To attract traffic and to become a successful brand, you need to rank high up on search engines. But there is no standard benchmark to tell you how well your site is doing. Sometimes, you may try your best to rank on top of search engine results but not succeed. Domain authority can be of immense help in such situations.
Domain Authority (DA) is a popular metric used worldwide to assess a website’s performance. It is a search engine ranking score developed by software giant Moz. DA predicts a website’s likelihood of ranking high on search engine results. It assigns a score between one and 100; the higher the score, the higher a website’s probability of ranking on top. Finding out your ranking score helps you build a website that your customers love.
Multiple factors, such as the total number of links and linking root domains, are considered while evaluating Domain Authority. You can use this score to measure a website’s ranking strength and its performance against competitors. However, it’s important to note that Google doesn’t use Domain Authority as a metric to rank a website. Google uses its algorithms to determine search rankings.
You can check your website’s Domain Authority on:
1. Moz’s backlink checking tool Link Explorer
2. MozBar—Moz’s free SEO toolbar used in the browser
3. Moz keyword tool Keyword Explorer’s SERP analysis section
A 100-point logarithmic scale is used to score Domain Authority. At lower stages, when the score ranges from 10 to 30, it is easier to increase your website’s Domain Authority. It starts getting more complicated at the later stages, i.e., from 75 to 90.
A website with a lot of quality backlinks gets a high score on the Domain Authority scale. Meanwhile, since small business websites have fewer inbound links, they have a low DA score. For new websites that need to be built from scratch, the Domain Authority is 1.
However, you shouldn’t aim for a high DA score alone. You also need to focus on improving your website’s overall SEO. DA score helps when it is used as a comparative metric when assessing the backlink strength of different websites rather than an absolute number. Since it’s primarily used for comparison, no DA score is “good” or “bad.”
To use this metric correctly, you need to understand the concept of Page Authority (PA). Let’s discuss the difference between the two metrics:
Domain Authority assesses a website’s predictive ranking strength. Meanwhile, Page Authority measures an individual web page’s ranking strength.
Link Explorer provides the data that’s used to calculate the DA score through machine learning. It compares thousands of actual search results with link data to set standards to scale the website. Since it is based on machine learning, most of the DA score calculation is subject to fluctuation.
As websites acquire fresh, high-quality backlinks, other websites’ DA and page authority may fall in comparison. SEO experts consider DA as a relative metric to compare against the link profiles of other websites. DA doesn’t give you the absolute value scores against your SEO efforts.
It is not easy to influence DA using direct methods. Since its developers use various metrics and linked data to impact the DA score, collectively, these metrics decide an individual website’s competitiveness to rank on SERPs. As Google also uses hundreds of ranking factors, a metric designed to clone Google algorithms must also work in the same way.
The ideal way to positively influence the DA score is to improve the website’s overall SEO, including its link profile. You should try to earn or engineer as many high-quality backlinks as you can.
Since your DA score is constructed using a complex set of metrics and calculations, figuring out the exact reason for its rise or fall can be difficult. Many potential factors can cause sudden fluctuations in your DA score. Some of them are:
The metrics that cause fluctuations in DA can be highly complex and depend on many positive and negative factors. Sometimes your score may not reflect any of the changes you made to your website’s SEO.
After regular updates in Moz’s metrics to decide DA score, re-calculations may affect a website’s score, regardless of whether it has improved SEO and link profile. It is a relative scaled system, with DA scores more comparative than the absolute values.