Authority is an “accepted source of expert information and advice”.
On the web, a link to a page is a vote, and its existence is because the site linked to is found to be useful and informative – in a perfect world. So, if more sites link to it, it becomes authoritative.
So, building a strategy for site wide SEO is more than building a site you hope gains authority status. First, you need to construct a hub. This hub can be a single website of good standing or a community of websites, forums or blogs relevant to your target authority.
Constructing a highly ranked hub is simple – create a basic content site(s) with REAL original content and link out from it to known current authorities.
Now you have a hub to feed hungry google spiders to your authority website.
Ok, is this “hub” a “link farm”? – a “bad neighborhood”? That depends on you. DON’T just make a crappy content-less page with toilet paper lists of links to everything from shoes to skylights. This “hub” should stand on its own merit and offer information to the user. Links out are for more authoritative information from authorities.
If done right, your hub will become authoritative in time as well, and may become a fantastic opportunity for monetization.
If done the wrong way, all you’ve done is create a link farm, a bad neighborhood and hurt the position of the very site you’re trying to help.
Good hubs point to good authorities and good authorities are linked to from good hubs. Don’t dilute or prostitute your hubs!
A problem many webmasters encounter is also what frustrates users (and search engines) is “topic drift”.
Consider what happens when a useful hub of respectable status dedicated to a topic, for example hair dryers, deviates from their theme. Add a link to say, a conversion van company – the theme is broken, trust is withdrawn – you have a link farm.
Your hub needs to remain relevant to the industry you are targeting for your authority website.
Though tempting, a webmaster needs to consider what links are placed on a site, not just who links to them. They must think of the users, and only link out where it would benefit the user. This will usually keep the hub from being considered spam.