Why Google Page Rank is a Useless Metric to Rely On

Why Google Page Rank is a Useless Metric to Rely On

For those who came in late I am well aware that the Google Page Rank data is no longer available. However a lot of SEO’s that I meet even today are still stuck up considering Page Rank (PR) as the be all and end all for ranking in the SERP’s.

This article is my attempt at convincing them that Google PR was never a good metric to take into account to begin with while planning digital marketing efforts.

For those who are not really familiar with Page Rank, it was one of the earliest algorithms used by Google developed by founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page in 1996 as part of their Stanford University research project. The duo thought about creating a hierarchy of web information based on link popularity.

The more links that were created to a certain website guaranteed higher Page Rank scores. In 1998, Page Rank was introduced alongside the establishment of Google as a search engine.

Even in the old days of PR availability a study by MOZ did not show a crazy correlation between PR and rankings. The highest possible correlation coefficient between Page Rank and their position in SERP’s was only +0.20 for Google. Google’s UK version only managed a correlation coefficient of +0.09 while Bing got +0.17 and Yahoo had +0.04.

correlation between page rank and rankings

Statistically speaking, Page Rank alone cannot really be considered a major factor in ranking high on SERP’s anymore. It just goes to show that there are simply other parameters that the world’s search engines are integrating into their search ranking algorithms than just Page Rank.

Here’s another reason why Google Page Rank simply has outlived its purpose. PR was primarily a function of link volume and strength and not so much relevance. Post Panda and Penguin the emphasis has been able topical relevance so in the current scenario a high PR number would still not relate to high rankings unless relevance has been taken into account.

Lastly, Google does not update its Page Rank scores on a daily basis. This is because Google believes you don’t need to be overly obsessed about Page Rank scores. What Google wants websites to do is to provide value to end-users as well as provide solutions to their everyday problems. Google does update its PR scores but they simply don’t show you so that you can focus more on improving the overall quality of your website. This is what Google really wants you to focus on.

I believe that PR really lead to web abuse and SEO’s are better off without them. The only tool you now need to use to make backlinking decisions is common sense – don’t be scared to use it.

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