Over the last few months I’ve seen more and more bloggers talk about their DA score. Or domain authority. Some of you may be like me and think what the heck is this domain authority? Why should I care about it? Well today I’m going to explain exactly what a DA score is and what you need to know about it.
WHAT IS DOMAIN AUTHORITY?
Domain Authority or DA is a score which predicts how well a website will rank on search engine result pages. The DA score ranges from 1 to 100 where higher scores corresponds to a greater ability to rank. It is extremely difficult to get a DA score of 100. Some websites like Twitter or Youtube have this score, this means if you search for something and a page on those domains contains that keyword, those websites will be at the top of the search result.
Your blogs DA is important if you want users to find your blog though a search engine. A higher domain authority means your blog will rank higher in the search rankings possibly resulting in more click throughs to your blog. It is important to note that depending on the keyword you don’t need to have a high domain authority. With less competitive keywords (searches) a website with a low DA can rank high in the search results.
WHERE DO I FIND MY DOMAIN AUTHORITY?
Domain Authority was created by Moz so one of the best places to find your DA is by using Open Site Explorer or MozBar (their free SEO toolbar). DA metrics are also incorporated into many other SEO and online marketing platforms.
However if you have a blog hosted on WordPress.com or Blogger you won’t be able to find the DA for your blog as it is a subdomain of WordPress.com and Blogspot. You need to have a self hosted blog with it’s own domain name to have a domain authority.
HOW CAN I CHANGE MY DA?
As your domain authority is made up of a number of metrics it is difficult to influence directly. The best method in place to change your DA is to improve the overall SEO of your blog. This means not only writing good blog posts, but writing them in a way which makes it easy for search engines to find them.
However there are a few things I have found which quite quickly made an impact on my domain authority.
Internal links: This is the process of creating links from one page of your blog to another. So you should link the high level pages together for example the index and about or contact pages. But with each post you write you should be linking to other posts on your website. This is in addition to using the widgets that add related links at the bottom of your posts.
You can add links to other posts from within the post that you write. The best way to do this is link related posts together. I find around 3 or 4 links within a blog post works best but you can change that. Not only will this help with your DA but it means people reading those posts will click on the links and read more posts.
Remove Links: Links to your blog are good but not all links are equal. In SEO terms links from domains out with your own can help your website rank but depending on the quality of the domain that link comes from it can also penalise you. You can find a list of domains linking to your website using the Open Site Explorer, if you find links coming from spam sites, or websites with very low DA scores its best to ask if they can be removed. If you can’t do this you can ask Google to disavow those links.
You also need to be careful with links going from your website to other domains. Use Broken Link Checker to find any dead links and remove them. These broken links mostly come from spam comments. Check your blogging software to make sure spam comments can’t get past the filters, or turn on comment moderation so you can stop them from being posted.
HOW LONG WILL IT TAKE TO CHANGE?
By working on my SEO and regularly updating my blog I’ve seen my domain authority go from 23 to 26 in around 6 weeks. Because DA works on a logarithmic scale it means it’s far easier to go from 20 to 30 than it is to go from 70 to 80. It is possible to get that high but from my research, even very popular blogs never get much higher than 50 or 60.
There are also factors out with your control that can change your domain authority. This means its not a good idea to compare your DA to other bloggers. Like I mentioned at the start a blog with a low DA could still rank high in search results depending on the keywords used.
You can’t directly influence your domain authority but it is a metric which you should take into account if you really want your blog to rank well in search engines. Even small changes to how your blog is set up and how you write posts can make a big impact on your DA.