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How to Improve Domain Authority?


It is easy to find marketers obsessing over Domain Authority (DA). People who use domain authority naturally want to improve their scores. Most of us have been asked, how can I improve domain authority. More often than not, most of us avoid this question because like any other metric can be abused if it is taken out of context or viewed in isolation.

This article covers some of the most frequently asked questions about domain authority. We will start with the basics and then move on to more difficult topics. We will end with the top question, how do you improve domain authority? If you want actionable advice on improving domain authority, scroll to the bottom of the page.

What is Domain Authority?

Domain Authority predicts how well your site rank on search engine result pages (SERP). DA score ranges from one to 100, with higher scores corresponding to a greater ability to rank.

Domain Authority considers multiple factors, including the number of linking root domains, number of total links to arrive at a single DA score. DA is a search engine ranking score developed by Moz. It is important to note that Google doesn’t use Domain Authority as a metric to determine search rankings, and it does not affect the SERPs.

Suppose we were to plot domain authority on an exponential curve. You will notice that sites with higher authority and backlinks will be featured at the higher end of the curve.

  • Popular blogs/websites like Google, Yahoo, and others have a DA of 80+.
  • Vertically focused sites/blogs usually have a DA of 50+
  • Every newly created site/blog starts with a DA of 0.

You can check the domain authority of any website using the link explorer on Moz. It’s a free tool by Moz that helps you to analyze your domain authority and backlink profile. Additionally, you can also download the Moz Chrome Extension to analyze domain authority of any site that links for a particular keyword or phrase.

People often think that their goal is to improve domain authority score time, with the score 100 being the ultimate goal. But the actual value comes from comparing your site to your true competitor’s sites in the same category, or the same caliber, targeting the same or similar keywords or topics.

For context, sites with scores at or near 100 are Facebook, Amazon, and Wikipedia. So unless you think your website can compare against mega brands, 100 is not a proper goal. Rather than aiming for a score of 100, work on gaining a wider margin between your site’s DA and that of your competitors. 

Domain Authority vs. Page Authority. What’s the difference?

Domain Authority measures the strength of your entire domain or sub-domains, while page authority measures the strength of individual pages.

Domain authority is more of a composite score. It varies more frequently than the individual page results considering it uses much more data.

The Moz metric has evolved over the years to make sure people cheating the system and manipulating the system can no longer increase their rankings easily. The score now even looks at spam score based on the quality of backlinks and the type of traffic generated.

How to improve Domain Authority?

1. Identify Competition

The first thing that you would want to do when it comes to improving your domain authority is to identify who is your competition. Identify who you are competitors are and make sure you’re comparing yourself to the right ones.

If you don’t know who your competitors are, a great way to find out is to use the Analyze a keyword tool on Moz or use the keyword research tool on SEMRush. With both of these tools, you can input a target keyword and see what other sites rank for that keyword.

If another site is consistently ranking for similar keywords, they may be a good competitor to keep an eye on. Once you have identified potential competitors, check to make sure their site size, content, and DA are similar to yours.

2. Analyze & Compare Link Profiles 

Once you have identified your competitors, its time to analyze your links, the more followed backlinks you have in your backlink profile, the better. Think of followed links as a wide-open road for link equity to travel down, whereas nofollow links are link roadblocks that can stop link equity in its tracks, so it’s not able to move on to your site.

3. Create great content to attract links

You may be wondering how to do I get followed links? Well, to get more followed links, you’ll want to make sure that you are creating great content that people want to link to. To find out what kind of content, that is, check your top pages and the top pages of your competitors.

This can give you some great insight into the type of content in your audience and market are looking for. Do check our guide on content marketing to learn how you can create exceptional content to drive traffic, links, and awareness.

4. Check the status of your top pages

Another essential step to take when you are working on improving your DA is to check and make sure that all your top pages are active and accessible. If you have pages on your site that have external links pointing to them, you’ll want to make sure that they aren’t returning a 404 and that they are accessible to anyone who may be attempting to access those links.

If you are finding that some of the top pages aren’t active, you may want to consider fixing those pages or redirecting those pages to a more relevant, active page on your site.

Another option would be to reach out to those sites linking to those dead pages and ask them to update to the correct, live versions.

5. Promote your top pages and content

And of course, you can’t go wrong with continuing to build your backlink profile through good old fashioned link building. By building more quality links from authoritative sites, you can continue to influence your DA.  

Why shouldn’t you obsess about Domain Authority?

In the past few years, I have purchased several SEO gigs on Fiverr. Most aimed at improving the link profile by adding more backlinks to the site. It is common to find gigs on Fiverr and other market places that guarantee to increase your DA to 50+ in less than 30 days.

Some of these gigs have thousands of reviews, making people believe that they actually work. Suppose you are obsessed with increasing your domain authority. The most important question to ask your self is, ‘What is your end-goal?’

Domain authority is an indicator of success, but it doesn’t drive success. Google does not use domain authority, and it doesn’t have any direct impact on your rankings. Increasing DA solely to increase your DA is pointless vanity.


You can’t fake real authority; theoretically, it is impossible to manipulate domain authority. All of us have been inundated with e-mail pitches that sell backlinks for a price. If you are planning to buy those links, please spend that money on something more meaningful, like content creation.

Do the groundwork that is required to build real authority to move the needle both in terms of improving domain authority and traffic. It seems a lot harder in short-terms and pays off dividends for years. Don’t just get into the game of tracking another vanity metric.

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