Building up a website’s “authority” has been a focus of web marketers since Google rolled out their first algorithm built around links. Prior to that, SEOs focused almost exclusively on keyword optimization of content, but Google changed the game.
Of course, back then it was simply about grabbing as many links as possible, but that was, in a way, all about building up the site’s authority through link volume.
The algorithms don’t work that way anymore as the raw number of links only has a little to do with building up a site’s authority. But while raw links matter less, website authority is still hugely important to the overall success of a website online, including the ability of that site to achieve top search engine rankings!
Today, website authority (and rankings) are built not just through keyword optimization but by generating relevant links, building your brand, exercising social media engagement, having a great content strategy in place, ensuring you have a stellar on-site experience, well-crafted site messaging, and unsurpassed customer service.
Phew! That all makes link building look easy.
And that was kind of the point with Google changing the focus from links as site authority to site authority as site authority. Links are easily manipulated, whereas all that other stuff, well, it takes a great deal of work. And the authority all that generates isn’t done by virtue of checking something off a list but by making sure it connects with your audience.
Taking the time to (properly) build up a website’s authority by the means noted above offers huge advantages. The more time you spend building authority, the more opportunity you have to draw in targeted traffic and please your customers, which in turn helps generate word of mouth and even more authority!
Keyword optimization plays an important role, but don’t focus on Google or any other search engine. Instead, think about what you can do to provide value to your customers. Focusing on that will be a primary factor in any increase in search engine rankings.
Focusing on both optimizing your website and building website authority leads to increased exposure, click-thrus and customers. Website authority actually becomes somewhat circular. You build authority, which helps increase rankings, which helps increase authority. But be sure you take advantage of that authority by doing a better job of meeting customer’s needs. Which, coincidentally, helps build even more website authority!