Let’s say you looked up a topic online and the search results gave you hundreds of relevant sites. There are websites you’re familiar with and others you encountered for the first time. Which site will you check first? Remember, even the top-ranked entries in search engine results pages (SERPs) are merely suggestions. You still have the power to choose which one to give your attention to.
More often than not, you’d go for the website that rings a bell. What explains this behavior? It’s because as users—and as human beings, in general—we gravitate toward sources with proven expertise and trustworthiness on a specific subject. However, in a cybersphere of almost two billion sites, ‘ringing a bell’ can take a lot of work. In order to win the attention of both search engines and users, a website needs to have domain authority.
What Is Domain Authority?
Domain authority is an online marketing metric developed by Moz. It refers to a score, ranging from 1 to 100, of how likely a website will be picked up by search engines when a user makes a search query. This score is calculated based on the relevance of a site’s content and backlinks. It’s important to know that domain authority isn’t an official metric used by search engines in their rankings. It’s more of a tool that enables website owners to gauge their competitiveness in their niche and predict how much web traffic they can get.
To strengthen your website’s domain authority, it will take the combined efforts of search engine optimization (SEO), content marketing, web design, and web analytics. You’re most likely going to need professional help in tying all these services together to build a single cohesive website. For a selection of reputable agencies and providers offering relevant services, visit this website.
Increasing your domain authority score is a long and tedious process, but it’s definitely achievable. Here are some tools and tips to get you started:
1. Design And Usability: Back To Basics
In order to make an impact and leave a positive impression, your website must have ‘surface credibility’. Users can get a grasp of how you run your business and what kind of branding you have by simply looking at your website. This is why it’s important to have a professional-looking and highly-informative landing page. No matter how big or small your company is, having good web design means going back to the basics of design. Smart usage of language, typography, images, layout, and other visual elements is crucial to your site’s overall appeal.
Design and user experience are closely related, which is why you should also pay attention to accessibility and navigation. Slow-loading websites tend to get a high ‘bounce rate’ or the percentage of visitors who leave immediately, so it's crucial to speed up your loading time. You will also earn more positive points if your website has a simple and easy-to-use interface. The less effort your user exerts in navigating your website, the higher your engagement rate gets.
2. Create Compelling Content—Consistently!
Search engines pull results from websites that regularly publish niche content. In other words, if you consistently post quality content about a specific topic, search engines will acknowledge you as a reputable source on that topic and recommend you to users. As a result, you will have a greater chance of being ranked on SERPs for every search query about your niche.
Your website’s reputability doesn’t end with quality content, though. You should also optimize your pages and posts as a follow-through. This is where on-page SEO comes in. In a nutshell, on-page SEO refers to the use of optimization techniques to help your content become more visible to search engines. It includes keyword mapping, proper structuring and formatting of written content, optimizing visual elements, and creating internal links, among a wide range of powerful SEO techniques.
3. Link Up And Collaborate
Once you’ve created quality content, the next step is to get more eyes on it. This is possible trough link building, which is an important element of off-page SEO. The previous section touched on on-page SEO and how it builds credibility through optimization and internal links. Off-page SEO basically does the same thing using external or backlinks. You may think of it this way: on-page SEO is self-promotion, while off-page SEO is PR.
In the cybersphere, a link is a symbol of trust. The more external links that point to your content, the more reputable you become. It’s like the digital version of promotion by word of mouth. Search engines tend to reward websites that have a wide and diverse range of backlinks pointing to them. Apart from ranking high on SERPs, you will also benefit from organic targeted traffic when users from external websites get redirected to your site.
As long as you produce amazing content, external websites will naturally want to link to your site because it will help their credibility, too. Sometimes, however, you’ll have to be more proactive in getting your content noticed. One strategy you can try is guest blogging, wherein you create new content for another reputable website. This is an easy and effective way of introducing your website to new audiences in your niche. At the same time, you can add backlinks in your guest post to earn more traffic.
4. Leverage The Power Of Testimonials
Users tend to put their faith on businesses that are backed by notable or respected names. It’s a smart move to create a section on your website for people, companies, or institutions that have used your product or service. You can also include legitimate testimonials from real clients, famous or otherwise. Doing this highlights the quality of your product and service, and boosts your site visitor’s confidence in your business.
To sum it up, raising your domain authority score can be done both internally and externally. On one hand, you must enrich your website with optimal design and quality content. On the other, you must also interact with your niche community and create a spot where you can showcase your content. Both are equally important and cannot exist independently of each other.