When someone goes searching on the Internet for a product or service your business offers, what do you hope they find? You probably want them to not only be directed towards your website, but you also want them to trust what they’re seeing enough to follow through on the purchase, right? So how do you make that happen and maintain trust throughout the search flow? Below, Virtual Market Advantage will go over a few steps to help you build your domain trust flow for your website!
What is MozTrust?
MozTrust is Moz website’s global trust score. It’s a measure used to rank the trustworthiness of all the websites connected to yours through links. This is important, because receiving links from sources with a large amount of trust is a strong trust endorsement for the linked-to website.
This MozTrust score is determined by calculating the distance between a given page and a trusted source. The best way to understand this is by looking at degrees of separation. Have you every played the 6 Degrees of Separation game with your friends to see how closely you are connected to a celebrity? If your website links to another website and that website links to yet another site with an amazing score, you're separated from the trusty site by 2 degrees of separation. The closer you are linked to a trusted website, the more trust your website will have too. There’s no set good or bad MozTrust score numbers, but having a higher number on the 0-10 scale usually means that you’re more trustworthy overall, based on links pointing to a page, your subdomain, or root domain.
What is Google TrustRank?
Google TrustRank helps Google as well as other search engines fight against Internet spam. TrustRank, originally created by Yahoo! and Stanford engineers, measures something called your website’s 'trust signals.' These trust signals help evaluate whether or not your core ranking signals are legitimate. What does this mean? Google upranks websites that they trust, and they measure that overall trust in their algorithm using TrustRank.
TrustRank is basically a filter that Google uses to see if your links and content are trustworthy. If you pass the TrustRank with a high score, you pass the filter. Should your trust fall too low, the signals are seen as illegitimate and your website may be blocked. You really want Google to see your site as a trustworthy resource, and if they do not, your rankings will suffer pretty heavily. Although the algorithms are complex, your TrustRank score is partly determined by your MozTrust score.
Steps for Building Your TrustRank and MozTrust Scores
Here are a few key points to keep in mind if you want to improve your trustworthiness in the eyes of the search engines:
On-Page Trust Optimization
You first need to generate on-page trust for your site. To do this, you'll need to do a couple of things. First, make sure you link out to authoritative sites, and keep in mind that the sites you link to reflect back on your site. Spread the link to .edu, .gov, and other authoritative sites early and often.
Watch your bounceback and blocked sites. Google’s algorithm now takes these user interactions into account as a ranking factor.
Consider having a list of resources and references cited at the ends of certain articles or blogs on your website. This shows Google that your content is well-researched and therefore trustworthy.
Look and Act Like a Big Brand
Google has been big on brands lately. To benefit from this trend, make sure you’re building brand signals. Google is just a site-ranking machine, not a group of discerning people, so it only knows that something is a brand because of online brand signals. Google seem to take brands very seriously, because it puts a lot of trust in established brands.
To build your brand signal, make sure you have a very thorough “About Us” page, and be active in your social media accounts. All big brands take these steps to help establish their online presence. To ensure that your site gets a branded search, work on building really strong backlinks, and try to get people to search for your brand in Google.
Have an Established Domain
Make sure you register your domain for 2 or more years. Google wants to see that you’re in this for the long haul. Even though there’s much debate about whether or not this really helps your SEO, it can’t hurt to have a long-established domain.
Have a Business Address
Make sure your address is public and easily found by the people who are looking. To make this even more trustworthy, you should put that info on the front page of your website. Your business seems much more trustworthy if you have an actual business address, and there are other SEO benefits as well (learn more about the benefits of having a business address here).
Get Those Trusted Links
Google hand picks some trusted sites and gives them a 10/10 TrustRank. These types of sites are known as seed sites, and are pages that include many .gov’s , .edu's, and even NYTimes.com. You clearly want to get linked directly from sites like this, but you can still get some of that trust by getting links from other sites that have their links from seed sites as well (a second degree of separation). You want the sites that link back to you to be highly trusted sites already.
Google News Site Backlinks
According to Google, Google-approved news sites are some of the most trusted on the Internet, so it makes sense to attempt to link back to those. If you think about it, news sites should be trustworthy, since they’re theoretically giving us the news, not just opinion. For a site to be included on Google news, it must go through a lot of tests before it gets approved. So if you can link your site to one of those, all of the trust tests are already done for you. This can be hard to do, as you have to make sure you put something out there that’s trustworthy and linkable in the first place.
As with most good SEO practices, these are steps that take time, and the results will not happen overnight. If you take these steps one at a time and make sure you link to trustworthy sites, you’ll see your TrustRank and MozTrust scores climb in the long run. To keep these scores high, you’ll continually need to perform the steps listed above and update your site. Be consistent and honest with your audience, and you will see your domain trust flow rise!
If you want to learn more about becoming a trustworthy marketer or business owner on the Internet, check out Virtual Market Advantage’s other blog on that topic here!