Page and Domain Authority Strongly Impact Your Rankings
What is Domain Authority?
The two main factors that govern how highly your site will rank in the search engine results for a given keyword are relevance and reputation. Both are dependent on your Page and Domain Authority, which rely on smart link building.
Relevance is a measure of how easy it is for the search engine to tell that your web page is really about the search term that’s been used. We improve your relevance with on-page search engine optimization, and we talk about that extensively on other pages of our site.
Reputation is measured by the number of links coming into your web site and (especially) the quality of those links. The most common term for that is Domain Authority. In addition, each page on your site has its own Page Authority.
A web page’s authority score is measured by the number of other web pages that link to it, and that includes pages linking from within your web site as well as links from pages on other web sites. The most commonly used indicator authority is from Moz. Both Page and Domain Authority are scored on a scale of 1-100, with higher scores indicating greater importance or authority on the web.
You don’t need a Domain Authority of 70 or 80; in fact you’re unlikely to get that high unless you’re a nationally recognized brand. You need a Domain Authority in the ballpark of your competitors who show up on the first page of Google for your keyword searches.
If all of the top ranking web sites for one of your critical keyword phrases have authority scores of 25-30 but your web site has a Domain Authority of 10-15, it will be very difficult for your web site to rank among them, no matter how well optimized it is for keyword relevance. Therefore it’s important to embark on a link building campaign so that your web site can effectively compete with others.
How Important is Domain Authority?
Your domain authority generally accounts for about 30% of all factors affecting your rankings in the search engines. This percentage varies depending on each particular search engine’s degree of emphasis on authority. Google weighs it more heavily than other search engines: Your online authority can account for 40-50% or more of where you rank in Google.
In Rank Magic’s search engine optimization recommendations, we always take into account the effect of links among the pages of your web site on your site’s link popularity. That’s one way pages on your site gain authority. The other component has to do with how many pages from other web sites are linking to pages on your site. That’s what we work to increase in our link building efforts for you.
How Can You Build Your Domain Authority?
There are several ways to build your Domain Authority, and indirectly your page authority. Here are a few.
- Excellent content on your site that provides value to your visitors will encourage links without your having to ask for them.
- A listing in Google My Business is a good first start. Make sure you fill out your listing there as thoroughly as possible.
- A listing in the better general purpose directories can help, and it’s an easy way to get a few inbound links.
- Vertical directories are ones restricted related to your industry and they’re another good source of quality links. Examples include Houzz for building trades and FindLaw for lawyers. These often charge for your listing and costs can vary quite substantially.
- Vendors and other business partners can provide links that are focused and keyword specific. They’re excellent prospects because they already like you and work with you.
- Writing guest posts on blogs can work, though it’s been falling out of favor recently.
- Professional associations, chanbers of commerce, and networking groups are excellent sources of reputable and relevant links.
- Often it’s necessary to approach other web sites to link to yours.
Are All Links of Equal Value?
Is link popularity strictly a function of the number of incoming links or are some links are more important than others? The answer is that some links are definitely more important than others. The words in the link and the content on both the linking page and the target page help determine the relevance of the link. And more relevant links help your site’s rankings more. If you have a web site that sells computer software, a link from a computer manufacturer is more relevant that a link from your local butcher’s web site. A link that uses the keyword phrase “computer software” in the text of the link is a more relevant link than one that simply uses your web site address.
Another factor that distinguishes the value of different links is the authority of the linking web site. A link from a web site with a Domain Authority of 35 is far more valuable to you than a similar link from a web site with an authority of 10 or 15.
Which Sites Should I Consider When Exchanging Links?
The best sites to consider requesting links from are web sites that complement your own site but don’t compete directly with you. For sites like that, it makes sense for them to link to you because it provides additional value to visitors on their own site. If you request a link from such a web site, be prepared for them to request a reciprocal link from you. If a web site isn’t good enough for you to link to, you shouldn’t be seeking a link from them.
Never seek a link just for the sake of the link. And above all avoid “link farms” which are web sites designed simply to provide links to other web sites. The search engines are wise to that trick and it won’t help you.
Rank Magic Can Help!
Link building it is a labor-intensive process, and your efforts are probably better focused on your own business. Rank Magic can seek and identify high quality, relevant web sites and ask their webmasters to link to your site.
Many businesses receive form letter email requests for links, and routinely discard them without a second glance. For that reason, Rank Magic always sends personalized individual emails when requesting links. And when possible, we call on the phone. Then we follow up if we don’t get a response promptly.
In addition, we can provide all the information you need to add prospective link partners to a Links or Resources page on your web site. With that in place, we can approach potential link partners. We can explain to them that you’ve already linked to them because it’s of value to your visitors to know about their web site. That makes it easier to explain why it will be valuable for them to link to you.
As you can see, link building is a labor-intensive process and needs to be distributed over time. That’s partly because if there’s a sudden influx of links to you, followed by few or no new links it looks like you bought links. If Google or other search engines suspect that, the links may not count. You could even be at risk of a manual rankings penalty. As a result, we structure a link building campaign as an ongoing authority campaign devoting a predetermined number of hours per month to the effort. For some clients, we devote an hour a month. Other clients may request more..