You may have noticed by now that there’s not a lot of info on Moz.com’s MozRank.
And what little bit is available remains scattered across the interwebs.
Yet this score is one of the more powerful and effective metrics for measuring your SEO progress.
So, I’ve decided to give you a complete and concise guide to everything you need to know about the beloved MozRank score.
By the time you’re done reading this, you’ll know exactly what MozRank is, why it’s important, how it works and how to use it to improve your SEO.
Let’s get started.
MozRank: The Only Guide You Need to Find, Use and Improve Your Score
What Is MozRank?
MozRank is surprisingly straightforward in what it is.
It’s a scoring metric created by Moz.com (formerly SEOmoz) that indicates the link popularity of a given page.
In other words:
It measures the number of links pointing to a page, converts that quantity into a numbered rating and assigns that rating to that specific page.
It tells you how popular a page is based on its link quantity.
Defining it is simple enough. But describing how it works? Well, that can be a bit trickier.
How Does MozRank Work?
Truth be told, no one knows exactly how MozRank works (minus certain employees at Moz, and they’re keeping quiet about it).
But over the years marketers have been able to string together pieces of the whole to formulate a solid idea of how MozRank is able to generate its revered scoring system.
Here’s what we know:
MozRank measures the overall popularity of a page
It’s well known that MozRank assigns a numbered rating to a page to represent that page’s popularity based on the number of links pointing back to it.
And most SEO experts agree that the following two factors weigh heavily in the formulation of a page’s MozRank rating:
1. The total number of links pointing back to a page
Exactly what it says. This is the total number of backlinks (i.e. link popularity) that direct traffic to a particular page.
2. The total number of page hits each link contributes to a page
This means the number of visitors a particular link sends to the page it’s linked to. The more visitors directed to a page, the greater the influence that link has on the page’s MozRank.
MozRank is not directly influenced by the quality of a link
This point is still argued about between marketers to this day.
Some marketers believe that link quality does have an effect on MozRank, while others argue that it doesn’t affect it—or, at the very most, has a minimum effect.
I sought answers myself and found a dated (but, as of yet, undisputed) answer to whether link quality impacts a page’s MozRank:
According to Moz’s Dr. Peter J. Meyers, MozRank only looks at the strength of a page’s link profile and not the quality of the individual links.
So it appears that quality has no bearing on MozRank.
But this next part is crucial for you to understand:
MozRank is just one piece of a much larger puzzle that determines where you rank on Google. And there are other pieces that carry more weight.
That being said, MozRank does prove that your backlink portfolio doesn’t need to be filled to the brim with the highest quality backlinks in order for you to see positive results in the search results.
And I’ll show you how to take advantage of this truth in just a bit.
MozRank assigns a score to each page based on its overall popularity
MozRank uses a simple scoring range of 1–10 to communicate the popularity of a page.
A score of 1 represents a page with very few links and page hits…
… whereas a score of 10 represents a page that’s at the peak of its popularity, scoring hundreds (if not thousands) of backlinks and thousands (if not millions) of pageviews per week.
So it goes without saying that the goal is always to have a high MozRank for any given page. Or, at the very least, a MozRank that’s higher than your competition.
Why Is MozRank Important for Your Website?
Here’s where I say something that might surprise you…
A page’s actual MozRank is not important in-and-of-itself.
What’s crucially important is what a page’s MozRank represents.
By now, it should be obvious that a page’s MozRank score is a simplified measure of the number of backlinks pointing back to the page.
So backlinks are at the heart and soul of MozRank. And backlinks have everything to do with how well your pages rank in search engines.
Thus, the importance of MozRank and the impact it has on SEO cannot be understated.
MozRank is page-specific
Just like every page has its own backlinks, every page also has its own MozRank.
For instance, your homepage may have a MozRank of 5 while your latest blog post may have a MozRank of 1.
And adding more backlinks to your homepage won’t have a direct effect on the MozRank of your blog post.
So while your homepage may rank at the top of Google for its target keyword, your blog post may struggle at first to rank past Google’s fourth page.
MozRank is competition-relative
What this means is that your page’s MozRank is valuable so far as it relates to the other pages competing for the top spot on Google for your target keyword.
In other words:
If your page has a higher MozRank than other competing pages, there’s a good chance it’ll rank higher in the search results. And vice versa.
See, there’s no set MozRank score you must achieve to rank on search engines. A MozRank of 2 can rank just as easily as a MozRank of 9 depending on the circumstances.
If your page has a MozRank of 2 and every other competing page has a MozRank of 1, then your page will likely rank higher than all of them.
On the flip side…
If your page has a MozRank of 9 and every other competing page has a MozRank of 10, then your page will likely rank lower than them all.
So you can see the importance of MozRank in determining your spot on Google and how it can be used to elevate you past your competitors.
Now let’s talk about how you can use that info to your advantage.
How to Use MozRank to Improve SEO and Rank Higher
MozRank’s primary use is as a tool for comparing your page’s ranking potential to that of those that are currently ranking on the first page for your target keyword.
So how do you take that knowledge and apply it to improve your SEO?
First, you need to know the MozRank of yours and your competitors’ pages.
You can find out what they are by using a tool from Small SEO Tools called MozRank Checker.
Just paste your page’s URL into the box and click “Check Rank:”
So let’s pretend that we have our own post about SEO auditing and we want to get this page ranked on the first page of Google for the keyword “seo site audit.”
And let’s say that our current MozRank score is 2.80.
Now, we need to find out what the target MozRank is for us to get on the first page. We’ll do that by copying and pasting the URLs of the top ten results on Google into MozRank Checker:
And here are the results:
When we look at the results, two things stand out:
1. Our hypothetical post’s MozRank is just a bit lower than the top ten results.
2. Three of the results don’t display the MozRank.
For point one, this tells us we’re on the right track—but we still need to raise our MozRank a bit. There also could be other underlying conditions preventing us from reaching page one.
- Is the page properly indexed?
- Is the page optimized for our target keyword?
- Do the competitors’ pages have higher quality backlinks or a higher domain or page authority?
This is where good old research comes into play. I would add these competitors to Monitor Backlinks and investigate their link profiles, taking note of other backlink opportunities I can gather from their site.
For point two, this is just the nature of the game. For reasons unknown, the MozRank won’t display for some pages. But you have to do the best with what you’ve got.
Usually, using context as a guide, you can discern an estimate of that missing pages’ MozRank based on what you see in the results that do show up.
Or, if all else fails, you can look for other alternative tools to try and find the MozRank that way.
If your MozRank is lower than your competitors, the above steps will give you a solid starting point for knowing what you need to do to boost your MozRank up high enough to start outranking the competition.
And this is where Monitor Backlinks comes into play.
Monitor Backlinks is specifically designed to let you monitor your progress as you start to improve your MozRank.
There are two ways I recommend monitoring it (if you don’t have a Monitor Backlinks account, you can pick up a free trial here to follow along):
1. Monitor your target keyword
Add your target keyword to Monitor Backlinks by going to the Rank Tracker module and clicking on the “+” button:
Then, type in your keyword and click “Add Keywords:”
Your keyword will now be listed and show your current position within Google (example below):
As your ranking improves, the change will be reflected in the Rank Tracker module.
This makes tracking the position of your keyword simple. But it doesn’t give you detailed information about what impacts your MozRank the most: backlinks.
To monitor that, we’ll use the Your Links module.
2. Monitor the backlinks pointing to your page
The other way to monitor your MozRank’s progress is to monitor the actual backlinks pointing to your page, with the Your Links module.
The first thing you’ll notice after you load up your site’s backlinks is that the list includes every backlink pointing back to your domain.
Sure, we could sift through those links and search for ones that point to the specific page we’re looking for. Or we can make the process infinitely easier by using Monitor Backlinks’ filter options.
Go to the Your Links module and click “New filter” above your links list:
This will bring up a list of filter options you can use to further sort your backlinks.
The filter we want to use in this case is the “Link To” filter. Click it, enter the URL of the page whose backlinks you want to view, and press Enter:
This will cause the Your Links module to only show backlinks pointing back to that specific page.
You can use this filtered view to reveal to you the following:
- MozRank of the links pointing back to your site
Why is this important, you ask?
Because, as far as we can tell, MozRank “juice” from one page “bleeds” into the other pages it links to.
So the higher the MozRank of the pages that link back to your page, the better off your MozRank will be.
- Backlinks that are potentially unnatural
Monitor Backlinks metrics like Status, Trust Flow, Spam Score and External Links can help you find links that are harming your rankings so you can remove/disavow them before they cause further harm.
With these two Monitor Backlinks tools, you’ll have everything you need to closely monitor your page’s Google ranking and manage the links that contribute to its MozRank.
We’re almost done!
But before I end this post, let’s first go over a couple of simple things you can do to easily increase your pages’ MozRank.
2 Powerful Tips for Improving Your MozRank
If it’s not obvious by now, the key to increasing MozRank is more backlinks.
Now, it should come as no surprise that we have a vast library of helpful articles on how to score more high-quality backlinks already available on Monitor Backlinks.
For starters, I recommend:
- How to Get Quality Backlinks: The 2 Most Powerful Methods
- The Definitive Guide to Earning High-Quality Organic Backlinks
- 4 Trustworthy Strategies to Get Relevant, High Trust Flow Backlinks
But I’ve listed below two simple tips you can start using right now to help you boost your MozRank. These tips will work with any page you publish on your site.
1. Incorporate internal linking into every page
Remember how I mentioned earlier that backlinks can pass on a bit of their own MozRank?
Well, that same concept applies to your pages as well.
For example, your page with a MozRank of 6 can pass on some its MozRank “juice” when linked to your page with a MozRank of 2.
So make sure you link to other pages on your site with every post you publish.
Do you have existing pages that have a higher MozRank?
If so, then you may want to update those posts and insert links to relevant pages that could use a boost in MozRank.
It’s a simple tip to implement but can yield powerful results.
2. Start a link popularity campaign
As far as we know, nothing is more impactful to MozRank than link quantity.
The more backlinks you have, the higher your MozRank tends to be.
Take advantage of this by implementing link popularity campaigns for your most important pages.
What is a link popularity campaign, you ask?
I cover it in much more detail here. But the main idea is this: a link building campaign that focuses more on quantity than on quality.
That’s not to say it throws quality out the window (which is never a smart idea). But it does place less emphasis on link quality and, instead, aims to garner more backlinks from sites with lower Domain Authority and Page Authority.
This type of campaign can be very impactful on not only MozRank but also on building a strong, diverse backlink portfolio.
I hope this post helped you gain a better understand of MozRank and showed you how to use it to your advantage.
Here’s how to implement what you’ve just learned:
Start by signing up for Monitor Backlinks so you can monitor your various pages’ backlinks and status in search engines.
Then, read the above-referenced posts about getting high-quality links and do the following:
- Pick 3-5 strategies to implement in the near future
- Choose one strategy and start implementing it today.
Take action, stay persistent and you’ll see a significant increase in both your site’s MozRank scores and your position in the search engines.