MozRank vs. MozTrust: What’s the Difference & What Does It Mean For SEO?

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Moz is one of the leading SEO tool providers. Its features are used to extrapolate key information and various metrics that can help us optimize our content marketing strategies. Moz offers a plethora of tools, providing us valuable data to glean invaluable insights. MozTrust and MozRank are just two of many metrics provided on the site that can help us measure our content’s performance. But before we dive into the useful information that can be gleaned, let’s explore where to access this information, what’s the meaning of MozRank vs. MozTrust and what we can learn about our content from using these logarithmic scales.

Where can we locate these metrics?

To view your MozRank vs. MozTrust scores - access Moz’s Open Site Explorer and plug in the page or pages you’d like to analyze. From there, you’ll receive some menu options on the left sidebar. Click on Compare Link Metrics. You can use and compare up to five links at a time.

MozRank vs. MozTrust Open Site Explorer

What is MozRank?

Well, from the horse’s mouth:“MozRank quantifies link popularity and is Moz’s version of Google’s classic PageRank algorithm… In this way, it reflects a type of raw link equity for any given webpage on the Internet.” –Moz.comMozRank is presented on a scale of 0 to 10: 0 being the lowest, 10 being the highest. Essentially this number showcases how much link equity or “link juice” our web page has.So, what does that mean exactly and how do we rank higher on the scale? Simply put, backlinks. The more other sites backlink to your web page, the higher the MozRank.

What is MozTrust?

Much like MozRank, MozTrust has a value between 0 and 10. While MozRank can be thought of as a “popularity score” (who gets the most link love), MozTrust is a “global link trust score.” Essentially, it’s not about the volume of links but the trust-based quality of links. It begs the question, “Are you getting backlinks from trusted sites such as government sites, education sites, research labs, etc.?”So, what if one of these sites don’t directly link to me? Will I have a MozTrust score of 0?No, not necessarily. As Moz likes to put it:“We determine MozTrust by calculating link ‘distance’ between a given page and a ‘seed’ site — a specific, known trust source (website) on the Internet. Think of this like six degrees of separation: The closer you are linked to a trusted website, the more trust you have.”

MozRank vs. MozTrust - What do they mean for SEO?

We have two different metrics that indicate both raw link equity and trust-based link equity. Now, how do we use these metrics and what does it help us understand about our content?First, let’s establish there isn’t a “good” or “bad” score per se. Yes, 0 is low and 10 is high, but there are a number of factors that can limit the score your website can get. For example, how old your site is, and the size of your audience. When you’re a typical blog, you can’t compare your scores to the likes of a Forbes or Inc.Both MozRank and MozTrust are based on algorithms developed by popular search engines like Yahoo! and very similar to Google’s PageRank. These two factors can help us determine what content will most likely rank better and is optimized for success. It also provides us a learning opportunity to discover new insights about our content. What types of content are other sites linking to? What blog posts are being linked to by trust-related websites? Lastly, this leads to what actions can we take to optimize the content with lower scores.

Actionable Insights

For this exercise, I exported and graphed all published blog posts of a public website and performed a cluster analysis.

MozRank vs. MozTrust Cluster Analysis

So what does this tell us? Here are some key takeaways broken down by cluster color:

  • Blog posts with both high rank and trust in teal. These are our winners. This is the type of content we should be striving for.
  • Blog posts with high trust and low rank in orange. The quality of content is high but we need to pitch the content to gain new backlinks.
  • Blog post with low trust and moderate rank in red. The rank varies across the board but we can be certain that these posts need an upgrade in content quality.
  • Blog posts with medium rank and medium trust in blue. This type of content is considered the middle of the road. The content can be fixed up and pitched for backlinks but consider it a lower priority than the orange and red clusters.

Taking Action

Now that you understand the difference between MozRank vs. MozTrust and the valuable insights each bring to your blog, you can start to analyze your content. Ask yourself these deep-diving questions:

  • Are there patterns of content that have high trust?
  • Are there patterns of content that have high rank?
  • What types of content create the sweet spot and have high scores for both?

Use this knowledge gained to help guide your content strategy throughout the year.

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