Website authority is often used interchangeably with domain authority. Website authority is definitively intertwined with Google and is the overall reputation and ranking of your website as compared to other websites about the same subject matter.
Domain or website authority is not something that is earned quickly. It takes time, knowledge, and a conscious vested effort to establish authority in your field. Think of it as building your personal reputation or a reputation for a business. You know that one good deed isn’t going to solidify your reputation. Instead, it is the overarching summation of your hard work. Your website authority works the same way.
How to Improve Website Authority
Domain authority directly impacts your rankings. Improving your authority score will improve your ranking, making your content easier for potential clients and customers to find. To improve your overall website authority, you must first understand the factors that determine your authority score.
When discussing website authority, there are three levels that contribute to your overall authority. Each one is essential in its own right and as it contributes to the whole of your site. They are:
- Page authority
- Link authority
- Domain authority
Google uses over 200 factors when determining the search engine result pages (SERP), and many of those factors are proprietary. Google does not share all the factors it uses in rating websites with the general public. However, if you have any familiarity with search engine optimization (SEO), you have probably heard of Google’s E.A.T acronym.
- Expertise—Is the creator of content on your site an expert on the topic? Though credentials to back up the expertise are considered, if that information is available on the website, a recently updated version of Google’s guidelines allows for an exception for “everyday expertise.” In other words, Google takes relevant life experience into account for specific topics.
- Authoritativeness—Is the primary content creator a trusted source recognized as a thought leader in their industry?
- Trustworthiness—Trustworthiness is a compilation of things, including the website’s quality and the reliability of the content to provide consistent, high-quality, and accurate information.
Keyword research is crucial to on-page SEO. The goal of keyword research is to learn what your target audience is searching for and what efforts it will take to rank for those keywords. Targeting the right keywords, and doing so in a manner that boosts your authority, is crucial to improving your SERP. Keywords and target phrases are also essential for link building. When researched and done correctly, target keywords and phrases will result in high-value backlinks.
Google strives to bring quality results and is continuously monitoring a variety of brand signals to help determine the sites that offer a positive user experience. One of the ways they can do that is by monitoring Google reviews. Review signals are especially crucial if you do local business.
Great content alone cannot build authority or improve your SERP. The user experience is a powerful metric that determines how users perceive your website. If the experience is negative, and today’s internet users have high standards, they will not stay on your website very long.
The expectations for a company’s website include:
- Fresh, reliable content
- Visual appeal
- Ease of use—can users find what they are looking for quickly and efficiently
- Fast load speeds and a streamlined interface
A positive user experience helps establish a relationship based on trust and reliability. When the user finds their experience (UX) to be helpful, customized, and enjoyable it will result in an increase in engagement, conversions, and overall increased customer satisfaction.
Understanding Domain Authority
Domain or website authority is usually seen as a score and should serve as a comparative metric. You do not need the highest score possible, but you do need a score higher than that of your competition. The tools outlined above will serve to improve your overall website authority when applied consistently.
Achieving and maintaining website authority also means:
- consistent monitoring of the health of your link profile
- creating frequent compelling and engaging content
- adding visual appeal to your website
- focusing on driving organic traffic to your site
Ultimately, your website’s domain authority takes time to build, and in the ever-changing digital landscape, there is never a good time to hit the cruise control. Whether you have reached your goals or are just starting out, your digital presence will need constant work to keep your brand voice alive and competitive.