What in the heck are domain authority (DA) and page authority (PA)? I think the better question, how does domain authority and page authority affect your website’s search performance?

This is a very common question clients and marketers ask every day. They are also key metrics we use to measure a site’s growth and search engine optimization effectiveness.

PA and DA is a predictive measurement system made by the industry leading SEO platform Moz.

They are graded between 1 and 100, this score is a prediction on how your website and its pages will perform in search results. The algorithms crawl your website, its backlinks, and content similar to a Google spider and then rank them.


Domain Authority is a performance score for your entire domain

Domain Authority is based on data from the Mozscape web index and includes link counts, MozRank and MozTrust scores, and dozens of other factors (more than 40 in total). The actual Domain Authority calculation itself uses a machine learning model to predictively find a “best fit” algorithm that most closely correlates Mozscape data with rankings across thousands of actual search results that we use as standards to scale against.

Websites that are just starting begin at 1. These are new domains minimal history or ones that owners have let expire. As you build quality backlinks and referring domains, you’ll see this score start to rise.

Moz does an update once a month right now. And that information is available on their website here.

The Moz algorithm works very similar to how Google PageRank used to work. It takes into account quantity but prefers quality and high-value backlinks and content over all else.


How can you influence Domain Authority?

You can influence Domain Authority quickly two ways; search engine optimization and content.

From an SEO perspective, your content and pages need to be easy to find, optimized and performing well in the eyes your users. Backlinks are also a component that carries heavy influence.


Remember it’s not just the quantity of backlinks. It’s the type, the quality and the influence of the domain the link is coming from. You also want a variance of backlinks:

  • Anchor Text (exact match, partial match, branded, generic)
  • Images & Infographics
  • Guest Posting
  • Article Submissions
  • Local Listings
  • Forum Comments
  • And ‘nofollow’

You should also target high-quality domains. Having high-quality domains pointing to your website does two things; It tells them that the landing page is an authority page. This will allow backlinks to register faster because they crawl these websites regularly.


And how about the Page Authority?

You can calculate Page Authority the same way as Domain Authority, but at the individual page level. Page Authority is based off data from the Mozscape web index and includes link counts, MozRank and MozTrust scores, and dozens of other factors (more than 40 in total). Importantly, it does not take into consideration specific on-page elements like keyword use or content optimization.

If you’re struggling to increase your domain score, focusing on the page ranks will often help influence the overall score. This is one of the reasons that we focus on popular individual pages and products first.