The basis of how good a website's SEO value is is judged on many aspects, but most consider the most important factor to be the SEO 'equity' passed to the site from external linking sources. These 'backlinks' are monitored to try and gain an understanding of the value that they are passing to the site. There are many tools that allow you to measure these values, one of which is Majestic SEO.
Yesterday Majestic SEO announced two new link metrics, Citation Flow and Trust Flow, for measuring the perceived quality of a domain, subdomain or page.
Over the last couple of years the use of Google's PageRank measurement has seen a decline and SEOMoz's MozRank has taken over as the go-to measurement of value. Majestic SEO are now claiming that their new metrics are the successor, with a much more useful set of measures.
Citation Flow - This number predicts how influential a URL might be based on the number of sites linking to it. The more links that the site has, the higher it's Citation Flow.
Trust Flow - This number predicts how trustworthy a URL might be based on a backlink's proximity to trusted domains. Links from within trusted neighbourhoods are more trustworthy than links from spammy neighbourhoods.
As Majestic SEO's Fresh Index is updated daily, Citation and Trust Flow are very useful metrics not only for what they show you, but in their freshness too. Compared to SEOMoz's metrics which are updated monthly and PageRank which is updated every few months, Trust & Citation Flow can give you daily updates.
The particularly useful aspect about the new metrics is the visual representation of the numbers. The graph lets you quickly gauge a page's metrics in an easy-to-present format.
As the Trust & Citation Flow numbers are between 0 & 100, the graph uses a 100x100 grid as it's canvas, and places a square on the relative point on the grid for each backlink. The more squares at a particular point, the darker the square becomes.
The graphs can be shown in 2 formats, Referring Domains and External Backlinks.
This graph shows the Trust & Citation Flow for each of the domains that link to the site. The closer to the bottom left a square is, the less links and less trust a linking domain has. A square in the middle but near the bottom of the graph represents a domain with a lot of backlinks but very low trust. A square on the top right of the graph signifies a domain with a lot of backlinks and very high trust.
Switching to the External Backlinks graph shows the Trust & Citation Flow for the individual backlinks linking to your site. As you may notice a lot of the high Trust Flow links have gone, a likely explanation is that even though a highly Trusted & Cited domain may be linking to you, the actual link could be coming from a deep page which doesn't have as high Trust or as many Citations as the main domain.
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