Part 1 – What is Page Rank?

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A lot of new bloggers are very confused with all the new terminology that they have to know and understand. One of the biggies we are asked is “What is Page Rank?” or PR and “Why should I care?”.

We am glad you asked, so being the friendly people we are here is the answer:

Page Rank – Page rank is a value that Google assigns to a web page based on the importance of the page on the internet that is determined by the number of incoming links to that web page and few other factors.  Another way to put it is the rank that Google assigns individual web pages within your site.  Page Rank or PR is based on a logarithmic 0 -10 scale which considers the content and transparency of your site according to Google’s search bots as well as the number and quality of inbound and outbound links to the site. (source: Webworkshop)

How Google (and others) assess your page rank for a given site occupies a lot of people a lot of time. However it is useful to understand the basics of page ranking so you can understand how to help (or hinder) your traffic.

How Is Page Rank Calculated ?

Thats easy is it:

PR(A) = (1-d) + d(PR(t1)/C(t1) + … + PR(tn)/C(tn))

Take omega 3 fish oil and add some Pi to function of apple over that crazy math dude played by Russell Crowe multiplied by Sudoki index you got from the last airplane flight and you have your Pagerank. Just kidding…..

To calculate the PageRank for a page, all of its inbound links are taken into account. These are links from within the site and links from outside the site.

A page’s PageRank = 0.15 + 0.85 * (a “share” of the PageRank of every page that links to it)

“share” = the linking page’s PageRank divided by the number of outbound links on the page.

So to try and simplify. The PR is .85 multiplied by your share of every PR of pages that link to you. So if a page has a rank of 8 and their are 8 outbound links on the page, your share is .85 * of the PR of that site divided by the number of outlinks.

So……

The PageRank of a page that links to yours is important but the number of links on that page is also important. The more links there are on a page, the less PageRank value your page will receive from it.

BUT….

The PR scale is logarithmic. So a page of PR 2 with 1 link could still be worth less than a site with PR 8 with 100 links. Because this is a trade secret of Google’s we are not sure what that value multiplier is, people are just sure there is one.

Whichever scale Google uses, we can be sure of one thing. A link from another site increases our site’s PageRank. Just remember to avoid links from link farms. These are sites that are specifically designed to game the system, and they can hurt you.

  • Note that when a page votes its PageRank value to other pages, its own PageRank is not reduced by the value that it is voting, but your internal pages lose PR to the outside world (more on this subject later)
  • However, pages do lose some PageRank indirectly, as we’ll see later.

There is a problem

Some of you may have noticed that page ranking is dynamic and organic and because everything is moving constantly on the interweb, at any given time your ranking is out of date. And yes this is true, which is why it is calculated iteratively over time, then updated.

Internal Linking (source: Webworkshop)

Fact: A website has a maximum amount of PageRank that is distributed between its pages by internal links.

You can achieve a certain PR by internal links but not exceed it. So your PR is a function of internal linking and content depth.

Fact: The maximum amount of PageRank in a site increases as the number of pages in the site increases.

This is the law of more content. So blogging is good for the soul and good for the Page Rank. You also need to understand this in order to optimize your blog and maximize your internal PR.

Fact: By linking poorly, it is possible to fail to reach the site’s maximum PageRank, but it is not possible to exceed it.

What linking internally will do will maximize your internal PR. To increase this limit you need either to add more content or get backlinks to your site OR into your site. However that is not to say you don’t need to optimize your site.

[Word of Caution: The Search Overlords know when you are duplicating content, so don’t try it.]

Now you know the basics of what Page Rank is, the next time we will discuss good practices to build your Page Rank and Google Goodness.

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6 comments

  1. The more backlinks you get to your website, the higher the PR will be. But you need to find dofollow links (that do not have the ‘nofollow’). Also, google has a lot of filtering algorithms, so getting to many links at a short time might get you banned.