What is Domain Authority and Why is it Important?

What is Domain Authority and Why is it Important?

In an ever-growing competitive marketplace that sees businesses needing to assert themselves as recognisable brands providing value at any opportunity, websites are important.

Domain Authority is one contributing factor to an organisation’s digital success, and here we’ll talk you through the ins and outs of what it is, and how it can be utilised to further boost your company’s online presence and visibility.

What is Domain Authority?

Domain Authority (often abbreviated to just DA) is a ranking score that judges how likely a website is to rank in search engine result pages, as well as how high within them. The concept of a Domain Authority as well as the calculations behind it were developed by Moz.

A Domain Authority score ranges from 1-100 – with the higher scores corresponding to a greater likelihood of ranking, and ranking well.

DA  is calculated using data from Moz’s Link Explorer web index, which considers dozens of factors through its automated analytic algorithms. This includes the analysis of many on and off-site components including accessibility, content quality, site responsiveness and authenticity through backlinks.

Correlating this data with the real-time rankings of relevant search results, a Domain Authority score is calculated and presented.

Who are Moz?

Moz is a US-based company who specialise in SEO software and were founded in the early 00s. Now best known for their development of the Domain Authority, this scoring system is used worldwide and is considered an industry standard from which to judge a baseline for the SEO development of business’ websites.

Once a Domain Authority has been provided, improvements to the website can be made without further interaction or involvement from Moz themselves – until the business returns to check back on how their score has (hopefully) improved.

Moz are not affiliated directly with Google or any other search engine but instead utilise their Domain Authority programming as a piece of shareable content from which to glean traffic and exposure of their own brand; a great demonstration of a well-known SEO tactic!

How is DA Relevant to SEO?

While Domain Authority doesn’t provide an exact ranking based on Google’s algorithms themselves, it does give a good indication of the likelihood to rank on both that and other search engines, and helps demonstrate a correlation between SEO activities and the performance of the site.

DA is not, therefore, a direct contributing factor to SEO but does give focus to areas for improvement which will impact on SERP (Search Engine Results Page) ranking.

Businesses focusing on improving their Domain Authority will need to put into action practical SEO efforts in order to achieve progress. This means that, generally speaking, an increasing Domain Authority score indicates an improving SEO performance.

How Do You Build Domain Authority?

To build and increase a DA score, there are several areas of focus a business can work on. This includes, but is by no means limited to:

    • The continued effort to obtain high-quality backlinks from relevant websites that are trusted and authoritative
    • Creating and publishing quality content to the site that users consider high enough value to share onwards with others
    • Auditing the website to remove or repair any broken links
    • Optimising the website structure to ensure a great user experience (UX) and appropriate accessibility and responsiveness.

All of these activities are already considered good SEO and in order to achieve a high and steady SERP ranking, should be worked on continuously; and not (as is so often just assumed by middle management) completed as a one-off task.

What is Considered a Good Domain Authority?

Domain Authority scores are ranked between 1-100, with 100 being the best. Broadly speaking, the scores sit as follows:

    • 1-20 – poor
    • 20-30 – below average
    • 30-40 – average
    • 40-50 – good
    • 60-70 – very good
    • 70+ – excellent.

While of course, a score of 70 or above is the most desired, it isn’t necessarily what businesses should aim for right away. Instead, the baseline should be that of the best competitor, and then developing higher. It is worth noting that getting a score over 20 takes work and effort to achieve.

A website’s Domain Authority and SEO ranking are both impacted by the age of a domain; meaning that if a site is new, its score will start off at zero before growing and may not necessarily be deemed as ‘poor’ or ‘above average’ on its content and structure merit alone, just age.

What Are The Benefits of Increased Domain Authority?

Increasing Domain Authority scoring indicates an improving SEO ranking, developing visibility and exposure to a relevant target audience online.

However, a Domain Authority score that is considered good in the relevant industry does open up other opportunities too – including the likelihood of approach by third parties looking to collaborate on content and the increased possibility of paid-for adverts or placements to be made on the site. A high Domain Authority garners both respect and a perception of professional reliability and authority.

Where Can I Find My Domain Authority Score, and Learn How to Increase It?

There are several websites online that allow businesses to look up the DA score of websites for free – and while this may indeed be helpful, it is often not foundation enough from which to plan a comprehensive strategy for work. Instead, it is recommended that businesses work with an effective SEO partner to ensure the development and growth of their score with relevant activities and focus.

Woya Digital’s team of SEO specialists enact bespoke growth tactics with every client to best optimise their online presence and to nurture their Domain Authority upwards. Want to learn more on your business’ DA and how to boost it to increase visibility and performance online? Get in touch, and let’s get to work!

How Many Words Should a Web Page Have for SEO

How Many Words Should a Web Page Have for SEO

Businesses must work hard to ensure that their web content and digital presence ranks in the right places online for those looking for relevant terms, products and services through search engines (which themselves are ever-evolving and increasingly crowding as more and more online content is published.)

The exact requirements for ranking on search engines in the appropriate results change all the time as the scope of their algorithm and programming develops and improves, but one crucial factor for SEO remains: copy content – the written text on a web page.

Writers, marketers and content creators frequently find themselves faced with briefs for increasingly long copywriting jobs in order to best stand out amongst digital competitors and meet best practice requirements for SEO – but does ‘the more the merrier’ rule really work for search engines, or does quality rule over quantity?

How SEO Works

Search engines work as simple matching machines for those typing in a query to them – matching up what it thinks is relevant content to the term/s entered. SEO, or Search Engine Optimisation, is the practice of optimising online content in order for the algorithms behind search engines to recognise it as appropriate and of a sufficient quality in order for it rank highly when a relevant search query is made.

There are three main parts to SEO: the optimisation of the content on websites (organic content), the improvement of the overall user experience of websites (technical) and the usage of paid-for advertising on search engines (ads).

When SEO is written or talked about, it is usually referred to in terms of optimising websites for the algorithm behind Google. As the world’s biggest search engine, it holds an almost 92% market share and so for many is the primary focus before other, more localised search engine services are investigated into.

Optimising Content for Search Engines

For content on a website to be best understood for SEO, it should be clear, held in good context and relevant to the product, service, brand or theme of the website. For most websites, this means hosting content all in one language/dialect, all on a theme or appropriate topic, and written with clear and correct spelling and grammar. Although the programming behind search engines is automated and is entirely computer-based, it is now more accurate than ever.

The latest Google update, BERT (the Bidirectional Encoder Representation) is based on neuro-linguistic programming practices and so is as currently close to human interpretation as possible – so although some common sense should be used in the creation of copy, if a human could understand it, chances are the machine now will too.

How Many Words Should a Web Page Have For Good SEO?

No one knows the exact sweet spot for perfect SEO ranking – and indeed given that indications show the algorithm is updated and tweaked daily, even if they did, it wouldn’t be sustainable or appropriate for long. It has long been suspected that word counts of 1000+ words are best placed to rank well on search engines as this amount gives plenty of context alongside a comprehensive explanation of the topic to those users reading it. This was reflected for many years as high-ranking pages tended to sway toward more longform content compared to shorter, more brief copy.

However, as the Google algorithms have developed and improved in their AI, so too have the requirements for SEO. Now, with smarter programming, search engines are able to comprehend and compute what a website is about and the quality of its content through a lower sample size.

This doesn’t necessarily mean that the requirement for good SEO drops from a 1000+ word count to 800+ or even 500+, but rather that the algorithm switches its focus from quantity to quality. Comparisons of content between high-ranking and low-ranking websites no longer evidence such disparity in the lengths of text provided, but rather in the quality of such text alongside several other ranking factors. This means that the best thing publishers of content online can do is ensure it is of high quality, relevant to the site’s topic and easy-to-read.

Keyword Optimisation

The easiest way to demonstrate the relevant of content to a search engine for SEO purposes is to include the use of appropriate keywords or key terms within it. Keywords and key terms are the words or related words typed into search engines by users when they make a query, meaning the query input is easily matched with a resultant page if their usage is consistent.

Keywords can be researched using a variety of keyword tools but their use within text on a page should be natural and appropriate. It is critical that their use makes sense within the context of the copy and that they remain appropriate to the topic being discussed. Keyword ‘stuffing’, that is, the practice of using as many keywords as possible in text without considering the appropriateness of them, will result in negative SEO and will see pages penalised and ranked down on search engine results pages.

Other SEO Factors

Although content is an important factor on websites, it is no longer the only feature on which a search engine will judge its relevance or prevalence. Webmasters must ensure that their sites are easy-to-navigate, accessible on a range of devices, fast-to-load and that they deliver an all-round positive user experience throughout in order to rank well in SEO terms. There are numerous technical aspects of a website that are taken into consideration alongside the relevance and quality of the text featured and so these too must be optimised.

For support with your business SEO, spanning organic content, technical management and advertising, get in touch with the Woya Digital team. We’re always on-hand to help advise and make recommendations for improvement to help gain competitive advantage and rank as high as possible throughout all relevant search engines.

Business Website Hosting and Security

Business Website Hosting and Security

As digital marketing experts, the Woya Digital team knows that just about every business in every market, in every sector in the world needs a website. Not just any old website either – it needs to function correctly, be safe and secure, and provide a fantastic user experience!

So what happens:

  • If your website crashes?
  • If you lose all of your sales records?
  • If your client information is hacked?
  • If your website stops loading properly?

With so many hosting services, competitive rates and technical terminology, a vast number of businesses are faced with a conundrum when trying to work out the best way to manage their website – with the risk of a business-critical disaster if something goes wrong. Never fear!

We’ve put together this simple guide to explain everything you need to know about your business website hosting, security, and how you can get the best value for money (pssst it’s definitely not in the bargain basement hosting services category!).

Any burning questions we haven’t answered – give us a call or drop us an enquiry.

Building a Business Website

So, we get it – you need a website, it needs to be sparkly and bright, and you needed it yesterday! And there are a tonne of cheap offers out there, but just like a budget airline there are a million add-ons:

  • Hosting
  • Security
  • Upgrades
  • Online forms
  • Support Packages
  • Image Rights
  • Reports and 24/7 Monitoring

Unless you happen to be an IT whizz, a lot of it doesn’t necessarily make sense; and do you know what you are actually paying for? Is it really essential – if you’re on a tight budget, isn’t it tempting to click ‘no thanks’ and crack on with your brand new website launch?

We’ll stop right there; because it is so easily done, and is absolutely not the right call.

It’s easy to justify the cost of building a new website because you have something tangible to show for it at the end. And it’s just as easy to justify not paying for all of those pesky add-ons because they aren’t something you can see, and appear to be a quick way for a hosting company to make a few extra bucks.

But, the issue here is that hosting and security is vital, and is just as important as the style of your website itself. These factors make sure your new site stays online, is accessible to all of your valued customers, and critically – is safe to use.

With our years of webdesign experience managing business website relaunches for clients who have come unstuck due to poor site security, this guide is designed to make sure you know where the pitfalls are, and make sure to steer well clear of them!

Business Website Hosting – The FAQs

Let’s start at the beginning (skip down to the more technical stuff if you’re familiar with this!).

  • What is website hosting?

Your host is as it sounds; it’s the place on a server where your website ‘lives’ – and unless you have a vast organisation, it is very likely to be home to many other websites too.

  • What has bandwidth got to do with business website hosting?

As well as a slightly annoying workload term, bandwidth means space on the server. The problem here is that if a server tries to house too many sites at the same time, or hosts lots of spammy, bad-quality sites, this can be detrimental to the performance of your website.

For example, the site speed might be affected, or your site may crash – if the server crashes, all of its hosted sites go right down beside it, just without the violins.

  • Why does my website hosting service affect my site speed?

On the average business website, hosting is often the most crucial factor when it comes to site speed.

This all depends on how many sites are being hosted at once, how modern the servers are, and therefore – the cheaper the website hosting service, the more vulnerable your website.

Top Tips for Secure Website Hosting Services

All those potential pitfalls in mind, here are our top tips to make sure you choose the right hosting service!

  1. BEWARE of cheap hosting!

If it seems too good to be true, it probably is.

Your website is critical to your business, and paying for proper hosting is an investment in the future longevity of your digital presence.

  1. Keep an eye out for downtime.

Most server companies don’t monitor your site continuously, and won’t necessarily warn you if your site is down, or the site speed is slow.

Very often, businesses find out about this the worst possible way; when a customer calls and can’t complete their order, or when investigating the need for tumbleweed blowing over their weekly sales figures. You can check out your site speed yourself via Pingdom, to see for yourself how smoothly your website is functioning.

  1. Check how your website has been built.

WordPress is a popular choice; because it’s cheap, easy to use, and everybody is familiar with it.

However, if you want a super-fast site, it might not be your best choice because it isn’t naturally the best website format for quick loading speed.

In that case, you can optimise the speed in a few ways:

  • Set up automatic platform updates
  • Invest in advanced security add ons
  • Use a plugin manager to deal with daily updates
  • Hire a developer to optimise your site layout
  • Switch to a premium hosting service
  • Optimise your images with smaller sizes that load faster
  • Use a content delivery network (CDN)

Or, you can consult an expert when building your website to get a bespoke service that does exactly what you need it to do, right from the word go.

How Can I Guarantee my Hosting Service is up to Scratch?

The answer is simple – if you want a decent hosting service that is going to be an asset to your business, the key is to work with a digital expert.

At Woya, every client has the benefit of a premium hosting service – because we know how important your website is to your business. Premium hosting is worth its weight in gold (and if you’ve ever had to crisis manage a website crash, you’ll know what we mean!) – it includes benefits such as:

  • A fully managed hosting service.
  • Fast and secure loading speeds and connections.
  • Full back-up for immediate information recovery.
  • Dedicated support, so you know instantly if your site crashes.
  • Rapid responses and 24/7 support to manage problems efficiently.

Poor quality hosting leaves you vulnerable to security breaches, loss of business and crawling loading speeds that will see the most patient customer flick over to Insta for a bit of light relief. Premium hosting, in contrast, offers a lightning fast, modern service with complete oversight and control to provide your customers with the best possible digital experience.

The Lowdown on Back-ups, Updates and Business Website Security

You don’t need us to explain that updates are essential!

Software changes at the spur of the moment, and if you don’t keep up to date with updates, your site is NOT secure. It sounds simple, but it is a widespread problem that thousands of businesses run into – and often only notice when a security issue becomes severe.

35% of the internet is powered by WordPress but, of those sites, 49% are not on the latest version of WordPress. Even worse, 33% are at least 2 versions behind. When most of the updates are about security, this is quite a worrying set of facts!

A few things to mention about back-ups and website security:

  • A working website isn’t just one piece of software; it’s lots of widgets, add-ons, plugins, apps and parts of technology all functioning together like a jigsaw puzzle.
  • For example, if you use a WordPress website, that is just one component, not the whole website.
  • With a lot of services, daily updates aren’t unheard of – and it is beyond imperative to keep up to date with those, at the risk of exposing site security issues, or having pieces of software that stop working together correctly.

Online security is a massive challenge for millions of businesses, and the impact of poor site security can destroy healthy companies:

  • If your website is hacked, it can be disastrous.
  • Websites might display warnings to customers wanting to make a purchase.
  • Sales fall off a cliff, as nobody is going to enter their credit card details in a security-compromised website.
  • Information, data, and confidential company details can be stolen.

Digital security is just as important as locking your front door at night, and we have helped thousands of clients who didn’t know how vulnerable their business was to hackers – until the unthinkable happened.

How to Safeguard Business Website Security

You wouldn’t leave your warehouse doors open, your car keys in the ignition, or your petty cash tin out next to an open window, right!

Inadequate website security is just as dangerous as any of those things – and in some cases, much more so if you have commercially sensitive information or customer data exposed to criminal access.

  • Robust security means that your site is protected – and in the modern era, goodness knows there is no limit to the number of predators who hack business websites to blackmail and extort their owners.
  • Malware can be inserted into a weak website security system, making it part of a larger scam, and in some cases is simply created to cause disruption and chaos.
  • Phishing is something we’re all too aware of and means hackers break down security systems to steal credit card details or sensitive information.

All told, the impacts of poor site security can be catastrophic. There are, fortunately, lots of things you can do to protect your digital assets!

  1. Make regular back-ups. This sounds like another administrative task to add to your workload – but it’s time well spent.

Regular back-ups mean that your site functions well, that all your software pieces in the jigsaw puzzle keep communicating and working together properly, and that, crucially, your security is kept up to date.

We carry out daily back-ups on all client sites, to not one but two different sources. This may sound like overkill, but we have the absolute confidence that if a problem ever occurs – for whatever reason – we’ll get your site back up and running correctly within a matter of minutes!

  1. Take a copy of your website. Again, sounds maybe a little unnecessary? Not so.

If you take a copy of your website once it’s been built, if you have any problems with your hosting service, or need to find a replacement sharpish, you can take it anywhere you need to and have your site hosted and back live again.

Expert Support with Business Website Hosting and Security

In a nutshell – your website might just be the one most valuable asset to your business.

Many businesses spend a great deal of time and money on having an excellent website built, but don’t realise that without good quality hosting and diligent management, that might be time and money down the drain.

  • Don’t presume that your website is safe, or isn’t a target, because you aren’t a financial institution or a major company. Millions of small businesses suffer the consequences of hacking, security theft and data breaches every day (one every 19 seconds, to be exact!).
  • WordPress might be the most popular platform in the world, but their updates are mandatory, not optional – and if you don’t stay on top of updates, some parts of your website might fail, or become a new security risk.
  • Any site that isn’t updated regularly, and however often updates are released for each piece of component software, is vulnerable and exposed.

If you’re worried about your website performance, know that you could improve your digital presence but don’t know how, or would like to switch your business website hosting and security to an expert team who have your back day or night, give us a call!

Woya Digital is a fast-moving, technologically advanced and creative digital marketing agency that works with a huge range of companies to help them remain at the forefront of dynamic modern business! We design fantastic websites, have an outstanding track record in driving growth through targeted SEO, and can help with every aspect of managing and marketing your business in a way that delivers tangible results.