Similar to Neo within the Matrix, we SEO professionals look past the visage of the webpage and see them as binary buildings, all of the typical attributes – doors, windows, dimensions etc. I am going to give you the same options as Morpheus gave Neo, take the blue pill, wake up in your bed, in your ordinary existence. Take the red pill, remain in SEO land and I will show you how deep this rabbit hole goes. I am going to reveal the world that has been pulled over your eyes to blind you from the truth.
View websites as buildings and search engine results as the city they reside in.
Let’s go up, and observe the world below, let me Google something for you here. These are the results you would acquire in the event you type into Google, the keywords “World View”, this is what we call the 1000ft view. Should you look just below the search bar, you are likely to see that Google has retrieved roughly 460 million results. These results are all websites and just as you might want to open up a shop in London, you may opt to open up your shop here, within the search results of World View. The first two results we see are Wikipedia and YouTube, you could say that these are classified as the skyscrapers of World View.
To help determine whether it is useful to rank among the search results of World View, we can use a tool called Google Insights. If we use the link here we can see the number of people searching “World View” every month and from where. This information is essential in order to decide whether it is lucrative for you to rank here. Consider this information as being the number of people who walk past your shop, the same kind of scenario you have to consider in opening up a brick and mortar store.
How can we SEO’s determine the size of a website? How can we tell that Wikipedia and YouTube are the skyscrapers of these search results, other than the fact that they reside at the top level of the search list? We are able to see these metrics through a tool that uses an algorithm similar to the one invented by Google co-founder, Larry Page. For more information on Page Rank see here. I’m going to give you this tool from SEOmoz, install it and Google search World View again.
“I’m trying to free your mind, Neo. But I can only show you the door. You’re the one that has to walk through it.”
Further down the rabbit hole we go, to street level. This is what many people call the 100ft view, we can take a closer look at the website’s around us – using the tool we installed earlier – we see that each site has a page and domain weight. This adds to my credence that when we do SEO we should view websites as buildings. We now have the metrics we need to give these buildings dimensions and weight. If we look at the top result of Wikipedia we can see that they have a PA – Page Authority – of 82 and a DA – Domain Authority – of 100. Should you read the Page Rank article I linked to earlier, it becomes evident how Wikipedia have the maximum domain authority, a high page authority and why they sit at the pinnacle of World View.
Domain authority is calculated by how many links point to the root of your domain, so for instance, getting 10,000 links from 200 websites would significantly improve your domain weight. It’s also worth noting that having different domains pointing to your site is better than having, say, 200 links from 1 domain. Page authority is calculated by the number of links there are pointed to a sub-domain of a website such as http://wikipedia.org/subdomain. Generally, in most cases, the root domain would have the highest Page Authority. Of course, other factors come in to play when websites are ranked in search results, including domain name, how old that domain name is, domain trust and how the content is.
Welcome to The Matrix Neo.
With these metrics, we can piece together a mental image of how these websites would look in a 3 dimension virtual environment. Page Authority being the height and Domain Authority being the area or footprint of the website. This new outlook on the way we traverse the internet will allow you to more accurately judge the quality of a website.
Posted by: Joss Earl
Jun 26, 2012