If you’re searching for a one stop guide about how to increase domain authority of your sites, you’re in the right place.
Did you know that domain authority of a site contributes to 20% of its SEO success?
That means if you’ve a good domain authority site, it becomes very easy for you to get first page rankings for a keyword when compared to a site with less domain authority.
Have a look at the image below to know few key ranking factors considered by Google to rank a website on search results.
So if you are looking for practical ways to increase domain authority of your website in 2021, this detailed guide will help you.
Before we begin to knowing about how to increase domain authority of your site, here are a few things to consider.
Check your current domain authority (DA): You can use Moz toolbar to find out your website’s domain authority. You can use their tool (it’s free) here to find DA of any website.
Current Domain authority for BloggersPassion.com is 51/100 as shown below:
It’s also helpful for you when you are trying to do link building for your sites to improve your site’s authority. The better the DA of a site the better backlink profile it has.
Table of Contents
- How to Increase Domain Authority of your Website in 2021
- Increase dwell time of your website
- Be smart about external linking
- A New DA Is Coming Shortly from Moz
- Use the 3 link building tactics
- Remove toxic backlinks
- Check and recover from Google penalties
- Maintain a user friendly website
- Create a white hat SEO strategy
- Alternatives to Moz Domain Authority
- What to Do When Your Website’s DA Drops?
- FAQs About how to increase Domain Authority in 2021
- Final thoughts about how to increase domain authority for a website in 2021
What is domain authority?
Domain Authority also known as DA is a score which was originally developed by Moz team (#1 SEO blog) that predicts how well a website will rank on Google search. The higher DA of a website the higher rankings it can get. It’s as simple as that.
What is page authority?
It’s nothing but predicting how well a specific page will rank on Search Engine Results Page (SERP). Moz developed a score for this that ranges from 0 to 100. Where higher the score, greater the ability to rank.
Based on the data from Mozscape web index, it calculates Page Authority (PA) which includes link counts, MozRank and many other factors. It fluctuates when they update the algorithm that calculates Page Authority (PA). Just like Domain Authority (DA), Page Authority is calculated using a machine learning algorithm.
How to Increase Domain Authority of your Website in 2021
Increase dwell time of your website
What is dwell time?
Dwell time is an important On Page SEO metric that calculates your website’s:
- User engagement
- Session duration (aka bounce rate) and
- Click through rates (of your search results)
The more people who spend time on your site reading a page (article, infographic or video) the better rankings it will get.
Dwell time simply means how long your blog visitors are staying on your site without hitting back button. Google is giving more importance to the sites with better dwell time so your domain authority is also increases if you focus on improving your dwell time.
Here are few powerful tips that you can use to increase the dwell time of your websites:
- Start creating 2000+ word blog posts
- Show related posts under every blog post
- Do interlinking regularly and do it wisely
- Open external links in new tabs
Now let’s talk about them in detail.
1. Start creating 2000+ word blog posts:
Short content is dead long ago. If you want to compete with others then start creating 2000+ word blog posts. The long posts drive quality traffic and generate more leads. Google always favours detailed and long content.
If you want to get ranked in Google’s top 10 organic position then your blog post should contain minimum 2000 words. Creating that long form of content takes time but it attracts backlinks and organic traffic.
In an analysis done by Buzzsumo on 100 million articles, it’s revealed that in-depth articles got the most shares on social media. Longer posts gets more social media engagement
- Find evergreen content ideas and dig through Google trends for trending topics. Write on “how-to” guides, frequently asked questions in your niche.
- Gather data and perform scientific study. Do extensive research before writing long form of content.
- Create a robust structure and outline your ideas.
- Once you have structured the ideas then start writing.
- Use pomodoro technique to avoid distractions while writing.
- While writing break long paragraphs into 2 to 3 sentences.
- Double check grammar and spelling mistakes before publishing.
Once published, do promotion of your posts.
2. Show related posts under every post:
To increase page views and reduce bounce rate, you need to see that users won’t leave your blog after reading first post. So, what can you do?
Show related posts under every post. For this, there are several plugins in wordpress.
- Yet another related post plugin. It is one of the most popular wordpress related posts plugin which supports both text display and thumbnails of related posts.
- Contextual related posts: This plugin tries to improve relevancy by contextually matching posts. It will display related posts as thumbnails and text.
- Related posts for wordpress: It is a lightweight alternative to more popular related posts plugin.It uses cache to display related posts. It is faster and does not slow down your website.
- Yuzo related posts: It is very easy to setup and it has set of features that you can expect from related posts plugin.
- Inline related posts: It is quite different from other plugins because instead of showing related posts below the content,it shows them inside your blog posts. Usually this is used by news and blog sites.
The best way to keep your blog visitors for a long time on your blog is to show related posts at the end of the each blog post. So start installing any one of the plugins discussed above and check the results for yourself.
3. Interlink to your old posts:
Interlinking is nothing but linking to your old blog posts. To interlink, focus on targeting the right keywords. If you do it in the right way, you can drive massive traffic to your blog.
What interlinking can do?
- Gets more organic search traffic.
- It helps in ranking better for the desired keywords.
- It increases page views.
- The pages that are linked more often gets high domain authority.
- It helps search engine to crawl each and every page.
To perform automatic interlinking of your posts, here are the wordpress plugins:
- SEO smart link: It automatically links your other posts. You can set the words like “blogging tips” should link to specific posts. It not only interlink to previously written posts but also to future written posts.
- Mentionable: It adds internal links to your blog posts. You can configure it to show suggestions from your pages.
4. Open external links in new tabs:
By opening external links in new tabs, it can reduce bounce rates. Because if they go down a rabbit hole, your blog site will be there in a separate tab waiting for them. If you are a wordpress user, you can use the open external links in a new window plugin.
And make sure to reduce your website’s bounce rates to increase your overall site’s domain authority. Bounce rate is also known as exit rate which is a factor that’s involved in your website’s user behaviour.
If someone is leaving your website without clicking on any other page (i.e on their first visit itself), it’s considered as a bounce rate. The lesser bounce rate or exit rate your site has the better it is for you to increase your SEO and hence your overall domain authority.
Your external links and backlink profile plays a VITAL role in improving your domain authority. Have a look at the image below to understand how important backlinks are when it comes to boosting your domain authority.
Here’s another important thing to consider. If you’re giving away too many links to others from your site without actually acquiring new backlinks, it’s very hard to increase domain authority of your sites. So be smart while linking out to other sites, references or web pages.
As a rule of thumb, you can use rel=”nofollow” tag whenever you’re linking out to
- Affiliate products
- Social media platforms
- Reviews etc
A New DA Is Coming Shortly from Moz
Russ Jones, Principal Search Scientist at Moz recently announced that they are introducing a new domain authority algorithm in the month of March, 2021.
Moz is working on delivering a better and more relevant domain authority metrics which removes spam, improves correlations, and most importantly, update Domain Authority relative to all the changes that Google makes.
After the new DA release, your website DA might fluctuate. We can’t say whether the DA changes will fluctuate by a huge margin or not. So let’s wait for their new DA update from Moz.
So when is the new DA update happening?
To be precise, on March 5th 2019, you can get the latest DA updates.
You can check your own site along with your competitor site’s DA to see how relevant and effective the new DA change from Moz is.
Don’t fret about the new DA changes if your website’s DA rankings go down as it’s not a legitimate or accurate search metric which actually doesn’t determine your Google rankings.
1. Guest blogging
Guest blogging always works like charm in link building. But most of the bloggers fail to do proper guest blogging because it takes time, dedication, effort and some strategies.
Here are the strategies to follow while doing guest blogging:
- Write to only authoritative sites in your niche. Put your effort in writing amazing content for them.
- Use guest posts to grow your email list. To build email list, you can use leadpages to create landing pages.
- Connect to the blog owner before you even pitch with the topic. For this, comment on their blog posts, reply to their social media statuses etc.
- Once you write for them, promote your guest post like your post.
- Write inspirational posts or the post that involves top bloggers to get an instant hit.
People love infographics. These are the most shared and liked content on the web. Infographics can turn the boring data to an interesting post. Visual posts earn more backlinks than the textual content.
To create an original and unique infographic:
- Find the right information before creating it.
- Know who your audience are
- Once you determined your main message, develop a compelling narrative to engage readers.
- Design your infographic.
Promote it in all the social media platform.
3. Run giveaways to build links
Backlinks are extremely important for SEO. Most of the bloggers don’t give backlinks just like that. Then how?
Contests. Yes, it has been a marketing tool and helps in increasing brand exposure, awareness, quick sales.
There are three types of contests:
- Giveaways: Well, who doesn’t love if something is coming for free. That is why giveaways are hugely popular contest type.This is ideal approach if you want to attract bloggers and influencers to spread info about them.
- Product promotions: It works like giveaways but are more product than brand focused. If you want to introduce a new product or service to the market then this is the best approach. The prize is the product itself and so it attracts visitors. It attracts the bloggers and helps in generating links in this process.
- Coupon codes: If you want to target specific audience, these are ideal contests. These are distributed as a reward for participation in a survey.
When Google launched the penguin 2.0 update in 2013, all of a sudden most of the sites experienced a drop in pagerank. This is because of the toxic backlinks. Previously it had little effect but now it harms your site.
What are toxic backlinks?
These are the backlinks that harm your website’s SEO. For example, paid links, links that are received from link schemes, links from gaming or payday loan sites are considered as toxic.
Why to remove toxic backlinks?
If Google notices that your blog has fair number of toxic backlinks, then it reduces your site’s DA and it is likely that it excludes your site from its database.
If you notice a sudden drop in traffic and if you receive a warning notification from Google then it means your blog has toxic backlinks.
If you are getting links from sites that are not indexed by Google, sites that have less domain authority, sites with very less traffic, sites with an unusual number of external links then you must remove those backlinks.
Here is how you can remove toxic backlinks:
- Contact the site owners and request them to remove your links.
- Use Google’s disavow tool to remove toxic backlinks.
- If your website is new and has very less traffic but more toxic backlinks then it’s better to delete the website.
Once you remove toxic backlinks, file a reconsideration request with Google. Make a humble request and outline what steps you took to correct the problem. If you want to get ranked well, then you should take removing toxic backlinks as a serious issue.
You can also use Google’s disavowlinks for removing toxic links from your sites.
Check and recover from Google penalties
Every blogger wants to get more traffic to his/her blog and get ranked well in the top 10 search results. Your business success depends entirely on these two aspects.
And yes, a small drop in traffic impacts rank in Google. In that case, there are chances that your blog may have been hit with Google penalty.
Sometimes Google removes the blog link from its search database and in the worst case it bans too. So, it is very serious issue and proper steps to be taken in order to prevent your site from Penalties.
How to identify Google Penalty?
Monitor your website ranking. Yes, it is very important step. If you don’t monitor, you will not be able to spot Google penalty. Believe me, it is not at all time consuming process. You can use tools for it.
- Google Analytics: It helps you to know your site’s overall health and you can track changes in organic traffic. This tool interacts with many other SEO tools that are available online. Apart from monitoring your website traffic, you can also check ranking status.
- Google Search Console: It is also free tool and helps in monitoring your website traffic.
- Moz rank tracker: It is not free tool but once you become pro-subscriber, it offers valuable SEO tools. If your site is penalized by Google, you can recover from its penalty with the help of its 30 day free trial.
- Search metrics: It gives you clear cut idea of what actually happened on your blog and how to fix them.
- Seositecheckup.com: It offers a vast number of SEO tools to monitor your website. You can use these tools to check so many on-page factors, undesired links and much more.
Types of Google Penalties
In the process of identifying Google penalty, it is good to know the types of penalties too, Here are the 2 types of Google penalties:
- Algorithmic penalty: This comes when there is a change in Google’s algorithm. Whenever they update algorithm the changes are seen. So, always check for major updates.
- Manual review penalty: These begin by a triggered Algorithmic penalty. If you are hit by this penalty then you will receive an email in your Google Search Console account.Just log into your Google webmaster tool account and under section “Search Traffic”, select “Manual Actions”. If no penalties on your blog, then you will see a message “No manual webspam actions found”
How to recover from Google penalty?
Low-quality backlinks penalize your site heavily. These can harm your site beyond repair.
In order to escape from such bad backlinks, avoid getting links from the
- Sites that are banned by Google.
- Sites with duplicate content.
- Sites that are not related to your niche.
- Sites that have thin content.
- Gaming sites
95% of the Google penalties are related to site’s backlinks only so identify backlinks that are causing a drop in your rankings.
Here is how you can identify bad backlinks:
Go to Google Search Console, click on “search traffic” and select “links to your site”. From this module “who links the most”, click on “more” to see all the backlinks.
To export all your backlinks, click on “Download latest links”. Now, import all these backlinks to your SEO tool and remove those links. You can use Monitor backlinks tool.
Once you identify bad backlinks, put a request removal of those links.
Create an email with a request to remove a link.
Once you send the mail, there are three possible scenarios that can happen.
- Either your link will be removed or
- Your email will be ignored or
- Site owner may request for money to remove your link. In this scenario, just disavow the domain.
In the Monitor backlinks tool, Go to “filters”, click on “Tags” and select “disavow”. From this, you can easily create disavow report.
Once you are ready with the disavow report. Upload your file to Google disavow and it takes 2 to 4 weeks to process your request. Once done, you will see change in your rankings.
Maintain a user friendly website
If your website is difficult to navigate, then it frustrates user to the great extent. And most likely they won’t return. So, creating a user friendly website is very important if you are serious about business.
- Guide visitors to specific path in your site. Make sure that visitors know where they are and where they need to go, you can use “Call-To-Action” for this purpose.
- Don’t use jargon words in your content. Make it simple and easy to understand.
- Add search functionality to your site. It makes easy for your visitors to find the information they want.
- Highlight keywords and bold or underline specific texts to make it easy for visitors to understand better.
- Place your navigation either to the left or the top of your website. So, that they will be able to see the options to navigate through your site.
Once you have made these changes, make sure that you test your website.
Create a white hat SEO strategy
Implementing white hat SEO strategy is nothing but getting natural backlinks to your blog. If a high number of pages linked to your blog which are relevant to your niche then Google loves to rank your site higher.
How to get natural backlinks?
- Content is the king. Write remarkably great content that is not easy to find on other websites. You can write controversial topics, case studies, fact and figures.
- Hang out on forums, events related to your niche and build connection with the fellow bloggers.
- Almost every social media sites allow you to put links in the Bio section. It has great value as far as SERPs are concerned.
- Building relationships with other bloggers in your niche helps in getting natural backlinks. Comment on their posts to get their attention.
- If you have good programming skills or know about html then create tools that helps users. It will fetch you tremendous backlinks.
- Check for broken links and replace your link provided you have similar type of content.
- Write genuine guest posts to authoritative sites in your niche and include a link to your site.
- Republish the viral posts and link to original source. There is a possibility that most of the blogs link back to your blog while citing them.
Always remember that, quality backlinks help to get quality traffic and to get better rankings really quickly to any website no matter how old or new it is.
Alternatives to Moz Domain Authority
Before talking about other alternatives to Moz DA, let’s first briefly talk about how the DA functions.
Here’s how DA (Domain Authority) basically works.
Domain Authority is a score (on a 100-point scale) developed by Moz that predicts how well a website will rank on search engines. It calculates this metric by combining all link metrics into a single score such as
- Linking root domains
- Number of total links
It scores Domain Authority on a 100-point, logarithmic scale.
Higher the score higher the quality of domain and suitable to submit our backlinks. A score above 50 is recommended if you want to rank faster for most of the keywords in Google search results. If you’ve a DA of more than 70, you can easily rank even for competitive keywords.
As we all know how popular Moz Domain Authority is, but if you’re looking for few more alternatives to Moz DA, here are few of them.
Ahrefs Domain Rating (DR)
Ahrefs Domain Rating (DR) is equally popular and gives you an overview of the domains with high authority. You can easily find how authoritative a site or domain is by checking the DR which is developed by Ahrefs.
Here’s the DR of Bloggers Passion which is currently 66.
Currently Bloggers Passion has
- DA from Moz of 51 and
- DR from Ahrefs of 66
As you can see, there’s a huge difference between in metrics from two widely used SEO tools Moz and Ahrefs.
Just like Moz DA, Domain Rating (DR) is also measured on a logarithmic scale from 0 to 100, with the latter being the strongest.
According to Ahrefs, “logarithmic scale” means that the gap between DR 77–78 is much bigger than the one between DR 27–28. It simply means, the higher your DR gets, the more challenging it will be to grow it by another few points.
Here’s how Ahrefs calculates the DR of a given website.
- Look at how many unique domains have at least 1 dofollow link to the target website
- Take into account the DR values of those linking domains
- Take into account how many unique domains each of those websites link to
- Plot these scores on a 0 to 100 scale
The interesting thing about DR is that, if a high DR website links to thousands of other sites, Ahrefs values their links less. But if a low DR website only links to a few sites, Ahrefs considers these links powerful which ultimately helps you get higher DR for your domain.
SEO experts and professional bloggers are relying more on DR these days more than DA. We’ll just need to wait for the new DA update from Moz team to see which metric is really effective in terms of determining the authority of a site or domain.
Spam Score Checker
Moz has an amazing tool called Spam Score and Moz does a great job of telling you which inbound links to your site are causing the problem, making it easy for you to reach out to them or to disavow them entirely.
A spam score is a rating that values range between 1 and 10, 1 being the best spam score and 10 being the lowest spam score.
It determines the number of spam links in a website. Google demotes the websites with spam messages and links. Spam Score checker will help us to avoid building links in such websites.
Authority score and trust score from Semrush
Authority Score is Semrush tool’s compound metric that scores the overall quality of a domain.
The score uses the following Semrush data.
- Backlink data including Domain Score
- Trust Score, referring domains, follow and nofollow links
- Organic search data including organic search traffic and positions
- Website traffic data
Trust Score is another incredible Moz DA alternative which basically measures the trustworthiness of a web page or domain based on the number of links coming from highly trusted websites.
Your website’s Trust Score (TS) mostly depends on the quality of your backlink profile. So the more quality and high authority links your domain has, the more your TS will be.
Quick note: Make sure to install SEOquake which is a free plugin for your browser that provides you with organic search data at the click of a button. Currently compatible with Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome and Opera.
You’ll get organic research data along with other useful tools including an SEO Audit, Keyword Density report, Internal/External Link analysis and even social metrics.
What to Do When Your Website’s DA Drops?
One of the common questions most people ask is “what should I do if my site’s DA domain authority drops”?
There are so many instances of sites going from a DA 50 to 10 or even below within a few months and there are also instances where the sites with low DA (below) getting #1 rankings on Google.
So what can you notice from it?
DA has nothing to do with your search rankings. It simply means, instead of worrying about why your site DA has dropped, focus more on how to properly optimize your content for your target keywords and attract relevant links. That way you can increase your search rankings.
That said, there’s another question most people ask “what’s a good DA and PA?”
There’s no thumb rule on how much DA or PA a site should have but if you preferably have a DA of more than 65, you tend to rank well for most of the keywords you’re aiming to rank for.
That being said, Page Authority (PA) measures the ranking strength of a single page of a website whereas Domain Authority (DA) measures the total strength of entire pages, domain and subdomain of the website. The average DA is 30. To rank well your page and domain authority should be more than 30.
So what’s the bottom line?
Can you outrank your competitors if they have a better DA or PA?
Yes, you absolutely can. It doesn’t matter what your competitors DA is. By focusing on “long tail keywords” with less search volume, you can easily beat your competitors even if you’ve a brand new site with less DA.
To be able to outrank your competitors, you must need a solid content marketing strategy where you can also use tools like Semrush to spy on their keywords and backlink sources.
FAQs About how to increase Domain Authority in 2021
Here are few interesting questions around how to increase domain authority in 2021 and beyond which you might find useful.
Although there are a ton of online free tools available which you can use to check domain authority of any site but the best and easiest way to find accurate DA is to install MozBar. It’s a free browser extension which shows you DA of any site whenever you visit it.
Domain Authority (DA) is calculated by evaluating multiple factors, including linking root domains and number of total links, into a single DA score.
DA is a statistical number from 0 to 100, which is developed by Moz to determine how a domain (and its sub-domains) will rank in Google search engine results.
There are 2 best ways to increase your site’s DA.
→ Earn high quality links (you can use tactics such as guest posting, blogger outreach, broken link building etc)
→ Remove bad links (use tools like Semrush and Google Disavow tool to easily find and remove all the toxic links from your sites)
Page Authority (PA) is a metric which is developed by Moz and it helps you estimate the ability for a specific page to rank in search engines like Google. PA uses a 0 to 100 logarithmic scale where a high Page Authority score means your page has the potential to rank well in search engine results when compared to low PA score.
Page Authority is based off data from the Mozscape web index and includes link counts, MozRank and MozTrust scores and more than 40 other factors. Importantly, it does not take into consideration specific on-page elements like keyword use or content optimization.
Page Authority (PA) measures the predictive ranking strength of a single page whereas Domain Authority (DA) measures the strength of entire domains or subdomains.
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Your backlink profile, content quality and user experience – all these factors come into play in increasing the domain authority of a website.
So make sure to focus on removing toxic links and try to acquire as many quality links as you can use by using guest posting, email outreach, skyscraper technique etc.
So what are your thoughts on ‘how to increase domain authority’ guide? Did you find it useful? Do you have more tips or techniques to increase domain authority of a site in 2021? Share your thoughts in the comments below.