Why does some lower Authority Score websites rank higher?

by @seomagix (190), 1 year ago

Hey everyone, I am trying to help some people with their website ranking. The problem is when I look at their top competitors, their rankings don't really make sense.

The number 1 ranked competitor has an authority score of 13/100 with 40 backlinks, only one of them has an authority score of 54, and the rest is below 20... 6.5k visits a month

The competitor number 2 has an AS of 22/100 with 119 backlinks of general better quality 17k monthly visits

The competitor number 3 has an AD of 33/100, with 8k backlinks, some good ones but a lot aren't as great. A 3k monthly visit.

Why isn't the page with 8k backlinks with a AS of 33 not number 1? Or the #2 with a lot of traffic, a higher AS (22), more backlinks, with better quality backlinks ? Why doesn't the ranking makes sense?

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by @Gamerseo (1330), 1 year ago

Backlinks are not everything. One of the most important factors is the quality of the content on the website. Also pay attention to the quality and topic of backlinks, not their quantity.

by @ms (4012), 1 year ago

It doesn't make sense, because we don't have exact formula.

Anyway, as already pointed out by @Gamerseo, while links are super important today, it's not the only metric. Links alone are not worth much when you're content is weak. Could be also seen as an outlier (normally, quality content get quality backlinks) so it could indicate link buying/selling etc.

You better keep it up on all fronts mixing great content with high quality references.

by @seomagix (190), 1 year ago

I guess I was mistaken in one way, a high Authority score does not mean that you will rank higher is that correct? I am still confused with why the competitor 1 arrives in first position, it has lower quality backlinks, no content on it (just presenting the business), the competitor 2 should be ahead by all metrics on my book. But maybe they got a crazy high bounce rate who knows. The third one makes sense tho cause a lot of shitty backlinks.

by @ms (4012), 1 year ago

Competitor 2 could be fairly new in the SERP, so maybe he is on his way to the top position. Who knows...

Anyway, you're definitely right with this one: > a high Authority score does not mean that you will rank higher

Can't emphasize this enough. Authority score is approximation, based on how SemRush thinks Google formula looks like. The thing is they don't know because they can't know. So it's their best, fairly educated, yet still just guess. Even if we knew all the variables (we likely know most of the signals, if not all of them), we still don't know weights. Therefore, each and every rank and score is a guesstimate.

Serp Solace
by @Serp Solace (110), 1 year ago

It is always better to have less but extremely high quality links. The first guy probably has extremely high quality PBN, guest post or niche edit links. He probably also has better content or on-page seo.

by @digiupdates (130), 1 year ago

Well for google the content mean more than the High DA/DR or PA of a website. If your website has a high matrix but the content is very low quality then google will never show it in SERP.

by @jaap (1667), 1 year ago

Relevant excellent content is King. Also, optimize your title and description tag. CTR is an important factor to rank higher A high CTR shows SE you offer relevant content if you don't spoil it with a high bounce rate :-).

by @binayjha (4999), 1 year ago

There are more than 200 parameters plus the combinations of them, which impact search engine ranking. The final ranking is decided by the resultant of all effecting parameters applied. For example, traffic to a webpage is a parameter, a web page with a very high traffic with no SEO applied can rank higher than a webpage with a good SEO score.

The pages with lower ranking needs more overall SEO efforts to improve.

by @zarrahfelton (144), 1 year ago

Backlinks are the number 1 factor for google ranking, but when the google algorithm change in 2022. More valuable, more user-intent articles or blogs are now the number 1 factor for google ranking. When users search and get their answers to their questions.

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