Page Rank – Is This as Important as We are Lead to Believe?

In the world of Internet marketing, a website’s Page Rank has been considered one of the most important aspects of defining credibility.  Is this valid or just more Google hype?  Everyone wants to do what Google wants because they believe if they play by the rules they will achieve higher search engine results if applying proper SEO.  For the most part I suppose that is true.

So we are all clear, Page Rank is a patented algorithm owned by Google and is essentially “Google’s opinion”.  However, everyone cares about Google’s opinion and in the general marketplace, a good search result equals credibility.  Without going into too much detail, Page Rank considers the credibility and relevance of a website primarily by the quality and number of inbound links.  The original algorithm suggests that inbound links are “votes” for that website.  The algorithm defines the quality of those links by reviewing the sites they come from.

Now, what does all this mean?  Page Rank assigns a level from 1 to 10; 10 being the highest.  Generally speaking, anything 5 and above is “good”.  Some common misconceptions are that the amount and uniqueness of content affect PR improvements – this is not part of the algorithm.  High PR does not mean a site will rank well in the search engines.  Directory submissions will not improve PR.  High value sites such as .edu or .gov will not automatically improve a website’s PR.  Basically, Google is trying to find pages that are both reputable and relevant.  If Google sees two sites that have virtually the same purpose and content, it may review inbound links.  However, the quality of inbound links may still not mean that Google will decide that the page is more relevant and deserves a higher PR.

Any Internet marketing company will discuss Page Rank with clients as their search engine optimization levels improve.  However, too much emphasis is placed on this.  Many companies sell their sites and service solely on page rank.  This is very true for sites that sell pay-per-post advertising, which Google frowns upon.  That is actually a whole new topic for a later date.  The bottom line is that for websites to achieve good rankings, they need to focus on sound white hat SEO tactics.  Forget about Page Rank.  And if Google doesn’t want companies selling their pay-per-post services due to high PR’s then they should remove it from their toolbar.

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