Most website owners have the goal of getting to the #1 spot of the search engine results page. That number one slot can increase your click-through rates by as much as 200 percent! But even getting on the first page of search results can help your website.
Google uses over 200 ranking factors to generate search engine results, and while domain authority (DA) is not one of them, it’s an important metric for any website owner. DA is a ranking metric that predicts how well a site will rank online. It’s an industry standard for SEO and predicting where a site ranks on search engine results pages (SERPs.)
You’ll have higher traffic numbers and conversion rates if you have a high DA score because you’re doing SEO the right way. Remember, DA is a prediction of how Google would rank your site based on a variety of factors.
Like anything else in the SEO world, DA is a long-term metric that takes time and effort to affect it. So, if you’re looking for ways to boost your DA and thereby increase your site traffic, conversions, email subscriptions, and more, keep reading.
Understanding Domain Authority
Before we dive into boosting your DA score, you’ve got to understand what your DA score is and what elements affect it.
DA was created by Moz, the SEO software company, and is calculated by evaluating multiple elements of your website, such as linking root domains and total number of inbound links. DA ranges from a score of 1 to 100, and the higher your score, the better your website will rank.
More simply, your DA shows your site’s relevance for your industry, market, or a specific topic. Your score can fluctuate based on the factors Moz uses to score your DA, meaning it can go up or down relative to the DA of the highest authority website. Not only that, but Moz designed DA to be logarithmic, which means that when your score is high, it’s hard to improve it. For example, it’s easy to go from 20 to 30, but significantly harder to go from 80-90.
What’s a Good Domain Authority Score?
Many factors go into calculating a DA score, but, the higher the score, the better your chances of getting highly ranked by Google.
Large, well-known websites like Google, Apple, and Microsoft have high DA scores (between 95-100), while CustomerThink’s website is around 71 as of this writing. Smaller or newer websites will have a DA in the 10-20 range, mainly because they don’t have a lot of backlinks.
Just remember, DA helps you predict your website’s position in search engine results and is tied to the entire domain. You may have pages that rank higher than your overall domain, which is a separate topic (page domain versus domain authority.)
Now that we’ve covered what domain authority is and why it’s important to your website let’s take a look at how you can increase your DA score.
5 Ways to Boost Your Website’s DA Score
Remember, increasing your DA score is a long-term SEO activity, so it’ll take some time for these to have an immediate effect.
1. Conduct a Link Audit
Google likes domains with a lot of links to a lot of sites, especially if they’re from an authoritative external website. It’ll reward your site if you have lots of good ones and will penalize it if you have a lot of bad ones. So you’ll need to make sure your backlinks are plentiful and high-quality.
That means you have to do a link audit. So, pull out an SEO tool like Ahrefs’ backlink checker or Ubersuggest and type in your domain. The tool will go through all your backlinks and give you a bunch of information about them, including DA scores. Take a look at your backlinks and focus on the ones from sites with a DA below 40. These are the ones you’ll want to dig deeper on.
Look at the relevance of the site, its content quality, and how it links to your website. You can disavow any of these links with Google’s Disavow tool since they’re harming your site’s performance online. When you do this, Google ignores those backlinks when generating SERPs. While not a perfect solution, it’ll help your site.
2. Plan for More High-Quality Backlinks
Backlinks are one of the most important ranking factors for search engines. Ahrefs even showed that over 90% of websites aren’t getting organic traffic because they don’t have any backlinks. So, getting backlinks is essential for your website. Getting high-quality backlinks is vital if you want to have a successful website.
To get more backlinks, use an analytics tool to find your top referring websites. Research similar ones to your top referrers and get backlinks to them through post comments, shares, roundup posts, or guest blogging on their site.
You can also look at your competitors and see where their backlinks come from. Then, plan on trying to get backlinks from those sites too.
3. Create Link-Worthy Content Others Can Link To
When you create great content that others want to share, you increase your chances of getting backlinks from high-authority websites. Plus, it’ll increase your root domain score, which is a significant factor in calculating your DA (that’s the number of individual domains that link to your site.)
You can create articles, guides, infographics, podcasts, mini webinars, presentations, and more. But if you want to boost your DA, you’ll need to look at the most popular pages on your website. This way, you can create similar content types and talk about related topics, ensuring it’ll get shared more online and earn you more backlinks.
4. Develop a User-Friendly Site Structure
One of the factors Moz uses to calculate your DA is your site structure. The simpler it is, the faster Google can index it and include it in SERPs. A sitemap is a sort of roadmap for your website, helping search engines index the most important pages quickly.
The second part of your site structure that affects your DA is how easy it is for people to use. And since many people are accessing the Internet via their mobile devices, it makes sense to optimize your site for mobile. Check that it functions properly on mobile devices, that it loads quickly, and provides the same experience as a desktop user.
5. Improve Your Internal Links
Internal links are a good SEO signal to search engines and an excellent way to boost your DA. Why? Because you keep people on your website for longer as they move from link to link and page to page. They also make it easier for search engines to index your site because they can see which pages are important to you.
One thing to remember is that you don’t ultimately control your website’s domain authority directly. Your score is calculated from a variety of factors that you have to put into place and do well, so your DA increases steadily. Improving your DA should be a long-term strategy for your website. Use these five tips to lay a good foundation for your website, and you should see your DA score go up accordingly.