Is Google PageRank Still Relevant?
There was a time when SEO was a tool aimed at increasing a metric called PageRank. Back then, improving PageRank was synonymous with increasing your website’s credibility and authenticity. It was the primary hurdle to gaining higher rankings and organic traffic. In recent years, however, PageRank is rarely mentioned. So, is Google PageRank still relevant? How important is it for your ranking? Let’s take a look.
What is Google PageRank?
Pages are rated on a logarithmic scale, with 0 being the lowest score and 10, the highest. Higher PageRank indicates highly credible pages and will lead to a higher ranking in the search results. There was a toolbar that would display the PR of any page you visited. In 2016, Google removed this toolbar since SEO analysts were obsessively trying to manipulate the PR.
The Importance of PageRank
Though it’s no longer visible to the public eye, PR is still an important ranking metric in Google. Backlinks are the foundation of SEO, which means Google PageRank is still relevant and matters in SERP rankings. You don’t have to spend time solely on improving PageRank. But creating high-quality backlinks are undeniably effective in boosting your SEO. It will make your web pages more relevant and credible. By doing so, your PageRank will also improve.
Factors affecting PageRank
Now that you know what PageRank is, the next question in your mind would be the factors that influence PageRank. The main determinants of PR are:
Backlinks are crucial in bringing the required “link juice” to your sites. Building backlinks boost the growth of your website and are an infallible SEO tactic. As high authority websites link to your page, your PageRank will also increase accordingly.
2. Internal Linking
Internal linking is one of the most effective yet underrated SEO tactics. Using an internal link to pass PageRank from one page to the next can positively impact your site traffic and ranking.
Your homepage will always have the highest score as most websites link to the home page. The homepage also usually has the highest traffic, attributing to it greater importance than the rest of the pages. So, every link connecting the homepage and another page in your site will increase the authority of the linked page. Ensure the best, most important content is always kept close to the homepage.
PageRank depends on both internal and external links. If there are any orphan pages, i.e., if there are pages that don’t have any links, fix them.
3. External Linking
As we’ve seen already, links are the backbone of PageRank (and SEO). There’s a myth that linking external pages from your content can harm your PageRank. However, that is not true.
External links don’t hurt you, even if more links in a page leads to a lower value for each link. Not adding any external link can make Google doubt your credibility but avoid crowding your pages with outbound links. Adding helpful links will also make your customers trust you more.
Popular studies also suggest a positive connection between SERP rankings and the external links on a page. Try to minimize the use of nofollow links to sponsored posts. Broken external links can adversely affect customer’s experience. So, do regular checkups and ensure there are no broken links on your pages.
Backlink: A link in a website that directs you to another website when you click on it.
Nofollow link: Links with nofollow HTML tag which tells search engines to ignore the link.