What is domain authority and how to grow it

What Is Domain Authority & How To Grow It: Illustrated Guide

You’re all dressed up and ready to hit the most exclusive nightclub in the city.

You’ve heard the music is legendary, the atmosphere electric, and the VIP section? Simply sublime.

But there’s a catch. The bouncer at the door only lets in folks with that special vibe, that irresistible allure.

You look around and see an exclusive club of websites partying on Google’s first search page.

They’ve got something you want: Domain Authority (DA). Want to be part of that in-crowd and boost your website’s chances of getting past Google’s discerning bouncer?

Stick around, and let’s turn you into the life of the search engine party.

Key Takeaways (TLDR)

  • Domain Authority (DA) is a score to predict how well a website will rank on search engines.
  • A high DA score increases a website’s chances of being on Google’s first page.
  • Factors that affect DA include quality content, on-page SEO, and backlinks.
  • Social signals play a role in DA; being active on social media helps increase this.
  • Boosting DA is like going from a nobody at a club to a recognized VIP.

What is Domain Authority and Why Should You Care?

Domain Authority is like your credit score but for your website. Developed by Moz, it is a useful metric that predicts how well a website’s domain authority will rank on search engines. It’s also known as Domain Rank by AHREFS. The score ranges from 1 to 100—the higher, the better your website authority is.

Think of Google as that VIP club everyone wants to get into. The higher your DA score, the more likely the bouncer—uh, I mean the Google Algorithm—is to let you into the coveted first-page club.

What is Domain Authority? Google 1st Page Club

Websites with High Domain Authority websites are like Celebrities. As you move towards the back of the line, people keep getting less famous until you are at the very end, where you find the people who are at the club for the first time in their life.

Or they’ve been at the back of the line forever and never got inside. Don’t be that guy.

Now, why should you care? Well, 75% of users never scroll past the first page of the search engine results page. So if you aren’t near the front of the line, Google doesn’t know who you are, and they don’t care, and neither do the people at the front of the line.

That’s right, my friend. Three-quarters of folks won’t even know you exist if you’re chilling on page two or beyond. The millions of websites are still waiting outside in what seems like a never-ending line.

The 5 Factors That Affect Your Domain Authority

1. Quality Content

Having quality content is like having a great personality, one that, when you speak, people are interested in what you have to say. It’s a personality that is honest with nothing to hide but has depth and culture.

Great, high-quality content has a great personality; with time, it will naturally increase the keyword rankings. The better your personality (content) gets over time, the higher domain authority you’ll gain, and more people will naturally be attracted to it.

What is Domain Authority - Quality Content Week 1
What is Domain Authority - Quality Content Week 4

But it can, at times, be very, very slow.

What is Domain Authority - Quality Content Week 24

How to Execute

Creating high-quality content is like creating a great personality that everyone likes. It’s not something you can fake. It doesn’t have to be unique. You have to create quality content that is original.

You can’t just waltz up to people acting like you are someone else. People will know immediately, and so will Google’s algorithm.

What is Domain Authority - Fake or Unoriginal Content

The best way is to figure out your niche, your personal, authentic brand. Focus on that to build up your topical domain authority. Your topical domain authority is like your unique personality and style, for which people start to know you. It becomes something solid and undeniable.

2. On-Page SEO

This is your basic presentation and how you look, which signals to Google that you belong in the club.

If you are dressed right, the Google bouncer will have no problem talking to you. However, if you aren’t dressed for the occasion, the bouncer (Google Algorithm) might not even bother giving you a second of his time.

What is Domain Authority - On Page SEO - Looking the part.

How to Execute

Make sure your website has all those basic requirements to enter the club. You must dress the part even if you aren’t getting in yet. That means making sure your website looks clean and organized.

It’s optimized for mobile display, has all the alt tags, and doesn’t have many missing pages and all that basic SEO stuff. It’s like having missing buttons or a stain on your jacket.

3. Backlinks

Backlinks are like people in the line. It’s not only about how many people you know but how many people you know who are closer to the front of the line.

Having a backlink from a high DA website is having someone famous call you out in a crowd. You get that instant clout that comes with it. But it’s not like they will invite you to join them yet.

What is Domain Authority - Backlinks - step 1

But word of it spreads, and others recognize that your clout (domain authority/page authority) is growing.

What is Domain Authority - Backlinks - Step 2

And because you’ve been growing your clout (domain authority) every time you come back to the club (post new content), people start recognizing you and inviting you to cut in line where you belong.

What is Domain Authority - Backlinks - Step 3

And the bouncer (Google Algorithm) is starting to notice it, and he’s keeping notes, slowly recognizing your face more and more.

What is Domain Authority - Backlinks - Google Recognizes Us

How to Execute: Guest Posting

On the other hand, Guest Post is like going around making friends so that people slowly start to know you and introduce you to more people.

What is Domain Authority - Backlinks - Guest Posting

It’s not easy, and just like at the club, it requires hard work, persistence, and a bit of courage. But with enough effort, you’ll start working your way up the line.

How To Execute: Buying Backlinks

Buying backlinks is just like buying clout. You are paying someone to pretend that they know you. But like the example above, they don’t necessarily invite you to join them at their place in the line.

What is Domain Authority - Backlinks - Buying Backlinks

But there are exceptions to the rule. If you are rolling in cash at the club, it will likely work faster than other methods, but it’ll require a lot of cash.

And it will get more expensive when you try to buy friends closer to the front line.

What is Domain Authority - Backlinks - Buying Back Links Big Money

If you whip out the wallet and start making it rain down cash, people will recognize you, and with enough people cozying up to you, you’ll get into the club sooner rather than later.

That is, as long as you still look the part and have a decent personality. Remember that backlinks are just one of the four key ranking factors, but it’s not the only one.

What is Domain Authority - Backlinks - Buying Backlinks isn't enough

But if you aren’t rolling in dough, it’s more sensible to buy your way up the line a little at a time.

Think of it like a video game. Sure, you can go in and try to slay the final boss right off the bat. You’ll probably get some XP, but you will likely die a lot and take much longer to get past him.

What is Domain Authority - Backlinks - Final Boss

But if you use your money wisely and buy good quality backlinks from websites whose level (domain authority) is just slightly above yours, you’ll level up your domain authority scores much quicker than take the boss head-on when you are still weak with a low domain name authority score.

What is Domain Authority - Backlinks - Low DA grunts

4. Social Signals

These are like just positive rumors going around about you. The more people are talking about you, the more you become recognizable. Like social circles, you can become popular among all the people at the back of the line, but as more people recognize you, the more likely someone at the front will call you up.

What is Domain Authority - Social Signals

How to Execute

Be active on social media, engage with your audience, and use social buttons on your website.

Key Considerations

  • Slow Burn: Climbing the DA ladder is like seasoning a good cocktail—it takes time, so don’t rush.
  • Celeb Over Crowd: One endorsement from Beyoncé trumps a dozen from unknowns. Quality over quantity.
  • Watch the Door: Regularly check who’s linking to you. As you gain popularity, other domains will start trying to ride off your growth, and they will start linking to you and, at worst, spam it across their site.


In a nutshell, boosting your search engine rankings through your Domain Authority score is like upgrading your nightclub status from that guy at the back of the line yelling “I know the DJ” and no one takes you seriously to being at the front of the line where you say the “DJ knows me” and no one questions it. “Yes, of course, please, sir, right this way. Welcome to the Google’s First Page Club. Enjoy your time here.” and you say, “Thanks. Don’t mind if I do.”

Frequently Asked Questions

What does domain authority mean?

Domain Authority (DA) is your VIP status at Google’s First Page Club. Developed by Moz, a score ranging from 1 to 100 predicts how likely you are to get past Mr. Algorithm, the bouncer, and into the exclusive first-page VIP area. The higher your score, the better your chances of being visible in Google’s search results, much like a high-roller getting the best seat in the club.

What is a good domain authority score?

Let’s say your website’s authority has a DA of 70. In nightclubs, this is like having a Platinum VIP Card. You’ve got good content (stellar personality), quality backlinks (a crowd of people who are fans of you), and solid on-page SEO (you’re dressed to impress). With a DA of 70, Mr. Algorithm will likely let you bypass the line and head straight to Google’s First Page Club VIP section—Page One.

Is 20 domain authority good?

A DA of 20 is like being a newcomer to the nightclub scene. You’re not a total unknown, but you’re far from a VIP. You’re still hanging out near the back at this level, maybe getting an occasional nod from Mr. Algorithm. While not terrible, there’s plenty of room for improvement to make it to the VIP lounge.

Is 25 domain authority good?

A DA of 25 means you’re starting to catch the bouncer’s eye. You’ve got some groove, maybe even a couple of good moves, but you’re still largely a wallflower in the grand scheme of Google’s First Page Club. It’s better than a 20, but still not enough to secure you that sought-after spot on the first page—aka the VIP section of the digital nightclub.

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