How Domain Authority (DA) Works in SEO

Last Updated on December 8, 2022

Domain Authority in SEO
SEO website traffic charts and graphs.

There is fierce competition among websites to rank better on Google. The marketing strategy and website ranking of creators are being improved on a constant basis. While your rating is affected by these efforts, they are insufficient on their own. Your position on search engine result pages (SERPs) is determined by Google using more than 200 different ranking parameters.

But how can the authority of a website be assessed, let alone predicted?

While a number of techniques, including Ahrefs’s Domain Rating, can be used to anticipate a website’s positions on SERPs, one of the most well-known metrics is the one created by Moz, known as Domain Authority.

What is Domain Authority?

To guide your digital strategy in the proper direction, it is crucial to define domain authority and what it is not.

When compared to its rivals, a domain’s likelihood of appearing in the SERPs is predicted by a metric called Domain Authority (DA), which was first created by Moz.

It’s crucial to stress that Google does not consider Domain Authority when determining how to rank websites. As a result, it isn’t a metric that will raise your position in search engine rankings (SERPs). However, domain authority is a useful metric that will enable you to evaluate how well your website is performing in comparison to rivals.

These days, Moz isn’t the only company using this metric. Different SEO tools, like SEMrush, have created their own Authority metrics, which are algorithms that determine the Authority score using information from backlinks, referring domains, or search traffic, among other sources. Therefore, even though it isn’t a Google-approved ranking factor, it’s a useful metric to understand how healthy your site is in comparison to those of your rivals.

How is Domain Authority Calculated?

A single DA score is derived by taking into account a number of variables, including connecting root domains and total links. This rating can then be used to compare websites or monitor a website’s “ranking strength” over time. The Domain Authority has no impact on the SERPs and is not a Google ranking criterion.

As of the Domain Authority 2.0 upgrade at the beginning of 2019, the machine learning algorithm’s predictions about how frequently Google would use a domain in its search results are used to calculate a domain’s DA score. We would predict that domain A’s DA would be higher than domain B’s DA if domain A is more likely to appear in a Google SERP than domain B.

Your site’s score will frequently change when more, fewer, or different data points become available and are included in those computations because DA is based on machine learning calculations. For instance, every other website’s DA would decrease in comparison to Facebook’s if were to gain a billion new links.

There will be fewer high-DA spaces available for other domains with weaker link profiles since more established and authoritative domains, such as Facebook, will have progressively larger link profiles. As a result, increasing your score from 20 to 30 is far simpler than increasing it from 70 to 80. It’s crucial to utilise DomainAuthority as a comparative statistic rather than an absolute one for this reason.

What is a Good Domain Authority Score?

The higher the number, the more likely the search engine results page (SERP) would be better. Moz’s Domain Authority search engine ranking score ranges from 1 to 100. The SEO tool considers both the quantity and quality of links that a webpage receives while defining this metric.

A page will be more likely to get a higher score if it has backlinks from authoritative pages, such as Google, Wikipedia, official government pages, and well-known newspapers or magazines.

It will be more likely — and more beneficial — to gain some backlinks over others depending on the sort of industry or the features of the website.

For instance, a training facility might look for links from major newspapers, colleges, academic journals, or official websites. A local company website, on the other hand, probably favours being linked to by regional newspapers or industry journals because those backlinks, even if they don’t have the greatest domain authorities, are more beneficial to the business’s target audience.

Therefore, determining excellent domain authority varies depending on the type of business. In the end, it’s critical that you research your top rivals and make inferences about your website that take into account both your rating and those of your rivals.

The Issues with Domain Authority 

The Moz grading system has the drawback that it is more difficult to improve on a high grade than a low one. You would therefore need to exert much more effort to raise your score from, say, 70 to, say, 30, than from 70 to 30. That is to say, your DA score won’t be much affected even if you create a brand-new, effective marketing strategy to increase traffic or remove any undesirable connections.

Additionally, there is a chance that your domain authority could drop without your fault. This occurs when a widely used website, like Twitter, gains a lot of backlinks or performs otherwise well. This automatically decreases your site’s score and causes it to drop in the search results.

This basically means that you will always be compared to the websites with the highest Domain Authority. You have little ability to compete with these websites, which are similar to Amazon or Wikipedia. Therefore, the best course of action while trying to achieve a “high” score is to attempt to outperform your closest rival.

You shouldn’t rely just on your DA score to determine how successful your site is due to those restrictions. Instead of using it as an absolute measurement, compare things.

The DA score of a new firm will always be one, so keep that in mind. Therefore, if you are a tech start-up attempting to rank for the keywords “send fax from a computer,” you still have work to do to get to the kind of DA that might help you onto page one.

How to Get the Best Score Possible

There isn’t exactly a level that categorises a good or terrible score because of the complexity of DA scores. However, if you want to outperform the competition, you should work to outperform their domains in terms of score.

1. Audit your link profile

Having bad links might do more harm than good, even though inbound connections are essential for your website’s DA and ranks.

Your website’s domain authority may suffer if you link to spammy websites. And in some circumstances, it can even result in a Google penalty. You should check your website for hazardous links and eliminate them as soon as you find them to prevent them from happening. By looking through your website’s entire link profile, you can utilise several SEO tools to find any problematic links.

Additionally, you can utilise Google Search Console to ignore or disavow those links if you are unable to remove them. As a result, when crawling, Google’s crawler won’t take into account any spammy or artificial backlinks.

2. Create engaging content

The second strategy to raise your domain authority is to provide outstanding content that attracts links. What makes your material amazing?

In any case, if readers find your writings useful, they’ll start to spread the word. This boosts your chances of receiving backlinks from websites with high authority, such as universities or governmental agencies. Additionally, you’ll strengthen your root domains with links from various websites. All of which will help you achieve a high DA.

You may now produce several sorts of content, including articles, in-depth guides, videos, infographics, podcasts, slides, and more. But looking at your website’s most popular pages is a terrific place to start. You can produce related themes and content categories in this way.

3. Acquire High-Quality Backlinks from Authority Sites

If you noticed, backlinks play a huge role in calculating domain authority. Not only that, backlinks are one of the two most important ranking factors.

A study by Ahrefs showed that 55.24% of websites don’t get any organic traffic since they don’t have any backlinks. Therefore, it’s safe to say that you need backlinks and high-quality ones.

There are tons of ways you can get backlinks to strengthen your link profile. To start, you can look at your top referral sources and then find similar sites for backlink opportunities. You can also ethically monitor your competition, examine the websites that are linking to them, and then try to do the same. Through guest posting, you can obtain links from reputable websites in another simple approach.

4. Optimize Your Website Structure and User Experience

It’s important to keep in mind that your site’s organisation and usability were considered while determining its domain authority. Search engines can simply crawl and index your web pages if they are properly structured.

You may make a sitemap in WordPress to assist web crawlers. A sitemap helps search engines easily browse your website by containing all of the key pages. When it comes to enhancing the user experience on your site, you should first concentrate on mobile optimization.

Google now prioritises mobile users, which means it will assess how well your website functions on mobile devices. Therefore, it’s critical that your site loads quickly and works properly on mobile devices.

Then, you must guarantee the security of your website. Obtaining SSL certificates and switching your website to HTTPS are two ways to achieve this. Additionally, you may obtain the top WordPress security plugins, such as Sucuri, which comes with a variety of features like a web application firewall.

5. Improve Your Internal Links

Concentrating on your internal link structure is another technique to enhance the user experience on your website. You can retain users on your site longer and lower the bounce rate by providing links to other educational websites. Additionally, internal links make it simpler for search engine crawlers to access your website and index your content.

The value of a page that is sent to other websites is referred to as “link juice” in SEO. More links pointing at a page give the search engine a vote of confidence because they demonstrate the page’s reliability. The sum of these factors increases domain authority.

Final Thoughts

Building your domain authority is an ongoing process that takes time and doesn’t produce benefits right away. To increase traffic to your website, you can increase your website’s exposure in SERPs by implementing these strategies.

Working on these initiatives will help you concentrate on improving lead quality and quantity rather than just your domain authority score.

Before you go…

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