How to Increase Site Authority Fast? And Should you?

How to Increase Site Authority Fast? And Should you?
Do not index
Do not index
Can you increase your site authority from DR 0 to 60 in 60 days?
Yes, you can(as you’ll see in a bit).
But that’s not all I want to discuss in this article. What I really want to explore is whether such rapid gains in authority are worthwhile and whether you should gamble on them.
Well, let’s find out.

Increasing Your Site Authority from DR 0 to 60 in 60 Days

A 60-point jump in site authority in just two months…sounds improbable, right?
That’s what I thought when my friend asked for my suggestion on a $1,000 service that promised to do that.
I brushed it aside – knowing from experience that this is probably a low-quality service and could hurt a website in the long run. However, my friend insisted I check them out, so I put on my detective’s hat and began investigating.
Before we go any further, let’s understand how Ahrefs’ DR or Moz's DA impact content marketing:
  • Essentially, they want to be associated with high DA/DR websites – in terms of getting and giving out links.
  • Of course, that leaves many low-DR sites with fewer opportunities to collaborate and obtain backlinks (hence, the need for paid links).
Coming back to the service, I took a look at their website to understand what they offer. Here’s what I found:
  1. High-quality, relevant links from manual link-building
    1. notion image
  1. Guaranteed DR boosts of 20, 50, and 60 points or a 100% refund if the boost is not achieved
      • They even mention that it may take more time to achieve the target DR in some cases.
      notion image
  1. Backlinks from generic news websites
    1. notion image
As you can see, the third point negates the first – because their links aren’t really “relevant”(learn more about high-quality links and relevance).
Nevertheless, let’s analyze the possibility of increasing a site’s DR from 0 to 60 in 60 days.

What Domain Ratings Really Mean

Before I delve into the results of this service, let me clarify something: DR as a metric can be manipulated easily.  As someone who’s been in the SEO space for some time, I’ve often encountered high DR sites with almost no organic traffic.
Why is DR so prone to manipulation?
Well, the answer lies in how it’s calculated. According to Ahrefs:
  • Your DR tally increases with every link you build to your site
  • Links from high-DR sites are more influential than those from low-DR sites
  • Your DR score is only boosted by the first link from a domain. Subsequent links don’t pass as much link equity(or ‘DR juice’).
What this tells us is that you can build links from any website to boost your domain rating. It doesn’t matter if they’re low-quality or high-quality, relevant or irrelevant, or placed on secure or insecure pages(as you’re about to see in a bit).
With that in mind, let’s take a look at – a client of the aforementioned service.

Should You Opt For a Rapid Increase in Site Authority(A Case Study)

My analysis of revealed two things:
  • Off-page SEO efforts began in October 2023 when the site only had a DR of 27 and 137 referring domains
  • Within 2 months about 13,000 new referring domains were added, boosting the site’s DR to 69
notion image
While this may seem like an achievement, a cursory look at the site's referring domains reveals some unsettling truths:
  • A backlink profile with several low-quality links(irrelevant sites with thin content).
  • Even links from mid-DR websites can be traced to unverified, blank pages like this:
notion image
A DR 52 site linking out to
A DR 52 site linking out to
As you can see, this is a DR 52 website – with no content or valid certification.
Leaving aside ethical concerns, the biggest problem here is the exponential rise in backlinks (13,000 backlinks in 2 months). Could a genuine site build that many links in 2 months?
The answer’s no, and here's why: Quality link-building takes time and effort and is marked by a natural progression in both backlinks and organic traffic (check out the screenshots below).
Genuine website backlink progression
Genuine website backlink progression
Backlink progression on
Backlink progression on
Compare these results to Brand Innovation's graph and you'll see glaring differences (the spike in referring domains and organic traffic).
The thing is, it’s not just you who can see these differences. Google can see them, too.
With so many updates targeting link schemes and SpamBrain(an AI-based spam-prevention system), Google is more equipped than ever to deal with these tactics. Also, following the Penguin update, the search giant can easily detect and devalue low-quality links.
Also, after the recent HCU update, Google has downgraded pages with unhelpful content, especially those with stock images and too many ads. This includes generic news websites, which the agency in question uses to build links.
Overall, all Brand Innovation gained from this initiative was an increased likelihood of a penalty (and a potential wipeout from SERPs). Not the kind of thing you can offset with high DR!

A Better Way to Increase Site Authority

Given all the information above if I were building a long-term business, say a SaaS business (which my friend is building) would I want to risk a penalty for seemingly no gain in ranking probability?! The answer is a clear NO! And that is what I conveyed to my friend with the detailed analysis that you see above.
Since I didn’t want a link scheme to jeopardize his efforts, I shared some tried and tested link-building strategies with him. I also introduced him to link-building tools, that could optimize and reduce the cost of his campaigns.
Lastly, I pitched some great link-building services to him – you know the kind that don’t make disingenuous claims and only practice white-hat link-building.
Altogether, though, I realized that a lot of us find ourselves in limbo when it comes to link-building. And there are plenty of services that capitalize on this confusion.
If you find yourself in a similar situation, I suggest you read this comprehensive link-building guide. Also, sign up for Smartlinks – a link-building community that hosts well-known SaaS brands(Mailmodo, Bettermode, Narrato, Tidio) and shares regular marketing and SEO insights.

Written by

Shyamal Parikh
Shyamal Parikh

Founder of and Passionate about marketing and productivity. Over the years I have learnt and experimented with a lot of ranking factors and these articles are a way for me to share the same with you.