As the power of PageRank is getting lower, flow metrics matter. Google gives a huge importance to metrics like domain authority, trust flow or citation flow as a ranking factor. These data are pretty hard to measure, that is why software has been developed by companies like Moz or Majestic, which are pretty good at analyzing links.
With Trust Flow or Citation Flow, it is easier for Google to rank a website depending on its quality, authority or trust.
Let’s see what is the difference between Majestic’s Citation Flow and Trust Flow and how they interact.
What is Citation Flow?
Citation Flow is a metric trademarked by Majestic that refers to the popularity of a link in a site without considering the quality of these links. The perfect example is porn sites. They have a very high Citation Flow but these links are often not qualitative. A website with a lot of links pointing to it will be influential and will get a good citation flow.
It is good to know that if Trust Flow increases, then Citation Flow should also increase. However, if Citation Flow increases, there is no proof that Trust Flow will increase too. So if a website with high Citation Flow flow points to your website, your Citation Flow should get a boost. But if websites with high Citation Flow but low Trust Flow link to your website, it will negatively impact your Trust Flow.
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What is Trust Flow?
Trust Flow is a metric trademarked by Majestic that analyses how trustworthy a site is by measuring its quality. Quality is the essential data of this metric. If a link pointing to your website is authoritative and qualitative, then your trust flow will increase. A good trust flow is harder to get than a citation flow and so the Citation Flow will always get higher than the Trust Flow and not the contrary because there are a lot of links but not all of them are relevant. Moreover, even if you are developing a qualitative linking strategy, there are always directories or other sorts of backlinks that are not very qualitative pointing to your website.
In parallel, it seems like there is a direct correlation between trust flow and organic traffic. Indeed, if a site has a high trust flow, then it means it has a lot of qualitative backlinks and Google rewards qualitative backlinks. As a matter of fact, you will be ranked higher.
How they interact?
How to know which ratio is good to get between Citation Flow and Trust Flow? How to optimize the overall trust of a site? For instance if a Citation Flow is 20 and a Trust Flow 40 then the ratio is 1:2. The highest ratio is 0:9 even if Google has 98:99.
The best ratio seems to be 1. Average Trust to Citation Flow ratio should be 0.50. A high ratio will be delivered to an authoritative and trustworthy website. Like if the website has a Citation Flow much higher than a Trust Flow, there is no doubt that the website is hosting a bunch of low-quality links.