is a term coined by Moz which gives you a measure of how well your website is positioned to rank in SERP of various search engines.
Important - This is a number not specific to Google, Bing or any other search engines.
The DA score varies from 1-100.
This is an indicative number that provide you with a hint about your positioning abilities across millions of websites on internet on relative basis. This number can drop if others improve and you did not. This can improve if others are not improved as much as you had.
Find out domain authority here
You can use Moz Pro free to get a better view of the overall scenario:
Google search results when Moz Pro extension is used with chrome browser
Google website page adds a header as shown below, when Moz Pro extension is used with chrome browser
When users type search keywords / queries, every search engine tries to fetch the best possible web pages on the requested query and display them in order of page rank.
If other factors remain same and search engine find indexed content matching the search keywords in more authoritative site, it will send it to the top (first page or closer to first page) even though it find great content pages with low domain authority.
This makes domain authority a key factor in attracting substantial web traffic. Since domain authority is a number derived from parameters collected from constituting pages of the domain it is important to have high quality content pages which has the potential to be linked, shared or bookmarked by others.
That is why attaining a high DA score is not easy and requires a lot of work on each individual page.
Google has officially stated that it has no concept of domain authority. It only has a concept of page rank for individual pages.
Moz also reiterated that domain authority is not same as page rank as stated by Google. Google rank pages on the basis of content quality and it determines the quality by measuring comprehensiveness of content, number and quality of backlinks, user engagement with the pages, average session duration, bounce rate, click through ratios (CTC) and more such parameters.
Content is king.
Google is modifying its algorithms often to ensure that the best content is picked all the time. They are constantly trying to identify and remove bad practices out of equation.
Therefore, fail safe ways to increase domain authority lies with writing pages with the intent of producing highest quality content and extremely focused on the subject. They are encouraging publishers to create more engaging, simple and understandable content for their audiences.
Analogy to understand Domain Authority in simple terms
To understand domain authority Lets take the following analogy.
Imagine you want to know about the possible reason of a link failure of a satellite after it was successfully put in its orbit.
Where do you go for? And whom will you trust? Will you trust a blogger, journalist or a scientist from ISRO (Indian Space Research Organization)?
As you have understood that there are many factors which influence domainauthority. Factors that consistently contribute to pushing domain authorityhigher are:
You got it right. The answer would be ISRO. It may be the case that other articles have well explained documents on it but, the authority (trust) lies with ISRO in this case. This is the exact reason why a domain authority is important. The more you write on a particular subject and more linkages you have with similar interest. the more authority you acquire for that subject.
Content Factors Affecting Domain Authority
As you have understood that there are many factors which influence domain authority. Factors that consistently contribute to pushing domain authority higher are:
High quality content essentially mean a comprehensive write-up on the subject covering pain points of readers, advantages of the subject, related questions, myths around the query etc. This all has to be done in simple ways by giving suitable examples, case studies, analogies, pictures, statistics, videos, opinions and animations. High quality content is always focussed on the subject it is dealing with. Analogy and correlation with popular figure or sport help a lot of readers understanding the subject.
Why search engines vouch for backlinks? People may write better content than high authority domains and being introvert they are not pitching for backlinks. Google does not want you to pitch for backlinks. They want it to be linked naturally.
It has been understood by search engines that if you have a very high quality content that people loves will be shared and linked too. People also link to content that they connect with in the same way we connect to the story of movies.
If someone thinks that he has written a great piece of content, it is his / her wishful thinking. Unless your audience connects with your idea, the piece is deemed not so useful and will not get awarded adequately.
Why does structure of content important?
Well! Your audience is your visitors. Once your audience is able to navigate through your site and content with comfort, they will visit more and more. They will know how to find content of their liking and that engages your visitors closely. They spend more time on your site and enjoy your writing more than ever.
Non Content Factors Affecting Domain Authority
Now, here is a list of few other important factors that definitely have positive impact on your domain authority and is in your control from the start of your journey.
Book your domain as early as you conceive the idea of floating a website. Later, when you launch your website, the domain will be a little older and will start ranking due to age factor. The age of domain receives some points in the measure of domain authority (DA). With the ageing of domain, domain authority increases.
Age of domain is determined by the search engines from a date and time where it has first detected contents which can be indexed.
Book your domain for a longer period of time (from 2-10 years). It signals that the domain is associated with a long term business.
Domain trust is a term coined by Moz which measures the trust score based on 100 different parameters. No search engines trust a new domain immediately. It gives some time to domain to build up content pages after which it will start indexing pages slowly.
Few of the trust parameters that are extremely important are:
Expiry Date: Domains with close expiry dates are trusted less than domains with longer expiry date. This comes from the notion that longer expiry date translates to steady and reliable business.
Contact Details: Websites without a contact page are not trusted by search engines and hence command low trust. Website must have a contact page with contact address, contact number and email address. If the email address matches with the email address in domain registration details, it will increase the trust.
Social Media Engagement: Website activities are carefully monitored by search engines these days as the activity count is directly related to improvement in domain authority and page rank. Today, social media is a very powerful force of in bound web traffic. All good businesses are also dealing with social platform do social bookmarking. The active presence on social platform increases the chances of your being found and engaged. Websites with little or no social media activities are less likely to command high domain authority. Please be active on social media platform to increase domain authority chances.
Bounce Rate: Search engine algorithms have become very intelligent. It measures the bounce rate of your pages. Low bounce rate will give high page rank and ultimately it will help you increase domain authority of your website.
Internal link structure: Search engines check for backlinks as well as internal links to determine which page with the website is more important than others. Website pages must be cross linked as much as possible. It increases the overall page rank and domain authority of a website. See how Wikipedia interlinking pages and command a domain authority of 100/100.
Domain size is related to the number of pages a domain hosts. Websites with more the numbers of pages generally command higher domain authority. It is difficult for websites with few pages to achieve that. Domains with more pages are more inter-connected. The navigation and understanding becomes easier for the readers due to same style of writing and content formatting.
So, it is important to write more and higher quality content pages on the domain. It is a general practice therefore to include blogs / news / events pages with any website to attract more traffic and hence potential customers.
Search engines have evolved and have become smarter. They use artificial intelligence tools to gather and analyze user data from various sources. They figure out the websites with frequent updates and blogs which consistently post new articles on a pre scheduled basis. They award such websites by regularly indexing and sending new and updated pages to more visitors.
Implement On page SEO techniques
On-page SEO is an important technique of page optimization. It plays an important role in improving your DA from low to high.
On page SEO includes many technical factors like:
Title plays the most important role in web page. The search engines index your pages based on the keywords in your page title. Use keywords rich title and keep it interesting at the same time for your readers. The title appears in the search result.
Use heading tags to highlight main points and related sub-points.
Avoid keyword stuffing in content and keep the keyword density between 0.5 to 2%.
Find out a good meta description for your article. Never leave it blank. Insert keywords and content categories into the meta description.
Keep the focus on the topic / subject. Do not deviate with un-necessary keyword stuffing. It can confuse search engines and dilute your keyword you want to rank for.
Build a short URL which is user friendly and contains main keywords.
Website speed optimization
Optimize your website speed for desktop and mobile equally as it has been announced as a ranking factor. Website loading performance is counted over a period of time and if affects the website domain authority. With higher page speed, the search crawlers can crawl more and more pages resulting in more page indexing. This also reduce the chances of user leaving the page because the page is not loading and ultimately reduce bounce rate, which have a positive impact on website domain authority.
You can inspect your website for speed
on desktop and mobile. This is a free tool which helps you find out what can improve the overall performance of your website in real time.
Mobile friendly website
Google has introduced the concept of Mobile index first. What it means is that it is mandatory to have responsive website to rank well. It will help cater to all types of readers equally. This will improve traffic to your website and help you increase your domain authority score. It makes your site reachable to more users and devices.
Monitor backlinks of your website
Keep a regular vigil of your backlinks. There are instances that bad backlinks arrive to your site as you grow popular. This may be a negative practice by your competitors to keep you away from competition. This denies you a chance to become and influencer in your niche.
PS: When content quality matters the most?
Imagine that there are two domains (DA and DB) that exist in the same niche and have similar topic pages. Then, the quality of content is what determines which one gets higher domain authority. So, we can say that content quality is also the determinant factor how fast you scale to higher domain authority.
Getting high domain authority in a fail safe way is not difficult. You need to be hard working and patient. Follow search engine guidelines on content quality, regular updates, online SEO, offline SEO, technical SEO (posting XML sitemaps), Social media activities and link building.
Put your concentration on writing useful and comprehensive content for your audience. Then make an attempt to spread the reach of that page to the fullest. The traffic will eventually come as more and more articles or pages are shared. Be prepared to utilize every marketing opportunity. The effect of good work is realized only when it reaches the right people. Search engine will help you, but you have to take the lead and let the search engines follow.
In Document References:What is Domain Authority?Smart Strategies To Get High Quality BacklinksSmart Ways To Earn Money From Website or A BlogThe Ultimate Off-Page SEO Techniques To Rank #1 in GoogleThe Ultimate Guide To On-Page SEO Techniques10 important tips to boost your SEO page ranking10 Common Web Design Mistakes To Avoiddigital marketing