Domain Authority: Is It A Google Ranking Factor?

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Many business and marketers believe that Domain Authority is a big offer.

There are guides all over about how you can improve your website’s Domain Authority for better rankings in search results page.

However does a higher Domain Authority actually result in much better rankings?

In this chapter, we will explore what Domain Authority is and the proof regarding whether it is a Google ranking factor.

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What Is Domain Authority?

To comprehend whether Domain Authority is a part of the Google algorithm, first, we must understand what Domain Authority is.

Initially, there is domain authority– the principle– and Domain Authority (DA), the metric by Moz.

As VentureSkies describes it, the basic definition of domain authority is as follows:

“The domain authority of a website describes how essential the website is for a particular targeted discipline [and] importance with respect to … search words.”

Then, there’s Moz’s Domain Authority or DA score, which specifies the metric as “… an online search engine ranking score established by Moz that anticipates how most likely a website is to rank in search engine result pages (SERPs).”

Domain Authority by Moz is computed using dozens of elements, consisting of the variety of linking root domains and the total variety of links. Ball game itself is shown on a 100-point scale.

It deserves keeping in mind that Moz is not the only SEO platform that has established a metric for determining site authority. You will likewise find that:

  • Ahrefs has an Ahrefs Rank and Domain Ranking. AR ranks sites in the Ahrefs database by the size and quality of their backlinks, while Domain Rating shows the strength of a website’s backlink profile compared to others in the Ahrefs database on a 100-point scale.
  • Semrush has an Authority Score that determines the total quality and SEO performance of a domain or webpage.
  • Majestic has Circulation Metric Ratings that measure the variety of links a website has and the quality of the website’s material.

The Claim: Domain Authority As A Ranking Aspect

Numerous short articles going over Domain Authority refer to it as an online search engine ranking rating and suggest it is an excellent predictor of how well a site will carry out in SERPs for targeted keyword phrases.

This can lead some to believe that Domain Authority is a ranking aspect for search engines like Google.

There is even a fascinating Buy Twitter Verification thread in 2020 from the co-founder of Moz, Rand Fishkin, showing internal files from Google, recommending Google does have a domain authority-like metric.

However continue reading– the evidence ends up being clear.

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Domain Authority As A Ranking Aspect: The Evidence

Moz’s website states its Domain Authority rating does not effect Google search engine result.

“Domain Authority is not a Google ranking aspect and has no effect on the SERPs.”

In 2015, Gary Illyes, Chief of Sunlight and Joy at Google, was asked about authority passing from HTTP to HTTPS. His response:

“We do not have “authority”, however signals must pass on, yes.”

In 2016, Illyes responded to a concern about whether including or removing pages from a site affected its domain authority.

“so, my problem is that I don’t understand of anything in ranking that would equate to “domain authority”, so can’t answer”

A few weeks later, during a discussion about connecting to image files or webpages for an effect on domain authority, Illyes responded:

“We do not truly have ‘general domain authority’. A text relate to anchor text is much better though”

From there, you will discover lots of verifications from John Mueller, Browse Supporter at Google, that Domain Authority exists but that Google doesn’t use it.

In December 2016, Mueller reacted to a remark about a desktop domain having greater authority.

“Google does not utilize ‘domain authority'”

In 2018, somebody asked if Domain Authority existed on a Reddit AMA with Mueller.

Mueller’s reaction acknowledged that:

“Naturally it exists, it’s a tool by Moz.”

Later that year, when asked on Buy Twitter Verification if Domain Authority existed– once again– Mueller reacted:

“‘Domain Authority (DA) is a search engine ranking rating developed by Moz’ so exists = yes. Search engines do not utilize it.”

In 2019, when inquired about a site-wide metric comparable to Domain Authority on Buy Twitter Verification, Mueller responded to:

“We do not utilize domain authority. We generally try to have our metrics as granular as possible, in some cases that’s not so easy, in which case we look at things a bit wider (eg, we’ve talked about this in concerns to a few of the older quality updates).”

Later that year, a Buy Twitter Verification user asked if a drop in search engine traffic was because of a loss in Domain Authority. Mueller replied:

“We don’t utilize domain authority, that’s a metric from an SEO company. I ‘d suggest beginning a thread in the aid online forum with the information, including the URLs & questions you’re seeing changes in.”

In 2020, Mueller received another concern about domain authority. This time, somebody asked if backlinks from high domain authority websites matter in website rankings. His reaction:

“We do not use domain authority at all in our algorithms.”

A couple of months later, Mueller was asked how important Domain Authority was to crawling websites faster on Buy Twitter Verification.

“Just to be clear, Google doesn’t use Domain Authority * at all * when it pertains to Browse crawling, indexing, or ranking. This is quite clear on their site.

We do, however, index tweets that discuss it.”

Up up until that point, Google representatives appear clear that there is no use of Domain Authority. However, in a late 2020 interview with SearchLove, Mueller was quizzed on whether Google had a domain authority-like metric.

Unlike the ones before, this response mean a possible DA-like metric in Google’s algorithm.

“I do not know if I ‘d call it authority like that, however we do have some metrics that are more on a website level, some metrics that are more on a page level, and some of those site-wide level metrics might kind of map into similar things.”

In 2022, Mueller answered another question about Domain Authority on Reddit. The question was how to increase a site with a Domain Authority of 31. Mueller responded to:

“I’m kinda torn. On the one hand, you do not require DA for Google Browse. Google does not utilize it * at all *. If you ‘d like to level your site up in search, you ‘d require to focus on something else, or a minimum of utilize other metrics for it. This is primarily why DA as a metric is frowned upon by numerous SEOs. For context, I do not think I have actually ever looked up the DA for a site in the 14 years I have actually been doing this.”

He used additional recommendations on how one might enhance a domain’s authority by concentrating on a subject with low competitors and producing “… an affordable collection of fantastic content” about that topic.

He emphasized that user signals, not any type of authority score, would be what moves the needle.

[Advised Read:] Google Ranking Elements: Fact or Fiction

Domain Authority As A Ranking Signal: Our Verdict

Domain Authority (DA) by Moz is similar to Domain Rank (DR) by Ahrefs, the Semrush Authority Rating, and Circulation Metric Scores by Majestic. They are all authority metrics computed by third-party tools that have no actual effect on online search engine rankings.

While Mueller when suggested that Google has metrics that map into comparable things as Domain Authority, he has repeatedly rejected using Domain Authority by Moz on Buy Twitter Verification and Reddit.

He also noted that they do not call anything they do internally “domain authority.”

Therefore, we can conclude that Domain Authority is absolutely not a ranking factor.

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