Let’s say you run an exceptional but pricey blog. You spent your entire budget on the best content writers and web developers. Still, you don’t get enough traffic, and your Google rank is dismal. Even worse? Amateur bloggers with less remarkable sites perform better and attract more visitors.
So, what are you doing wrong?
The answer may lie in your low domain rating score. Websites with a high domain rating generate more traffic and, subsequently, bring more revenue from visitors. If your blog is underperforming, it may be getting the wrong end of the stick.
What a low domain rating looks like. Source: Ahrefs.
Fortunately, there are simple ways to boost your domain rating and earn more from your blog. Today, I’ll show you what domain rating is, why it’s crucial and how to make it work in your favor.
First off, let’s clear the air on one of the most common confusions in website management – the difference between domain authority (DA) and domain rating (DR).
Many beginners mistake DA for DR and vice-versa. And that’s entirely understandable. Both of them are metrics that SEO-tool providers have created to help rank websites according to some of the calculations in the Google ranking algorithm. However, they are not the same thing.
Domain Authority is a domain score developed by Moz to predict a website’s chances of ranking on search engine result pages (SERPs). The DA score ranges from 1 to 100. The highest mark represents a site’s best ability to rank better.
Domain Rating is a metric tool developed by Ahrefs to gauge your website’s backlink profile. To do so, it considers your internal and external links and subdomains. The final DR score is an image of how your site compares to similar domains in terms of linking strategy.
So, what is domain rating?
Ahrefs’ domain rating is very different from domain authority. Your domain rating score depends on how powerful your website’s backlinks are compared to other sites in the Ahrefs database on a 100-point scale.
Three factors influence your domain rating score:
Lastly, DR is algorithmic, which means that climbing up the rating ladder is different depending on your starting position. For instance, it is easier to get from Level 10 to Level 20 than it is to get from Level 79 to Level 80.
According to Ahrefs, there is no clear evidence that domain rating, domain authority, or any kind of domain power would be an influential factor in search engine rankings.
Nevertheless, it is difficult to imagine that two websites delivering the same information, but one having a solid backlink profile and the other none, would rank similarly on search engine results pages (SERPs).
In fact, research shows that the average click-through rate (CTR) for the first place position in Google is currently 43.32 percent. Conversely, the 10th position has only a 3.11 percent chance of being clicked on by searchers.
As you can see, the difference is more than substantial. What does it mean?
It means that the higher your DR is, the higher the chance Google will place it at the top of the list on the first page of search results.
Having one of the top positions on a SERP brings you more visitors. In turn, you have access to higher ad revenue and more profitable ways of monetizing your website.
Domain rating plays a significant role in how your website is perceived by both search engines and visitors. Below are 7 proven tactics on how to boost your domain rating and enhance domain authority.
If you’re pondering how to improve domain rating, you cannot do better than publishing high-quality content with consistency.
When visitors land on your website for the first time, they will make a judgment call in less than a minute. Remember that people browse the internet looking for answers. So, your content has to provide them with solutions to their queries quickly and effectively.
Premium quality content is informative, educational and full of valuable statistics. How does that help improve your DR?
As your website grows, it becomes an extensive online library of trustworthy information. People do not only come to it often, but they also share links to it with others. Additionally, other websites link back to you as a source of authoritative intelligence.
If you are just starting your blogging career, remember to never publish low-quality content. Also, if you have an old, low-performing blog, you can always repurpose content to increase domain rating.
Your website may have some of the best pieces of content on the internet. However, other sites won’t link back to it if they don’t know it exists.
One of the best ways of increasing your domain rating is by pitching “linking collaborations” to other, more authoritative websites. Here are some of the sites you should consider:
Approach these sources with a professional, confident pitch. Also, talk favorably about other content they have on their website. This way, you show that you are up-to-date with their kind of content.
Next, you should talk about your piece of content and explain what makes it worthwhile. Remember that these sites might receive thousands of requests like these every month. So, your pitch has to be spot on to secure an article on their website.
According to a study from Statista, over 6.3 billion people use a smartphone right now. By 2026, the number of smartphone subscriptions worldwide should increase by 1.5 billion. So, having a mobile-friendly website is no longer a choice. It’s a must.
Source: Number of smartphone subscriptions worldwide from 2016 to 2026 (in millions), Statista.
Your website has to be easily accessible on everything from desktop computers to smartphones and tablets. Otherwise, you lose a great deal of traffic and authority. Moreso, Google could penalize your site’s lack of responsiveness. As a result, you will have a low domain rating score.
Take the time to ensure that your website offers the same experience on all types of devices. Also, you can go a step further by making it accessible to people with disabilities. Use a widget to help disabled visitors change font sizes, contrast and more.
All content pieces are created equal, but some are more equal than others. That is to say, you may have numerous articles on your website but only a handful are your most compelling pieces or the ones that you want to attract more visitors.
A great thing about the Ahrefs domain rating checker is that it also gives you a score for your site’s URL Rating (UR). This metric is based on backlinks like the DR is. However, it doesn’t measure the quantity and quality of links from another website to yours. Instead, UR studies these factors for individual pages.
So, make sure that you connect your articles through helpful links. Internal linking can provide visitors with effective portals between informative sources of education. This step is crucial in learning how to increase domain rating.
Besides being high-quality and well-documented, your content has to answer the most probable questions about the topic at hand.
Now, a domain rating tool may not help you much here. Instead, your best choice is to use a free keyword research and content ideas tool like Answer the Public.
This website is a great visual tool that covers every question ever asked online about almost every relevant topic. Also, it is easy to use even for beginners. All you need to do is type in a keyword and discover what people are asking about it.
Next, you can use the results to tweak your content so it answers the most popular questions online.
If you are wondering how to increase your domain rating, you should look at diversifying content exposure. For instance, one of the many factors that influence ranking on a search engine is high-volume search terms.
Simply put, people should get more than just one link to your blog with a simple search query. And, you can obtain that by having video versions of your articles on YouTube. Alternatively, you can discuss them with other guests on podcasts.
This way, when users search for your content, they find it in multiple formats. In the end, your domain should increase its reputation, and subsequently, its DR.
Most of a domain’s authority is built on organic search engine traffic, which you can achieve with high-quality content worth sharing.
Of course, you can hope to rely on your most loyal readers for social media shares. However, you can boost their efforts by posting your content directly to social media platforms yourself.
Create accounts on the most popular social media channels like YouTube, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to retell your story in a different format. On these platforms, you can post everything from videos and images to comments and audio jingles.
Transform your content to make it accessible for people using social media. More signals from these platforms should boost your domain rating score and increase site authority.