Blogging and Writing

Generating Backlinks and Boosting Domain Authority

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If you aren’t trying to grow your blog out there in the world, this post will be completely irrelevant. This is a newer version/compilation of a couple of posts I’ve done before on building backlinks to your blog and domain authority.

What is domain authority?

Domain authority (DA) is a scoring system that was developed by Moz, a major search engine optimization (SEO) company.  You can read more on their page What Is Domain Authority?  It’s meant to reflect how well each website is likely to do in search engine rankings.

DA scores range from 1-100.  They use a logarithmic scale, meaning that the difference between 80 and 90 is way bigger than the difference between 0 and 10.  Moz bases the score on a number of factors, but from what I can tell, the biggest factor is links, and especially backlinks, which are from other sites pointing back to yours. Since I started writing this post, Moz has just finally started recognizing my internal links, and if they’re looking at my site, it probably means they’ll start noticing any links I might have pointing your way.

DA matters most if you’re trying to get sponsored posts and that kind of thing. Your site’s DA isn’t a secret between you and Moz; anyone can look it up. If your blog has a yourblog.wordpress.com URL, you won’t be given your own DA; it just gets lumped in with the overall DA of the WordPress.com domain.

Backlinks

While DA specifically matters for sponsored posts and the like, it indirectly reflects how well your site may do on Google. Google likes backlinks, but they seem to pay a whole lot more attention to what’s actually on your site than Moz does.

What’s probably most interesting to the average non-monetizing blogger isn’t the DA number, but rather the who’s who of sites that are linking to your blog. You can get this info from a number of places, including Moz, Ahrefs, and SEMRush. They’ll all tell you slightly different things, because to find out that sites X, Y, and Z are linking to your site, they don’t get that information from visiting your blog; they get it if/when they happen to swing by X, Y, and/or Z.

Ways to build backlinks

There’s only so much control you have over creating backlinks to your site. Some marketers do blogger outreach to try to get people to link to their sites. Social media shares make a difference. You might not think of Mix (and does anyone actually use Mix?), but they seem to be a favourable source of links. There are also some sources of links that you can control, so let’s have a look at those.

  • Do quick posts on buymeacoffee.com and/or Ko-fi linking back to your site. Even if you’re not looking for coffee donations, it’s a good way to get links pointing to particular posts/pages you’ want people to see on your site. Google Images also seems to like images on coffee site posts. After I changed the URL on my buymeacoffee page, my DA dropped by one point shortly thereafter as it didn’t find the new URL right away.
  • Contently lets you create a portfolio of your work, and you can include links to some of your favourite blog posts.
  • Create a Linktree putting all your links (including your blog) in one place.
  • Goodreads can be a source of backlink action. When I post reviews there, I write at the bottom “this post originally appeared on [link to post].” Leaving reviews on popular books seems to be the way to get your link noticed.
  • Listly is a list creation site. You can include links to your own content as well as things located elsewhere on the internet.
  • Want to tell WordPress developers what’s broken in the block editor? Github is the place to do it. You create a profile with your blog URL, and create or comment on a pull request. Boom, you’ve got yourself a 96 DA backlink. It’s a little more sophisticated than ranting to the happiness engineers, but this is the hangout for people who actually solve broken editor code problems as opposed to trying to fix your problem for you.

Over to you

I know that getting a DA to budge seems just short of impossible. Hopefully some of these ideas will be useful to you. Do you have any link sources of choice that you’d like to share?

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30 thoughts on “Generating Backlinks and Boosting Domain Authority”

  1. Wow, you’re such a genius!! My eyes glazed over!! You’re most definitely my go-to person for this sort of thing, but… [shaking my head]… I seriously doubt I could ever have a mind for it!! It would be awesome if you could somehow monetize your internet knowledge! Seriously, to me, it’s like Greek.

      1. No, I think you really have a mindset for it. Seriously, there are things that my mind can grasp with time and things it can’t! It would really be awesome if you could make money at this! I really don’t think most people know or are able to grasp all this stuff!!

            1. You’re probably right! πŸ™‚ I just always admire when other people have unique areas of intelligence!! I’m sure we all have such areas!!

  2. You’ve given a lot of great examples here! I can see why SEO is a long-term game. I’ve put stuff onto Mix, Medium, Contently, and many of the others you described. Some of them I did months ago. But Moz is just picking up on stuff now. Within the last couple of weeks, I went from a Moz DA of 3 to 7. Google Search Console shows them a lot faster, which is comforting, but it’s still missing a lot of links I know are out there.

  3. Thanks, for some of us, it may not be useful now but will be in the future. I decided that if I do a little professional job hunt writing I will make a whole new blog. I will still post stuff here, of course, but I just don’t want potential professional visitors seeing articles about my LSD past and all that jazz :). Got to separate that chocolate and peanut butter! Your articles in this vein will prove valuable if I ever get well enough to launch that other site.

  4. This is a fantastic resource, exactly the kind of thing I wish I’d seen as a new blogger to get my head around it all. I’ve already learned something new though – I’ve seen Buymeacoffee things on blogs and social media, but I didn’t know you could do posts on the website or get do-follow backlinks from there. That’s pretty handy. xx

  5. Guest posts linking back to the writer’s blog is a great way – I miss writing guest posts for other blogs, i’ve found some amazing people through them. Would be nice if there was a directory of blogs that accept guest posts. Will keep this post safe so i can come back to it and check out all the other platforms. Thanks Ashley!

  6. All interesting ideas.

    I’ve heard that verifying site ownership on Google helps a ton with the search engines, but I’m not quite sure how to download the right file in the right place so I can do this.

      1. Thanks Ashley! I verified my blog on a number of platforms this evening.

        It sounds like the analytics from these tools I have access to, now that my site is verified, will really help me in the SEO department. Or, that’s my understanding of things.

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