SEO Talk: What Is Domain Authority and Which 7 Factors Contribute to It?
If you’ve got a website and you are trying to attract viewers, domain authority is a term that you need to know. This important term involves any website’s ranking using a predetermined set of metrics. The higher the number, the higher your website will rank on a Google search. And, if your website ranks highly on a Google search, more people will see your work.
How does it work?
The challenge with domain authority is actually understanding how it works. This metric was created by an online marketing company called Moz. They created domain authority to compare the success of websites. Domain authority uses inbound links and other metrics – some of which are trade secrets. You might be able to find out more about those secrets, even though they are closely guarded.
Where can you find it?
Any website’s domain authority can easily be found through the Moz website, or by installing the Moz bar on your toolbar. When you use the Moz bar, you can immediately see the domain authority of the website you are on. The lowest number of a website can get is zero, while the highest is 100.
How can you get your page to rank higher? Improving these seven factors is one way to try.
- Add potentially viral content
If one of the key elements to building domain authority is by getting top authority sites to link to you, you need something to get them to notice your site. This is where outstanding, potentially viral content comes into play.
It’s difficult to predict what content will go viral, but you can use Moz to research trends in keywords and phrases so you can build your content around them. If your website does not have a blog or a place to post articles, the best time to start is now. But, don’t just write content that is stuffed with keywords, be sure you have something to say that people will want to read.
- Get busy on social media
Once you’ve posted your outstanding content on your website, the next step is to get busy promoting it. Social media is the best place to share your best work with the world. If you are really trying hard to get a higher domain authority, you might want to consider a paid Google search campaign to really get the views you want.
- Get authority sites to link to your site
To do this, all you have to do is ask (and have quality content for sites to link to). If you want to get sites with more authority to link to them, simply send an email. When you send it, be sure to include the following:
- The website owner’s name (not just “webmaster”)
- A friendly request for editorial consideration
- A brief paragraph that summarizes your site
- The URL to the exact page in your site
- Your phone number
If you do get a response and a friendly link, it is important that you send a follow-up email with a personalized thank you. There is a good chance that many of the webmasters you contact will ignore your request, but you only need one or two to link to you to improve your domain authority.
- Remove spammy links
The next thing you should do is check out who is already linking to you and analyze the sites. Are the sites you want to have affiliated with your work? Are they simply spam sites that will make your readers stop coming to you? If the sites are good, quality websites that will improve your domain, by all means, keep them.
However, if they are spam sites or sites you do not want to be associated with, they remove them quickly. Moz has a spam score that it uses to rank these types of nuisance websites. Check back regularly to be sure you are getting links that will actually help your site, not harm it.
- Remove or repair broken links
The same thing goes for broken links. Your viewers will get annoyed with your site if the links on it are broken. Schedule a time each month to check the links to be sure they all work. If they do not, you might simply need to fix the URL. However, sites go dark on a regular basis. Double check that the site is still active and if it isn’t, remove it and add something new. Your viewers will appreciate it.
- Beef up your anchor text
This is a part of viral content. Anchor text includes the words that are hyperlinked to a website. Usually, when sites backlink to you, they will use anchor text that ties in with their work. On websites with hyperlinks, the anchor text is usually blue and underlined so readers can see there is an active link. You can check out the anchor text that websites like on your pages through Moz. It usually includes words like:
- Brand names
- Clicking for more information
- Latent semantics
- Site names
- Article titles
You can help the sites that are linking to you by adding robust anchor text with active verbs, descriptive adjectives, and thoughtful nouns that offers plenty of opportunities for linking. If you are unsure what anchor text to include, look at what people are already linking to and create similar words in the content you write.
- Re-evaluate your domain name
If you want people to notice you, it is important to have a website with a name worth noticing. A memorable website will help other websites notice your work which should help improve the number of links to your site. Your website name should be short and easy to remember.
Memorable domain names shouldn’t have any numbers or unusual characters, like hyphens or underscores, because people will not remember if they need to use the numeral or the word. If you can include keywords that give people an idea of what your website is about, they will have a reason to visit your site. Names that are vague, long, or spelled strangely tend not to succeed.