Building authority for your business can be really beneficial. For an e-commerce business, you may find that it means people will come to you first for their purchases, and for a business that provides a service, you may find that people see you as a thought-leader and will come to you first for new information and industry insights.
Everything you read, whether it be online or offline, you make a decision about authority. Do you trust the source and the information they have provided? These same decisions are made by people who come across your website when searching for information online. If they click on your site, they are trusting that you will provide them with the information they are looking for. If your site is not what they needed, they will go elsewhere and you risk them losing trust in you. With a loss of trust, you will find that they may not return in future, and you will have potentially lost a prospect.
So, to build and maintain authority, you must gain trust. As we know, trust is built through people seeing that the content you are sharing is what they are looking for, which means it must be relevant to them.
The content you are sharing should be relevant to your business – if you sell coffee, there is no reason for you to be sharing content about the latest trends in fashion, for example. The more relevant content you are sharing, the better your search engine listings will be, giving you a higher chance of your website being clicked by people searching on your keywords.
Then, the relevance of your content is assessed by the person searching – is it the information they were looking for? Unfortunately, you cannot control this and only they will know what they want. If you know your content is relevant, and someone does not click it, they have either already found the information elsewhere, or they are not the right prospect for you anyway.
So, what do we know?
Relevance and authority come hand in hand and are linked by trust. If someone decided to trust the information over the authority of the source, then they are trusting the relevance of the content. If there are two sources with similar information, authority will have a bigger role to play in their decision making.
As a business, the main thing is to not make stuff up when posting content on your website. Posting content that is irrelevant to your business will damage any trust that you may have built up with your prospects and you will lose your authoritative position as a result. Even if you just do this once, people won’t forget that easily and they may be deterred from visiting your website in future.