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What is Google Page Rank?

6th February 2010 Marketing, Search Engine (SEO)

Google Page Rank is Google’s way of measuring how important a website is on a scale of 1-10 by using a link analysis algorithm. Therefore if a site has a rank of 10/10, Google will favour it a lot more than of site of 0/10 in terms of search engine ranking, frequency of website being crawled and more.

It is worth stressing that Google uses page rank, along with many other factors, when deciding crawl rates, rankings etc.

A Little Bit of History

Page rank was originaly created at Stanford University in 1996 by Larry Page and Sergey Brin. Although the trademark is owned by Google the patent is actually owned by Stanford University itself. They have an exclusive license to Google allowing the search engine to use the technology.

Larry Page and Sergey Brin were both the original founders of Google, which was founded on September 4th, 1998. 2 years after page rank was first created.

Find out your Page Rank

You can find out your websites Page Rank, or any other websites page rank, using this page rank checker tool alternatively you can use Google’s Toolbar (only available for Internet Explorer users). For small websites you should expect anything between 0-3. Companies reaching over a 3 should be happy, over 5 and you’ve obviously been doing a lot of work in terms of building links.

If you’re looking for a more convenient, long term, way to find out a websites page rank then you can do what the seo professionals do and install a Firefox or Chrome add-on. Just click one of the below links and search for “Page Rank” in the relevant add-on store.

Examples of page rank scores:

Improving your websites score

For companies wishing to improve their Page Rank the best thing to do is to start a link building campaign. Your page rank goes up as your inbound links (links pointing to your website) increase. A company with 400 links would have a higher page rank then one with only 100 links. Not all links are equal though, links from certain sites are more important than others which is why link building is normally done by seo pros.

For webmasters who prefer to do it yourself then the best thing to do is to work on getting links from your friends’ websites and getting them to point to yours. Additionally get your website on social networking sites like Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter.

Page ranks Archilles’ heel

A big fault of Page Rank is the fact that, being based on links, it can be manipulated.

Due to its’ importance there is a high demand for services that boost a websites page rank as a result “black hat” search engine experts emerged within the industry and they, in essence, build a high number of (spam) websites with low quality content linking to third party website.

It was then assumed that by sending i.e 100 links from these spam sites to the third party website that the page rank would go up.

Because of this great weakness Google are having to constantly updating their algorithm and in many cases now they can identify link farms and totally ignore them/black list them. This is part of the reason why directory websites, with lots of links and low content, are now less used and have little influence on your search engine rankings.

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