Does Google PageRank Still Matter for SEO?

As companies continue to look for ways to rank high on their search engine results page, many continue to trust in Google PageRank. Before 2016, Google would share page rank details, showing users what pages they used and ranking them between zero and ten. The organization stopped supporting PageRank, but other websites use a similar tool to decide where to rank pages on their SERP pages. Google no longer calls the service PageRank, but uses the algorithm, so businesses still need to invest in the best link building services

Google PageRank Information

The process uses an algorithm to judge a page by the number of other pages that link to it. The algorithm also looks at the quality of information on the original page and of the pages linking to it. PageRank tried to gauge how important the page was to those who use the internet. Google’s ability to differentiate pages and present reliable results to users separates it from the less popular search engines like MSN and Yahoo. PageRank became the foundation of Google’s ability to find websites that users needed. 

What PageRank Evaluated

When PageRank was busy doing its job, it looked at three metrics. The first was the quality and quantity of inbound links. Businesses still rely on inbound links to draw traffic, and the quality of the links helps. PageRanks also looked at the outbound links on the linking pages, which is why websites need to pay for quality links. When high-ranking pages connect to your site, you are more likely to rank higher on the SERP. PageRanks also consider the zero-to-ten ranking of your page before it chooses your location on the SERP. 

While PageRank as a system no longer helps websites, linking to quality pages still matters. When you link to a quality page, users are more likely to click on it, boosting your traffic and the other site’s traffic. When they have quality links, surfing the web continues and more sites benefit from connecting to other useful websites. For example, if your website has a backlink to CNN, users are likely to make their way to CNN, then to other sites. 

Why PageRank is Obsolete, but the Algorithm is Important

Because more users understand how the internet functions at the algorithmic level, Google stopped ranking pages on the zero-to-ten system. During its heyday, toolbars showed PageRank scores, so webmasters immediately knew where they stood compared to other sites. 

Stopping Link Spam

Google stopped using PageRank because users started to cheat the system with link spam. If outbound links affected ranking, users added as many links as they could - like keyword stuffing, but with links. Now, Google prefers to see sites with backlinks. While users might be tempted to add a bunch, Google doesn’t need to see a large number of them. Instead, the search engine giant now looks for quality sites with some similarities. 

Google tried other methods to stop users from manipulating their sites to high rankings. One tool was the no-follow attribute, which solved link spam, especially in blog comments. People still comment to encourage others to click on their websites, but this method does not help any websites perform better with search engine optimization. 

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