Since Google announced that PageRank Score and PageRank toolbar would not be updated, the SEO agencies across the globe were on a lookout for an alternative to the popular tool. Mozbar, which uses Moz’s internal metrics to rate websites based on Domain Authority scores ranging from 0-100, became a quick winner in the space vacated by the PageRank Toolbar.
The big announcement to pull the plug on PageRank metrics and its toolbar was made by Matt Cutts while answering one of my queries back in 2013. The popularity of the PageRank among the site owners and SEOs was also the result of the data coming straight from the horse’s mouth.
Even though the Moz Bar and its Domain Authority metrics have become popular, they are not immune to criticisms. Moz has been facing several questions about how websites manipulate backlinks to get the undue spike in their DA. Another major criticism raised against Moz’s Domain Authority metrics was about its failure to cope with the latest Google Algorithm updates.
Moz has finally decided to answer all the criticisms against its popular site metrics in the form of an improved and updated iteration of Domain Authority – the DA 2.0.
The new Domain Authority model with added features will be rolled out on March 5th and according to Moz, the latest version of its DA will present more accurate data and display the true potential of websites. Overall, the new update is aligned towards mimicking how Google rates the domains.
Moz is trying to achieve this by integrating its two important features- Spam Score and Moz Link Explorer to a Machine Learning-based Domain Authority Model.
Moz also cautions that the March 5th update can cause major fluctuations in the Domain Authority of websites across all niches. It also recommends SEOs and Agencies to keep their clients informed about the update as they might either see a drop in DA or an improvement. In spite of the changes, Moz says, the data provided by the new Domain Authority will be more accurate.
Let’s look at some of the impending changes and features that will be present when Moz rolls out its new Domain Authority metrics
Training Set: According to the announcement made by Russ Jones, Principal Search Scientist at Moz, the Domain Authority 2.0 will be more efficient in finding sites that are not ranking for any keywords.
Training Algorithms: The earlier version of Domain Authority was susceptible to link manipulations. It is a known fact that many websites got undue DA score due to the lapse of Moz’s algorithm in detecting link manipulation. Jones says that DA 2.0 has been tailored to find link manipulation as it now works on a neural network.
The model factors: Moz also claims that its new Domain Authority metrics is based on an advanced machine-learned model that has incorporated a number of new factors including its proprietary Spam Score.
Link Inventory: One of the biggest advantages of Moz’s Domain Authority metrics is its link index. According to Jones, the Domain Authority 2.0 will be powered by the data retrieved from more than 35 trillion links. This according to him, will help in displaying more accurate and brilliant data to the users.
What are the key takeaway?
If you are an SEO consultant or Specialist, it is important to keep your clients informed about the new Domain Authority update. The DA 2.0 will provide SEOs better search metrics but the initial days could see a lot of ups and downs in the scores of current DA and PA. Even though Moz says the latest update will not overtly override the existing metrics, they confirm that with new feature additions, fluctuation on DA is iminent.
How to go about in the future?
The latest iteration of Domain Authority is indirectly pointing at the inaccuracies in the existing version of Domain Authority, which is used by many SEOs as the primary search metric. Moz themselves has confirmed that the Domain Authority scores are relative rather than absolute.
“First, make sure that you use Domain Authority as a relative metric. Domain Authority is meaningless when it isn’t compared to other sites. What matters isn’t whether your site drops or increases — it’s whether it drops or increases relative to your competitors,” says Russ Jones, Principal Search Scientist at Moz.
Domain Authority to Follow Google’s Suite
The announcement of the new version of Domain Authority is also an indication that Moz will try to replicate Google’s practice by updating the DA algorithm regularly. The reason for the ranking fluctuations in the DA is due to the failure of Moz to update its Domain Authority Algorithm constantly. The new version of Domain Authority is slated to be foolproof against major Google algorithm updates like Penguin and Panda.