Total Page Authority: What are Page Authority, Domain Authority and Total Page Authority?

Total Page Authority includes the Page Authority and the Domain Authority as calculated by Moz. Until early 2015, we used to prefer Google’s PageRank to calculate Total Page Reputation as Google uses PageRank rather than Moz metrics to determine positioning of webpages in Google’s results pages. From May 2015 we have switched to Moz scores as updates on PageRank are no longer forthcoming.

Total Page Authority provides an excellent indication of keywords that are in reach for top page positioning on Googe for a website.

family-law-solicitors-Manchester-TPA[1]In this example, ‘law’ and ‘family law’ are in the red zone – top page positioning on Google for a small or medium size business website would not be achievable.

‘Family law solicitors’ and ‘family law solicitors London’ are in the blue zone. Link power building would be required to achieve top page positioning.


Page Repuation was initially indicated by Google as the PageRank of a webpage. PageRank was determined by the total value of the link power of all the links to the page within the Google index. Google was the first search engine to include user information (at that time links on websites to other webpages) to influence positioning in search results pages for keywords. The best indication we had of Domain Authority from Google was the PageRank of the HomePage. Although PageRank remains a crucial part of the Google algorithm, from December 2013 Google discontinued providing updates to the public. PageRank is explained here:-

Moz (previously SEOMoz) provides Page Authority and Domain Authority scores. In contrast to PageRank, Moz authority scores, in addition to pure link value data, includes other metrics.

Moz Page Authority predicts the non-keyword competitive strength of a webpage for search engines. It includes MozRank, MozTrust and dozens of other factors. Moz has a machine learning ability continuosly tested for thousands of search results.

Total Page Authority (Domain Authority + Page Authority v Total Page Reputation

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Domain Authority

“Domain Authority represents Moz’s best prediction for how a website will perform in search engine rankings. You can use Domain Authority when comparing one site to another or tracking the “competitive strength” of your website over time. Moz calculates this metric by combining all of its other link metrics—linking root domains, number of total links, MozRank, MozTrust, etc.—into a single score.”

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Domain Authority


To paraphrase Moz:

To figure out Domain Authority, Moz employs machine learning against Google’s algorithm to best determine how the search engine outcomes are generated. For this reason, it’s best to make use of Domain Authority as a competitive metric versus other websites as opposed to a historic measure of your internal SEO efforts.

How is Domain Authority Calculated?

Domain Authority is scored on a 100-point, logarithmic scale. Hence, it would be a lot easier to grow your website’s rating from 20 to 30 than it would be to grow from 70 to 80.

Domain Authority vs. Page Authority

Whereas Domain Authority determines the predictive ranking strength of whole domains or subdomains, Page Authority measures the strength of individual page. The same is true for metrics such as MozRank and MozTrust.

Where can you Find Domain Authority?

Domain Authority metrics are included many SEO and internet marketing platforms throughout the Internet.

You can find Domain Authority on Open Site Explorer or the MozBar, Moz’s complimentary SEO toolbar which is available on Firefox. Moz includes Authority metrics into all Moz Analytics campaigns, along with the Mozscape API.

Technical Definition of Domain Authority

Domain Authority is Moz’s computed metric for how well a domain is likely to rank in Google’s search engine result. It is based on information from the Mozscape internet index and includes link counts, MozRank and MozTrust ratings, and dozens of other factors. It makes use of a machine learning to discover an algorithm that best fits with rankings thousands of actual search results.

Moz recommends the use of Page Authority (PA) and Domain Authority (DA) as comparative metrics when studying in the search results page and figuring out which sites/pages may have more powerful/important link profiles than others. While particular metrics including MozRank can address questions of raw link appeal – and link counts can reveal the raw quantities of pages/sites connecting– the authority numbers are high-level metrics that attempt to answer the concern, “How strong are this page’s links in terms of helping them rank for queries in”.

SEO Best Practice.

How do I influence this metric?

Unlike other SEO metrics, Domain Authority is hard to influence directly. It is made up of an aggregate of metrics (MozRank, MozTrust, link profile, and more) that each have an impact on this score. Moz did this deliberately aiming to best guess how Google accomplishes this.

The very best way to affect this metric is to enhance your total SEO. In particular, you ought to focus on your link profile – which influences MozRank and MozTrust– by getting more links from other popular pages.

Importance of Page and Domain Authority in relation to Google Ranking for Keywords


This table shows the Page Authorities and associtated Domain Authorities of the pages on the top page of Google (1 – 10) for five keywords. PA is the average of the Page Authorities and DA is the average of the Domain Authorities.

TPA – Total Page Authority is the sum of the PA and DA results and is the average Total Page Authority of the webpages on the top page of Google for each keyword. TPA is arguably the best keyword difficulty tool. A webpage needs a TPA in the region of the average TPA of the current top pages to have any chance of top page positioning on Google.

In practice very few websites of SMEs (small and medium sized enterprises) achieve a Domain Authority of 30 or more. A required TPA of 90 or more to compete for a keyword would therefore be out of reach for the majority of SMEs.

Importance of Page and Domain Authority for SEO

Total Page Authority provides an excellent means to determine keywords that are in reach for top page positioining on Google. It also indicates the amount of SEO required to achieve top page positioning for keywords that are in reach for a specific website.

There are many SEO programs and optimisers who suggest that any website can achieve top page positioning on Google for any keyword chose to target. In practice, this is not possible and Total Page Authority requirements show why this is the case. No amount of website and webpage optimisation will achieve success if the webpage concerned does not have sufficient Total Page Authority.

In an excellent article (June 2015), the arguement was put forward that targeting ‘marketing’ is not a good idea as it would be almost impossible to rank for. ‘Inbound marketing case studies’ would be more effective.

inbound-marketing-case-studies-834-ksp[1]An analysis of these two keywords for Total Page Authority requirements confirms that the for ‘marketing’ a TPA of 149 would be required – for an SME this would be like trying to jump over a 15′ brick wall.

The required TPA for ‘inbound marketing case studies’ is lower at 111 – the equivalent of trying to jump over a brick wall of 11′. This keyword might seem more attractive from a feasibility point of view but it is still out of reach for SME websites.

The above analysis can be undertaken manually but it is time consuming. KeywordSEOPro is a program that automates the process.