Page Rank is Google’s most important ranking factor out of at least 200 different ranking factors. It takes into account the number and the quality of inbound links to a website or web page. It is passed from a website or web page to other websites or web pages through links.
Google sees a link as a recommendation for another website. And it is best to think of links as a recommendation.
Imagine if you were trying to decide what restaurant you were going to eat at. You read a review in well-respected food magazine for a lovely Italian. You also read a review of a different restaurant in a car magazine and it too recommends a restaurant only this is a Chinese restaurant now which one are you likely to believe to have the best knowledge of restaurants? That’s right the well-respected food magazine. Gaining backlinks is much the same.
Page Rank is an algorithm
Algorithm defined: An algorithm is simply a mathematical formula used by the search engines to determine which pages rank number 1,2,3,etc when you search for any given keyword or set of keywords.
While we know Pagerank as a vital factor in Google’s overall algorithm, Pagerank is in fact an algorithm within the whole algorithm. This is because it is Google’s way of rating and evaluating links. It does this automatically by taking into account a number of factors. As a result it is a mathematical formula i.e. an algorithm.
Why is it called Pagerank?
It is named after Larry Page who created the whole algorithm for evaluating links. Page is the co-founder of Google and was revolutionary in being the first search engine to use links as a major ranking factor a factor which is now used by all major search engines.
How to get more Pagerank?
To improve your Pagerank you need to get more high quality backlinks to your website, and in order to do that you have to master the art of backlink building.
There are three important factors in making a link high quality:
1) The authority of the site linking to you: this is determined by the Pagerank of the site and web page that is linking to you. The more Pagerank of the site linking to you the better the link for you.
2) The relevance of the site to your site: this too is connected to the authority of a site but is slightly different. Thinking again of a link as a recommendation of your website. A good recommendation of a restaurant is more valuable if coming from a relevant source. If you were to get a recommendation from another competing restaurant that would be worth far more than a non competing non food related business like hairdressers recommending your restaurant. The hairdressers is a good recommendation just not as good as your competitor recommending you.
Taking this logic and applying it to Pagerank, it is clear that getting backlinks from other sites that have a similar to yours is better than less relevant links.
3) How easy is it to get a link? : If you get a link from a high Pagerank site that’s great. But if the page you got your link from is littered with hundreds of links then it is hard for Google and the other search engines to determine whether the link is valuable. As a result the value of the link is diluted and less Pagerank is passed. Where as if you get a link from a slightly lower Pagerank website but you are one of only a few links from the page then the overall result may be of more Pagerank being passed to your site.
A high-quality backlink is very useful to your website in boosting your Pagerank and also your Google ranking which will result in you soaring up the organic searches and getting more free traffic for your website.
Some people believe that if they simply get a thousand inbound links from sites with no Pagerank or authority they will get lots of Pagerank. That is not true at all one link from a Pagerank nine website’s homepage is far better than a thousand worthless links.
Well that’s simple. You just have to follow the numerous backlink building techniques and tips available on this website. In general to actively go out and get a link yourself you have to add value to another website. Whether that’s by writing an article or adding an insightful comment to a blog. There are hundreds of ideas on this website on how you can add value to other sites and get the most out of your hard work by getting inbound links to your website.
You can also follow the 86 link building strategies discussed in Link Building Mastery. LBM is my 266 page eBook that gives you the tools and the techniques to build high PageRank backlinks to your website. If you want higher search engine rankings and more traffic from Google then I highly recommend Link Building Mastery.
Top PageRank myths
People more often fail at SEO not because they don’t know the right things to do, but because they don’t know about the wrong things not to do.
Never fall into these PageRank myths listed below
Better Pagerank automatically means better rankings
While Pagerank does contribute to a high Google ranking, it does not mean that your rankings will soar when it improves. There are a number of facets in fact 200 different ones to gain high search engine rankings. If you disregard the others and focus solely on Pagerank you will drop in the organic search results.
Pagerank is the only ranking factor
Some people believe that Pagerank is the only ranking factor in Google’s extensive algorithm. That’s simply not true. If that was the case then the quality of content, on page SEO and all the other things like page speed that Google takes into account would not be remotely relevant as they are not included in the Pagerank algorithm.
The more links, the more Pagerank your site has
This is one of the biggest mistakes people make when talking about or trying to get Pagerank for their website. Pagerank is not based purely on the number of links to your site. If you get links from pages that aren’t indexed by Google then the links can’t even be seen by Google. And if Google isn’t aware of the links then they can’t contribute to a better Pagerank.
As I have said above if you had one link from a Pagerank 9 website it will probably be better for your Pagerank than a thousand links from sites with a 0/10 rating.
Giving no outbound links will retain Pagerank and be better for your rankings
This is defiantly my favorite myth that you hear a lot of people talking about. Most of these people know a lot about Pagerank but don’t have too much common sense. While giving no outbound links may well retain more Pagerank within your site that strategy is riddled with problems.
First of all giving outbound links can be very useful to your website’s visitors. Having a useful site for visitors will mean that they will like your site better and may link to it. If you give no links then your site will look very strange.
Also it is thought that giving valuable outbound links from your website will benefit your rankings. So it is pretty much useless to give no links as the net result will be a loss of Pagerank and loss of credibility for your site.
Plus by giving links to other sites you are adding to the internet and making it more popular and useful to the user. Originally links were the primary way to navigate around the web and you will be helping that easy navigation continue if you add links to your site.
If you are worried about losing people from your site you can always make your links pop up so that your website remains open in the browser in a different window.
Pagerank and the other search engines
While Pagerank is exclusively Google’s it has had a large effect on other search engines in general. Larry Page came up with the idea that a link is like a vote and the whole system of evaluating links and using them as a ranking factor of a website. As a result of the success of the search engine and Pagerank, other search engines have also used links as a vital part of their algorithm. To which point most people assume that Bing, Yahoo! and Ask all use links in their algorithm.
There are a number of tools out there that allow you to check the Pagerank of web pages. But they all get their information from the MOZ Toolbar. When you download the Toolbar you can choose to see the Pagerank part of it. It will show a little green bar at the top of your browser that shows the Pagerank of a page out of ten. You can download the toolbar
The Pagerank of websites is updated as soon as MOZ find new information to change their opinion of the value of sites inbound links. But the toolbar which represents these views is not updated straight away but in different troughs. There is no set date for these updates but they can come as a surprise either nasty or nice to website owners who are not aware of the updates and suddenly think their Pagerank has changed drastically.
If your Pagerank has changed drastically on the toolbar after an update it is simply a reflection on what has happened to the inbound links to your website over the period of time since the last toolbar update. In general each update will show little or no difference to your toolbar so there is no need to worry about them.
Pagerank sculpting is controlling the flow of Pagerank around your website. You do this by strategically linking internally and also with your links from other sites. For example you may choose to link from your homepage to the pages on your website that have the largest keywords. By doing this you will be passing Pagerank to what you consider your most important pages you may also attempt to build high quality links to these pages in particular.
Google have come up with a cool piece of HTML that means that Pagerank isn’t passed through a link from page to page. You simply insert rel=”nofollow” into the link. It was intended to stop spammers from adding links to websites just in order to build their rankings with Google. It has worked extremely well and is a very popular piece of code. It is used by Wikipedia and many other websites that allow users and visitors to contribute and add backlinks to your website.
But the nofollow attribute also allows you to easily sculpt Pagerank. Imagine if you wanted to provide a list of links or simply felt that a page on your website had too many outbound links then you could apply the nofollow attribute to some of the links. It is also very useful to restrict the flow of Pagerank to pages that won’t be showing up in natural search results but are useful to users.
What pages might they be? Well for example have you ever seen a sitemap or login page turn up in the search results? Virtually never. So while you want users to access the page you don’t want to waste Pagerank on pages that won’t get you any free traffic. So all you have to do is apply the rel=”nofollow” attribute to all links to those types of pages.
While anchor text is not a part of the Pagerank formula. It is too important not to mention. If you are going out there and trying to get backlinks and Pagerank for your website it is important to mention anchor text. What is anchor text? It is the text in which a link is contained. You will have noticed I’m sure that while you read web pages you will notice some links without an actual web address visible just words are visible. These words are seen as keywords to the search engines and are very important to showing the search engines what the page linked to is about.
So if you are linking to yourself make sure you use the keyword for the page that is most relevant to that page. Doing so will boost your rankings for that keyword for that page.
Summary of PageRank
Pagerank is important in the ranking of your website but is not the only factor. While it is generally perceived as the most important factor and certainly is one of the most talked-about factors by Google themselves. Don’t take it too seriously but backlink building is very important to the authority to your website and will result in more traffic if combined with PageRank and all the other ranking factors