If you have been a long time managing websites you know how important SEO is and how metrics have changed along the years. Do you remember Google PageRank bar? Were you one of thousands that crossed their fingers, waiting Google dance to see if the green bar had moved from 2 or 4 to 5?
Those days are gone. And although Google’s reign will be long and its algorithm is unknown, other parameters from other companies such as MOZ, Ahrefs and Majestic have emerged in order to determine if your site deserves to be A-list.
Every SEO expert has his/her favorite metrics to verify sites quality. Trust Flow is one of those metrics and it is gaining popularity. Many experts think it is more accurate than Domain Authority. Why?
See for yourself and consider the advantages of turning your blog into a reliable site!
What is Trust Flow?
Trust Flow is a quality indicator to determine if a site is trustworthy. This indicator developed by Majestic, works on a scale of 0 to 100. Sites with backlinks from reliable sources will get higher scores, while sites with questionable links will score much lower.
Trust Flow is directly related with another indicator called Citation Flow.
Unlike Trust Flow, Citation Flow is not focused on quality, but on number of links so that if a website has a multitude of links pointing to it Citation Flow will be higher.
Let’s measure LinkedIn:
The screenshot does not show all data provided. Besides Trust and Citation Flow you can see your backlinks’ external backlinks, referring domains and other useful data. The axis chart X-Y on the right measures both Trust and Citation Flow.
Citation Flow isn’t just a measure of the incoming links to your site. It also measures the incoming links to the sites linking to you, and the sites linking to those sites… and we could dive deeper.
Knowing that Citation Flow measures the links of the links and so on, think about how a link from a relevant site like Wikipedia can give you very high Citation Flow and Trust Flow scores.
There are millions of sites linking to Wikipedia! Therefore, a Wikipedia link to your site has a huge Citation Flow density.
Both Trust Flow and Citation Flow matter. They are important for SEO, Search Engine Results Page (SERP) and even Search Engine Reputation Management (SERM) strategies. In a nutshell: Getting backlinks from websites that deserve Google’s confidence will improve organic position in Google.
A third metric called Topical Trust Flow was added in 2014. It measures the reliability of the pages that link to the query web according to their activity categories.
In this example, Amazon is measured.
As you see, most backlinks categories are Shopping, Arts, Computers… These data are useful for many purposes. Think about how could you use them for your digital marketing strategies.
And although just like LinkedIn Amazon has many links, think about how a post dedicated to your web or a link specifically directed to your web would influence in your Trust Flow and Citation Flow.
Trust Flow is not only important for better rankings. It is useful if you want to monetize your sites with highly targeted links, paid branded content or ads.
How to build a high Trust Flow for your blog?
It may seem simple but is not that easy, because you will have a high Trust Flow link building ahead to gain authoritative backlinks.
But how can you receive authoritative links and get rid of the bad ones? Basically there are five ways.
- Connecting with Influencers.
- Connecting with Influential sites that link to Influencers.
- Guest posting on relevant sites.
- Blogger Outreach: A good Blogger Outreach expert can make the work for you, searching relevant sites in which you can pay for a post (with its necessary links pointing to your site) and receive a qualitative and authoritative boost.
- Removing bad links: Yoast (the developer of the Yoast SEO WordPress plugin), wrote an interesting article about how to clean up your bad backlinks.
Why SEO agencies ask for sites with a good Trust Flow?
Good SEO agencies ask for sites with a good Trust Flow to ensure that their clients’ links or even content is placed on the right sites. For better measure websites reliability, SEO experts use the Trust Ratio. This is the result of dividing Trust Flow between Citation Flow (some agencies do the reverse division).
Trust Flow / Citation Flow = Trust Ratio
Trust Ratio is significant, because a website can have a high Citation Flow score but a low Trust Flow. This would mean that the site is maybe a viral site with poor quality content or has obtained links through spammy methods.
Or it also could mean that there’s no linkbuilding or content promotion.
Looking at the first screenshot above, we have a Citation Flow of 83 and a Trust Flow of 86. The Trust Ratio is 1.03. The Amazon Trust Ratio is 95/94= 1,01
At this point, here is the million-dollar question: What is the best Trust Ratio? There is no a exact rule but being logical you should keep in mind which site are you measuring.
Websites like Wikipedia have tons of backlinks but there are also websites with a high Citation Flow and a Poor Trust Flow and vice versa.
About Trust Ratio, what do you consider the best practice TF/CF or CF/TF? And finally, in what other ways would you build Trust Flow for your blog?