When talking about SEO and SERP rankings, we can’t forget about Domain Authority (DA). Introduced by Moz, this ranking metric that measures your site’s likelihood of achieving higher rankings on the SERPs. You can easily check your site’s DA score using Moz’s tools like Link Explorer, MozBar, and Mozscape API or other third-party services.
Contrary to popular belief, domain authority has no direct effect on the SERP ranking. Despite so, you shouldn’t neglect it altogether as it still provides insights that will help to improve SEO efforts.
While it’s normal to have a fluctuating domain authority score, you must keep track of it regularly. In case you don’t know, the DA score derives from various factors like linking root domains, external links, and social signals. Having a low DA score means that there are issues like spam backlinks and keyword stuffing that harm them.
If you don’t know how to improve your low DA score, we’re here to help. This article will uncover five simple steps of restoring domain authority and improving your chance of climbing the SERP ranking.
Choose the Right Domain Name
If you don’t have a domain name yet, it’s time to get one. A domain, for one, contributes to your branding and SEO. It also increases your site’s credibility and trustworthiness, which may lead to higher click-through rates (CTR) and conversion rates. In short, it improves your SERP ranking and boosts your domain authority.
Being the representative of your site and brand, you’d want people to recognize and remember your domain easily. To ensure your domain’s memorableness, it’s best to choose a short, catchy name that’s relevant to your site niche. Make sure to avoid symbols and uncommon spelling as it might harm the domain’s readability.
Check the availability of your desired name with a domain checker. For example, hostinger.com will show you the available extensions. What is more, it’s a one-stop-shop – you can choose the domain and register it with Hostinger at the same time. The registration cost may vary depending on the chosen domain extension and period of registration.
If you have secured a domain, make sure that it’s not going to expire anytime soon. Search engines generally favor websites with a longer expiration date as it represents credibility and commitment to stay.
Optimize Your Content
One of the most crucial factors that affect your site’s DA score is content. Besides helping you build a solid audience base, quality content also appeals to search engines’ algorithms that prioritize websites with valuable information.
If visitors find your content useful, you get to improve CTR and decrease the bounce rate — a perfect recipe for high domain authority.
Therefore, it’s essential to continually optimize your content. Incorporating niche-based keywords, customizing meta descriptions, and adding internal linking are few of the many ways of optimizing content.
Additionally, make sure to always produce unique and informative writing as well as avoid keyword stuffing. Remember, your target audience is visitors, not search engines!
High-authority links are links originating from high-ranking websites that point to your site. As indicated by their high DA score and SERP ranking, those websites have established authority and trust with search engines. By associating your site with them, search engines are likely to deem yours just as reputable and trustworthy.
To gain high-authority links, you need to create linkable high-quality content. You may also want to dabble with infographics as they drive the most engagement compared to other visual formats. The goal is to produce engaging, informative, and beneficial content.
Linking out to other high-authority sites is another good practice that’s easy yet highly beneficial. Besides appealing to search engines’ algorithms, adding external links encourages the linked sites to visit yours out of curiosity and link back to you if they like your content. By reaching out to other websites, you get to build a network within your niche.
Remove Bad and Spammy Links
Most search engines consider bad and spammy links as serious offenses. Google, for example, launched Google Penguin in 2012 solely to target link schemes — links that exist for other reasons than providing useful information. If your site hosts these links, search engines may penalize you for trying to manipulate the SERPs.
For this reason, it’s best to avoid linking to low-authority and shady websites at all costs. Additionally, you must not participate in excessive link exchanges and link buying as they go against search engines’ natural link building policy.
Keeping track of the spam score is one of the ways to monitor your site’s reputation. Moz’s Spam Score tool, for instance, can give you insight into the number of unique external links appearing on your website, the DA score, and the spam score. It also analyzes inbound links’ spam score, so you can disavow the ones that may harm your domain authority.
Make a Mobile-Friendly Site
With over 4 billion unique users browsing the web through mobile devices (and counting), having a mobile-friendly website has turned into a necessity. Today, mobile devices comprise 51.65% of the global web page views. If you don’t optimize the site for mobile users, you may risk losing half of your web traffic and tanking the DA score.
The easiest way to do it is to use responsive web design, thus making it easier for visitors to access the site from all types of devices.
Make sure to simplify the menus and mind the content placement to maintain the site’s readability. Furthermore, pay attention to the font and button sizes as mobile devices have a smaller screen compared to the desktop ones.
Google provides a Mobile-Friendly Test tool to check whether or not your website is compatible with mobile devices. The tool also identifies all the mobile usability issues within the site that may harm the mobile browsing experience, so you can immediately address them.
In a Nutshell
Restoring a domain authority may take time and work, but it’s not impossible. Since it represents your site’s performance on the SERPs, it’s best to always keep track of your DA score. After knowing all the factors that influence the ranking metrics, you get to fix the problems immediately and perform preventive measures to keep the score from dipping again.