Every SEO expert worth his salt knows about page rank and the metrics that accompany it, however, the point where the SEO experts differ is in the significance of PR in ranking of a webpage in the SERPs. Before we proceed further, let’s first know a bit about PR.
What is Page Rank?
Page Rank is a score assigned by Google to every web page depending on the quality and quantity of the link. The Page rank ranges from 0 – 10 where a low quality or brand new page gets a 0 while a page with quality content and trustworthy backlinks will be pegged at 10. If your page is a recent entrant to the ranking you will be getting a ‘not available ‘on the score card until the time you begin to post quality links.
Good Old Days of PR and SEO
The idea of Page Rank was conceived by Google’s owners Sergey Brin and Larry page. The quality metric values of 0 – 10 were assigned to define a page’s reliability, authority and authenticity on the web.
A web site with Page Rank 2 could be found in the first page returned by search results while a site with Page Rank 8 or 9 could be relegated to back pages indicating that Page Rank had no significance bearing on Search Engine ranking.
At its inception Page Rank was considered to be a vital parameter in Google’s ranking algorithm and that it helped in ascertaining the site’s authenticity too. However the increasing number of spammers has led to a decrease in the significance of Page rank as Google has introduced a new set of parameters to hunt down the spammers and to bring the authentic and best sites for the users.
Page Rank Now: Relevant or Irrelevant?
The world of web masters is split on this one. Some webmasters seem to think that Page Rank is not relevant under the present revamped Page ranking algorithm since it has become just one of the many factors that determine the ranking of a particular page rather than being ‘the ’only criterion for judging its worth.
Many experts also feel that the ranking is biased. Under the present guidelines released by Google, the revamped search algorithm gives greater importance to user generated content and social signals leaving Page rank far behind.
Another factor that has led to the assumption of the decreasing importance of Page Rank is that Google has removed Page Rank from its webmaster tool.
But the advocates of Page rank point out that it is still one of the ranking tools used by Google.
If two sites with same content, inbound-outbound links exist, but are differentiated by Page rank – it is obvious that the site with higher Page Rank will appear higher in the search results giving the site an edge over the competitors.
Although the caffeine update by Google ensures that fresh content (sometimes with no page rank) ranks higher, the ranking will dip in search result in due course of time for want of Page Rank.
High Page rank matters as guest bloggers are concerned since most of them favor to write for those websites which have a good Page rank.
The world backs a winner, in the same vein a higher page rank will want other people to link to your page. This increases the popularity of your site, thereby indirectly helping you in the search engine ranking.