Now You Know: How Domain Authority is Calculated

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Written by T.E. Wing

Ever wonder how a site’s Domain Authority ranking is calculated? Here’s your answer …

One of the questions I get a lot is about how a site’s Domain Authority (DA) score is calculated.

Well, DA is one of many scores developed by Moz for evaluating websites. It’s a prediction for how a site will rank on search engines result pages.

Moz, by the way, is a Seattle-based firm specializes in marketing analytics software. Its tools assist in such areas as search engine optimization (SEO), link building, and content marketing.

A website’s Domain Authority score address its overall rank on search engine results. Another metric, Page Authority, addresses the likelihood of each individual page appearing in search engine results. Each of these is determined by multiple factors, which we’ll explain below.

How does Domain Authority work?

Domain Authority is scored on a range from 1 to 100. The higher the score, the more likely the domain will have a high ranking in search engine results.

So naturally, anyone wanting others to see their content online also wants a high domain score. A site’s DA is determined by factors like the number of backlinks within the site and the DA of said backlinks. How unique each backlink is can also be a factor. And of course, the amount of other websites linking to your own site plays a role in your score. As a general rule, the higher quality content you link to on your own site, the higher your DA can become.

It’s best to view your DA as a comparative measure rather than an absolute measure of the quality of your site. You don’t necessarily need to have a DA close to 100 to be an early result in search engines; you just need to score higher than your competitors.

Thanks to the wide amount of factors which contribute to how DA is scored, it’s significantly easier to improve it at lower scores than it is when you get to the higher ones (70-80 range).

How do I check Domain Authority?

If you’re curious about your own DA or that of your competitors, it’s generally easy to use a page authority checker.

These will generally also factor in your Page Authority to give you an overall idea of how your site ranks. It’s common to see your numbers changing, and this can happen for plenty of reasons.

Remember, your score isn’t just affected by your own site. The internet is an incredibly complex interconnection of links and ideas, and your score can easily be affected by activity on other sites.

For example, when the highest authority sites experience substantial growth in links, it skews the playing field for everyone. It’s important to keep in mind that it can take time for link growth to be captured in a DA checker’s web index, so be patient when trying to grow your site.

How can I influence my Domain Authority?

Speaking of growing your site, you may wonder if there is a way to personally impact your DA score. This is a somewhat tricky question to answer, since DA is determined by an aggregate of metrics that all affect the score. Improving your site’s SEO in general is your best bet to improving your score.

Probably the best way you can do this is to improve your link building. Many SEO professionals consider proper link building to be one of the most challenging parts of their jobs, but it can have excellent benefits for your site.

For example, linking to other sites in your industry can be an effective form of outreach to build relationships with other influencers, which can help your own site become more trusted. This can also increase the odds that your own site gets more referral links, increasing your traffic.

Don’t be discouraged if your site doesn’t have the DA you want yet.

It’s by no means a perfect measure of any site’s overall quality — for example, just because a site gets a lot of traffic doesn’t mean that the site doesn’t have spam, and just because a site isn’t getting much traffic yet doesn’t mean it isn’t full of great information.

At most, try to use it as an indicator of where to focus your future efforts.

For aNewDomain, I’m T.E. Wing.

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