Attention! – Domain Authority Can Be Hacked In 14 Days
Domain Authority (DA) happens to be one of the most commonly used metrics within the SEO industry to analyse the authority and reputation of a website, particularly after Google dropped its ‘PageRank’ metric. (Internally, Google may be still using PageRank; however PageRank, and all associated patents publicly ceased to be available in 2016).
DA is a website score, ranging from 1 to 100, developed by Moz (SEO Software) that predicts how likely a website will rank in search engine results.
Google does not use DA within their algorithms, but it is commonly used during the SEO link building process. If you can get a link from a high authoritative domain (Genuine High Authoritative Domains) the power of that one backlink is much greater than getting hundreds of links from low authoritative domains. As a result, many SEO’s look for Domain Authority when they reach out to backlinks.
Domain Authority Hack
Recently I found an online service that promises a Domain Authority increase within 14 -21 days or less. I was reluctant to believe that such a metric could be manipulated, but I went ahead and purchased the service for one of my test sites. Note: the test site is only a couple of months old.
The results after 14 days are below.
The site Domain Authority improved significantly from zero to 45 within just 14 days, and even reached up to 52 after few more days.
Impact to Ranking and Search Performance
After 30 days of the Domain Authority improvements, I didn't see any impact to rankings or search impressions. This confirms that the service is just a hack to increase the Domain Authority, a loophole within the DA calculations.
So, How Does it Work?
There are sets of URLS that are redirected to your domain. These are from high authoritative domains - surprisingly, most are Google links!
If you try the below example, you just need to replace the domain name.
In addition to the above, all of the redirected links are manually indexed (there’s no point creating links if you don’t get them indexed!)
What Metrics Were Impacted and How to Find Better Sites?
DA, Page Authority (PA) and Citation Flow are all impacted. However, Trust Flow by Majestic (SEO Backlink Checker & Link Building Tool) is not impacted:
SEMRush Authority Score is also showing an improved Authority Score:
Additional note: Domain Rating history recently introduced by Ahrefs is also a good way to find the history of domains. This can actually help to find reputable websites that have been around for long time.
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About the author:
Tharindu Gunawardana – SEO Manager
Tharindu is a passionate digital marketing and SEO specialist with over 10-years of experience in planning and executing cross-channel digital media campaigns across the Asia Pacific region. When he’s not whipping up SEO strategies, or updating us on the latest Google algorithm update, he enjoys gaming and DIY projects. Connect with Tharindu on LinkedIn and Twitter.