When you have a website, you want to make it as easy as possible for potential customers to find you. Generally, the best way to do this is to be on the first page of the search engine results page (SERP) in the number one spot. But every other business in the same niche as yours also wants the same thing.
So, how can you tell if your website will rank higher on the SERPs than your competition? Because of the secretive nature of the search engine algorithms, it’s sometimes hard to know just exactly where you stand in relation to all the others.
The easiest way is to look at each website’s Domain Authority. The sites with the higher Domain Authority tend to rank higher than those with lower scores.
Although Domain Authority does not impact where a website will actually end up on the SERP, it is a powerful metric to use in gauging how well a site is doing in relation to its competition.
In today’s post, we examine the concept of Domain Authority and why monitoring it can have a beneficial impact on your website’s success.
What is Domain Authority?
Domain Authority (often seen abbreviated as DA) is a logarithmic search engine ranking score developed by Moz. The score system ranges from one to 100 and it predicts how well a site will rank on SERPs.
While Domain Authority is not used in calculating what sites appear where on the SERPs, it does give you an idea of how strong your chances are for ranking higher than your competition. Typically, the higher your site’s Domain Authority the higher it will appear in the SERP.
While everyone strives to earn the highest score possible, a high score is not always needed for a website to succeed. It’s all dependant on the scores of your nearest competition. For example, if your competition ranks between 35 and 40, and you have a Domain Authority of 45, it is likely that your site will show up before your competitors. However, if you are sitting at 45 and the rest of the pack is sitting at an 80 or higher, you know that you have a very long road ahead of you.
While everyone strives to earn the highest score possible, a high score is not always needed for a website to succeed. Click To Tweet
How is Domain Authority Determined?
There are over 40 factors that play into how a website’s Domain Authority is calculated. While the exact criteria used in the calculations are a trade secret, items like root domains, total number of inbound links and website traffic all play a role.
Although search engines do not use Domain Authority as one of their criteria, there is overlap between what factors both use to come up with their end results. This is why Domain Authority is such a useful tool. It doesn’t give you the exact ending, but it gives you a pretty accurate prediction.
How to Check Your Domain Authority Ranking
The most common way to check your website’s Domain Authority is to use an online checker. Moz has an official checker called the Open Site Explorer. This checker allows you to enter any URL to check that site’s backlink profile.
Alternately, if you use Chrome you can download the MozBar extension. According to the website, it provides you with instant metrics for any page or SERP that you view. If you want to keep a close eye on yours and the competition’s rankings, this is a very useful tool.
Can Your Domain Authority Fluctuate?
In short, yes it can. Because websites are always changing and improving, the factors affecting the Domain Authority calculation are also changing and adjusting. No website exists in a vacuum, so any alteration can impact the final score.
You may have made changes to your website to improve its optimization. These changes could impact your score. Conversely, your site may be holding steady but your competition has improved its website. These changes may allow them to both pull ahead of you and devalue your position all at the same time.
Because of its potential to fluctuate, its important to monitor your score regularly.
Domain Authority is an important metric to be aware of when considering your Google ranking. It shows you when your site is properly optimized and when work may be needed. It can give you the edge you need in order to outrank your competition.
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