+20 points in 6 months: How we increased Domain Rating with 0 paid links

Growing the domain rating and increasing search positions is a burning and painful question for many businesses. Ouch!🤕

Up until recently, it had been a touchy subject for us, too.

We turned for help to a few SEO agencies and individual SEO specialists so that they’d grow our search positions. However, we ended up only losing the search positions results we had achieved before🤷‍♀️.

So, with nothing left to lose, one day, we decided to change our approach.

Taking the risk paid off! In less than 6 months, we were already enjoying +20 points to DR with zero budget on paid links🚀.

Here's our domain rate at the beginning of our journey in May (this is a screenshot from Ahrefs that I used to track progress):


Here's what I got at the end of the year:

We also saw a few other favourable results that I’m happy to tell you about.
✔️An increase in keywords numbers in positions 1 - 3 for the US: from 50 to 156.
✔️An increase of organic traffic in our target location, the US. It grew from 1,000 in May 2020 to 6,000 in December of the same year.
✔️We scored first position for our main target keyword.

It’s not a secret. The main factor of DR growth is the number of quality and high-authority referring links that a website has.

My goal was to get at least 30 backlinks per month.

In the beginning, I had a lot of doubts regarding the attainability of this task.

But you know what they say, the best blaze brightest when circumstances are at their worst.

So, I just braced myself and started the journey. And it turned out to be just fine, there even was a month when I got 51 backlinks😅.

The strategies that I used to get backlinks and increase the domain rating of my website: both good and not so good🤷

👉A quick SaaS link exchange - it helped to quickly increase DR for the first month by 7 points.
👉Expert comments on media and brand blogs. Helped us to gain links from media outlets like Wordsteam (domain rating 90), CEOBlogNation (domain rating 71), GoodFirms (domain rating 83).
👉Outreach strategy for getting backlinks. The strategy that turned out to be the least effective for us and didn’t generate as much positive change as expected
👉Guest Posting. Our guest posts appeared on G2, TheNextWeb, Sales Hacker, Crunchbase, etc.

I understand that this short squeeze is not enough to create an action plan for you to grow your DR.

I placed the full story with all the pros and cons, challenges, and templates for every strategy here👇👇👇

🙌P.S. I’ll answer all your questions about our process of DR growth under this post, so feel free to ask

  1. 2

    This is a great breakdown, and an even better deep-dive, thank you for sharing! One thing that I have found has been super beneficial to obtain high-value backlinks in a more effective, lower workload timeframe is to utilize HARO.

    Where I was once pre-writing a 1,500+ word article then shopping it around for outreach as a pre-completed piece of content, instead I send short pitches to 3-5 HARO requests per day, and typically get a couple of responses/links out of it on medium to high value sites.

    1. 2

      absolutely! HARO is a great way to get backlinks from high-authority websites if you don't have time for long-reads.

    2. 1

      We've been doing this the past month and it's gone really well. We pay a productized service to do it for us, but it's the exact same strategy.

      1. 1

        Nice! Do they also write the comments on your behalf? Or are they just looking for opportunities and ask you to provide comments?

        1. 1

          I use Jolly SEO and they write the comments. They're expensive, but they're good. Most of the quotes are pretty spot on with how I would write them.

          It probably helps that I've got a ton of previously written content to draw from, but either way, they've done a good job.

  2. 2

    Thanks for sharing Anna! Definitely a good read!

    1. 1

      Thanks! I hope some of the approaches I tried will help you as well. Of course, if you are also on a struggle to growing your DR ;)

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