfect domain for your business, there is yet another crucial task to accomplish: establishing its authority.
If you want to see your website rank in Google’s Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs), you will need to be familiar with the concept of domain authority.
What is Domain Authority
Domain authority is a score used to predict the ranking of a website on search engines. This metric was developed by Moz, which is a reference in SEO. This score is based on a scale ranging from 0 to 100. The higher the number, the better the domain authority.
It should also be noted that Domain Authority (DA) is not the same as Page Authority (PA), which is another ranking metric used by Moz. While the PA score predicts the ranking of a specific page, the DA score predicts the ranking ability of the site as a whole.
Why is domain authority important for SEO?
First of all, it is important to remember that domain authority is a predictor and therefore will not have a direct impact on a site’s ranking. Google does not use this score in itself, which means that it has no direct influence on the actual performance of a site in the SERP.
On the other hand, domain authority is particularly useful as a comparison tool, because it gives you an idea of how your site positions itself in relation to those of your competitors in the eyes of Google. For example, if you have a domain authority of 50 and your competitor’s is 40, this indicates that you are likely to get better results in SERPs. On the other hand, if your website has a lower DA, it suggests risks of a lower ranking and therefore less visibility and traffic.
You can also take the authority of the domain into account in your netlinking strategy, i.e. when you are looking for sites that will display links to your own website. Acquiring a high number of inbound links is essential if you want your website to rank well in the SERPs, but the quality of the links is also important. Examining the domain authorities of the different sites you target can give you an idea of the value Google places on them. Thus, placing links on top-rated sites will likely have the most positive impact on your site’s SEO.
This can also apply to the search terms on which you want to rank. When you type the keywords on Google, you will probably conclude that they are not worth being targeted if the SERPs are dominated by websites with a much higher domain authority than yours – meaning you will have to struggle a lot to get positions. However, if you and your competitors have similar domain authorities, you are more likely to rank well for that keyword.
How is domain authority calculated?
Moz calculates domain authority using its own algorithm that takes into account more than 40 different factors. Because Moz hasn’t publicly disclosed all of these factors, you can’t actively ensure that your website checks all the boxes .
Nevertheless, we know that the number and quality of incoming links to your website, i.e. its link profile, are taken into account. We also know that Moz calculates domain authority using two of its other tools: MozRank and MozTrust. The former rates pages on a scale of 0 to 10 to indicate how many links point to it, while the latter measures the reliability of those links. For example, links from government institution university sites will be considered more trustworthy than links from personal blogs, and a page’s MozTrust rating will be increased accordingly. That’s why expired domain names linked by .gov sites are highly sought-after by SEO experts.
How can I check the authority of my domain?
Moz allows to check its domain authority via its Link Explorer tool. Just enter the address of your website and click on “Analyze” to see your domain authority. This function is also included in the MozBar extension that can be added on your Chrome browser.
What is a good domain authority?
As said above, the higher the score, the better the authority. Some SEO experts have hypothesized that a DA score of 40-50 is average, 50-60 is good, and above 60 is excellent. But in reality, knowing your authority is much more complicated than just looking at scores in such a Manichean way.
If you have recently launched your website, don’t be discouraged by a low score, as new sites always start with a domain authority of 1. It is also important to remember that the domain authority scale is relative, so there will always be fluctuations. As Moz explains: “If Facebook were to acquire a billion new links, everyone’s PA and DA scores would drop accordingly”.
This means that your score will not necessarily reflect your SEO efforts, which is why it should be used as an indication and especially in comparison with competitors’ sites. So forget about the value of the number itself, and focus instead on how it compares to other websites. Remember: your goal is to have a higher DA than your competitors.
How to increase the authority of my domain?
When trying to increase your domain authority, keep in mind that Moz uses a logarithmic scale. Simply put, this means that there is not an equal distance between each number, so it is much easier to increase your score from, say, 20 to 30 than from 70 to 80. Therefore, if you start with a low score, you should be able to increase the authority of the domain more quickly.