How to use “website authority”
Here are two good uses cases:
1. Benchmarking against your competitors
If your website “authority” is higher than that of your competitors, then your site is stronger than theirs in terms of “link popularity.”
For example, ahrefs.com has a Domain Rating of 88. Moz.com has a Domain Rating of 91.
That’s because it has more backlinks from websites with strong link profiles, which leads to a higher “authority” score (as measured by Ahrefs).
TIP. If two websites have the same Domain Rating, then you should use Ahrefs Rank (AR) to judge their relative strength.
Comparing your Domain Rating to other websites in your industry can tell you whether your competitors are doing better or worse than you. If they’re doing better, then you may want to analyze their backlink profile in Ahrefs Site Explorer for untapped link opportunities.
2. Vetting link prospects
Google cares more about the “strength” of the linking page than that of the linking domain. Still, pages on high “authority” domains tend to be stronger than those on low “authority” sites.
For that reason, Ahrefs’ Domain Rating is a good proxy by which to judge the relative quality of link prospects.
Still, never judge the quality of a website on site-wide “authority” alone.
You should also consider the following:
Do they have high-quality backlinks?
Do they have lots of pages? (fewer is usually better)
Do they link out to a lot of websites? (again, fewer tends to be better)
Are they publishing high-quality content?
Is this website likely to still be around in six months? A year? Five years?
Does it get any organic traffic? Is this website topically-relevant to yours?
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