Off-Page SEO

Domain Trust

Shahid Maqbool

By Shahid Maqbool
On Jun 6, 2023

Domain Trust

What is Domain Trust?

Domain trust is a measure of the credibility and reliability of a website in the eyes of search engines. It can be viewed from a user’s perspective also, but we focus more on the search engine because it has to rank the website.

To achieve a high position in SERPs, a website must have trustworthy content that is free from spam and provides accurate information.

However, there is no specific formula or scale for calculating domain trust. It depends on various factors and is evaluated by search engines.

Background of domain trust

When Google first introduced PageRank, a website's trustworthiness was largely based on the number of backlinks it had.

However, Google later refined its approach and began evaluating domain trust based on factors such as link quality and other considerations.

At the time, PageRank scores ranged from 0 to 10, with 0 representing the lowest and 10 the highest level of trust.

Today, while PageRank still plays a role, Google does not disclose the specific methodology it uses to determine a website's trust or value.

However, certain factors are widely believed to contribute to a website's trustworthiness and search engine ranking and should be considered when building a website.

Importance of domain trust

Gaining domain trust is important because it directly affects your ranking. In fact, both trust and rank are directly proportional to each other, i.e. more domain trust, better ranking. Moreover, it can give you large traffic and more exposure.

In a nutshell, gaining domain trust provides all the benefits associated with a high ranking in SERPs.

What determines domain trust?

There are several important areas that a website can focus on to increase domain trust and improve its ranking in search engines.

Content quality

Content quality is the first thing that you should focus on to make your site trustworthy and reliable. The best quality content must contain something unique, original, and interesting.

You can elaborate on the information by using infographics, charts, reports, etc. Moreover, introducing new tools or apps for more help can work well for high quality.

When it comes to textual information, it is important to ensure that it is free of grammatical errors and well-structured to engage readers.

Furthermore, it should not be copied from other websites and pasted onto your own site.

Quality of backlinks

Backlinks are the votes of confidence in a page that has trustworthy and high-quality content. If a credible and highly-ranked site gives you this vote, you will likely rank well and build trust.

Conversely, a backlink from a low-quality website will not necessarily harm your ranking, but it will not contribute to building domain trust.

Moreover, the quantity of backlinks is not a factor that search engines consider while ranking a website. It is all about the quality of incoming backlinks to your website. 

No spam

When we talk about creating quality content, it simply means that one should avoid spamming. However, some websites can present the content of another site as their own.

Usually, this happens when a high-authority website steals the content of a low-authority website and takes advantage of a comparatively higher rank.

Search engines are more likely to crawl and index the web pages of high-authority websites first, assuming that the content belongs to them.

If content theft is detected, the affected website can take legal action and penalize the offending website for engaging in spammy behaviour.

User’s satisfaction

If a website's content, navigation, loading speed, and other services are satisfactory to users, the website will be viewed as reliable by search engines. This will result in a higher ranking and a positive impact on domain trust.

Does domain age count for domain trust?

While searching about domain trust, you will find many SEOs who believe that domain age also plays a crucial role in building trust.

They say the older the domain is, the more trustworthy it will be. Unfortunately, it is not like that because domain age has nothing to do with domain trust or ranking.

Google’s Search Advocate, John Mueller, replies to a tweet and clarifies it:

John Mueller on domain age


Domain trust is a measure of a website's credibility and reliability in the eyes of search engines. It is determined by factors such as content quality, the quality of backlinks, and user satisfaction.

Focusing on these factors can help build a trustworthy and reliable website that ranks higher in SERPs.

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