What is Google PageRank?

Updated: Google no longer features PageRank in their toolbar and the importance on PageRank has been greatly diminished in recent years.

Google PageRank Explained

Online marketers have used Google Pagerank as a measuring stick to help determine the internet authority of a particular website and it’s ability to rank well in search engines. According to Google, it’s just one factor out of 200 signals used to help measure the search engine value of a web page. Each web page indexed by Google is given a score from 1-10.

… When Google was founded, one key innovation was PageRank, a technology that determined the “importance” of a webpage by looking at what other pages link to it, as well as other data. Today we use more than 200 signals, including PageRank, to order websites, and we update these algorithms on a weekly basis.

Why should you be concerned with Pagerank (PR)? While it’s only 1 out of 200 factors search engines use, it is still an indicator. Below are some additional factors to consider when researching websites using the Google toolbar. Every indexed page in Google should fall into one of the three categories below.

PageRank Explained

PR Rank (1-10) – Generally the higher the better. Most sites fall in the 1-4 range, with few higher authority sites on the web such as large media websites like CNN.com or WSJ.com in the 8-10 range.

PR Rank (0) – A “0” ranking is not good sign for a website, especially if it’s the home page. This could mean that Google has placed the site on a list of potential spam websites or even worse, removed all pages but the home page from it’s index.

PR Grey bar – Google may not have indexed this page and/or assigned a value to the website. This doesn’t mean the page or site has no value.

Some SEOs and marketers will tell you that Pagerank means very little when trying to rank well in search engines. It is true that what you see in the Google toolbar is just a snapshot in time, your Pagerank generally will not fluctuate much month to month. Over time, it becomes harder and harder to increase your PR score as Google continues to up the ante.

What other tools or data do you use to help measure the value of a website?