When I started learning about SEO and how to improve my page’s ability to rank on search engine pages, I did read a little about domain authority; however, at the time when I was still clueless about everything, it was hard to take on another term and try to understand how it affects my site.
Now that I am more familiar with SEO, I decided to go back to that topic and learn some more.
So today I will be going through the difference between Page Authority and Domain Authority, the factors that affect DA and how that can affect your website as whole.
- Domain Authority VS Page Authority
- What factors affect your DA score?
- How much should your DA score be?
- How can you increase your DA score?
Domain Authority VS Page Authority
What is Domain Authority?
Domain Authority is a metric created by Moz that calculates the level of authority your website has, and based on that it predicts how you can rank on search engine results page (SERP).
A Domain Authority score ranges from 1 to 100, with higher scores corresponding to a greater ability to rank. Meaning that the more authoritative a domain is, the easier for it to rank on search engines for more competitive keywords.
What is Page Authority?
Page Authority is similar to Domain Authority, in that it still measures your ranking ability, however, on a much smaller scale.
It is a metric that ranges between 1 and 100 that is created by Google. And it evaluates how powerful and authoritative a single page on your website is and its ability to rank on the SERP.
Which is more important Domain Authority or Page Authority?
Now that you know the difference between Domain Authority and Page Authority, how do you decide which one to focus on? Or which one is more important to build authority and rank on search engines?
Generally speaking, PA and DA both work towards the same goal which is to have a more authoritative site. What you do on each page to make it more authoritative will ultimately affect your site as a whole, which will affect its DA.
And while it is easier and faster to increase your PA ranking than it is to increase your DA ranking, DA will have a much greater impact on how your entire site will perform in general not just a single page.
Having a high ranking DA means that every new page or post you create on your site will automatically be an authority page, because it is on an authoritative domain.
If you want to know how other competitors or maybe potential collaborators will be assessing your site, then this might shift the attention and importance to DA even more.
This is because Google’s PA has become a somewhat not accurate measurement in terms of assessing a site’s authority, as they stopped updating the pages’ rankings regularly, and they are now updated every 6 months or more.
While Moz’s DA is updated more frequently and, therefore, it has now become a more vital metric to assess the level of authority for a website and how easy for it to rank higher for the selected keywords in its niche.
So, while it is important to pay attention to Google’s page ranking metrics, you should pay extra attention to your DA and know that the ultimate goal is increasing your domain ranking.
You can read all about the page ranking metrics in The Simplest Guide To SEO For Beginners.
What factors affect your DA score?
There are dozens of factors that affects how your domain is ranked. Not all of these factors are public they are merely referred to as algorithms. However, Moz does share the following metrics for site owners to help understand how their site is evaluated.
- Number of referring root domains (main domains as in moz.com and not a subdomain or page on the domain as in blog.moz.com or moz.com/about)
- Number of backlinks pointing to your website
- Quality of the backlinks
- Site volume (how much content is contained in your site)
- Age of domain (that is, when it first went live on Google, not when the domain name was first registered)
- Amount of social signals (shares on social media)
- Quality of overall site content
- Website speed
- Moz trust (Moz trust is usually computed by Moz and it grows with time)
One more factor that can affect your ranking
It is worth pointing that DA scores do change and not just based on the above factors. Your DA may still drop even if you do everything right and here is why.
We learned that the limit for a DA rank is 100. The more quality content you create and quality backlinks you get, the higher your rank.
So what if a website reaches 100? And then they get more quality backlinks and their website becomes even more authoritative. How will they increase in rank when they have already reached the maximum?
They won’t increase in rank, but every other website will drop in ranking so that they create an even bigger gap.
And this means you should not feel discouraged if you find that your rank dropped despite doing everything right, because when this happens, it affects everyone else on the internet.
How much should your DA score be?
There is no specific number that you should target to reach. While having a high DA score is definitely a good thing, your aim shouldn’t be to get to the very top, but to be at the top of the score ranking among your competitors.
So, you shouldn’t go ahead and compare your DA score with Facebook’s 95 score, for example. However, check the DA of a competitor’s site in your niche and aim to pass that score. You may also want to check a number of them to see where you stand exactly.
You can check your current DA score for free through Moz’s link explorer.
How can you increase your DA score?
1. Quality content
I would say given that your website’s authority entirely depends on how others interact with it either through linking back to it or sharing it, the main focus here should be your website’s content.
Quality content will make it a lot easier to get backlinks and a lot easier to have people read and interact and share your posts.
2. Link audit
One other thing you should focus on is the quality of the backlinks you get. Because “spammy” backlinks or links from poor and untrusted website can actually hurt your ranking.
3. Increase your website speed
Because your website’s loading speed is one of the major factors that will affect your DA, and given that Google favors faster loading websites, you should work on increasing that as much as possible.
There are a few things you can do to increase your site’s loading speed such as:
- Avoid uploading large image sizes and long videos.
- Reduce redirects on your site; because when a link redirects a visitor to a different page that is more time where they wait for the landing page to load. Use this tool to see if you have any redirects on your site.
- Your web hosting server’s efficiency also plays a role in your site’s speed. Because it decides the time it takes for your site’s domain to be pulled out of the server and appear on the web page of the visitor who typed the URL into their browser.
You can check this report on the highest ranking DNS providers in terms of speed to see where yours fall and maybe consider switching providers if you need to.
You can also check your current website loading speed through entering your website’s URL into this tool.
4. Add more content
Since part of the factors that affect your DA score is your site’s age and volume, then by default that means your DA will gradually increase as your site ages and as you keep adding more content, increasing its volume.
For some reason, when I checked the age of this website, it was recorded as only 4 months old even though it has been verified by Google (manually) 8 months ago.
However, 4 months or 8 months, this website is still basically a newborn. And I’m guessing many of the bloggers in my circle also just started their sites around the span of a year or less, so you shouldn’t feel discouraged if you see a low score there.
You still have a lot of time and a lot of content to share to grow online and build an authority. As long as you keep working on improving your site’s content and making those connections to get more people sharing it and linking to it, your ranking will keep going up.
Till next week, happy days!
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