(Toolbar) PageRank Not to Be Relied Upon

Being somewhat controversial, PageRank is one of the most discussed topics among webmasters. It was invented back in 1999 and named after Google’s co-founder and newly appointed CEO, Larry Page, and it is still greatly misinterpreted across the web community. In this article we will try and shed some light upon the actual value of Page Rank for website owners, and how it influences rankings.

OK, first of all we would like make sure you understand it the right way from the very beginning: PageRank is all about ranking PAGES and not websites. Each page of any given website is assigned to a unique PageRank value, stored in Google’s databases each time a page is crawled. However, there are two different PageRank values: one being a real number kept undisclosed by Google, and the other being publicly visible, periodically updated integer value between 0 to 10 (aka Toolbar PageRank). Such a division is deliberate and designed for Google’s own security against reverse engineering. The point we’re making here is that not all sites with Toolbar PR3 have the same actual PR value, and these values can vary greatly. That is why Toolbar PageRank is overrated as lots of websites with lower Toolbar PR value appear higher in Google’s SERPs.

In our experience there are 3 major misconceptions about Toolbar PageRank that usually affect the work and expectations of so many website owners and other web professionals. First of all, we think people should understand that Toolbar PageRank isn’t a ranking factor, it’s just an indication of the page authority in the eyes of Google. That said, we want to bring it home to you that high PageRank doesn’t guarantee high rankings. There are still so many website owners that still do not understand that as long as their pages are not relevant they won’t show up in the SERPs. PageRank is no measure of relevance, that’s why a high Toolbar PageRank value won’t guarantee increased visibility, or traffic. The third point that needs clarifying is how pages accumulate and distribute PageRank. Outbound links do not give away their own PageRank, that is, linking out does not cause PageRank loss. Linking to other pages simply means that a page is passing on its PageRank to other pages, not sharing it with them.

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