The PageRank of a website is an important aspect of search engine optimisation (SEO). By no means is it the only metric used when looking at assessing link opportunities but it is a crucial tool in the link building technique to measure the value of a website.

It refers to pages only, not domains, so for example of your homepage is PR5 this doesn’t mean you have a PR5 domain.

But what is it and how can it help your business’s overall marketing efforts?

Toolbar PageRank


This displays the site’s PageRank in the Google toolbar but it is updated at random intervals so it isn’t as up-to-date as often reported. The scaling is somewhat complex e.g. a PR7 is not 1 unit better than a PR6 but is actually x8 as important.

Real PageRank


This is used internally by Google and is a very small part of the algorithm. It is used by the search engine giant to let them know which pages are important and which it should crawl more often. It is updated multiple times a day and doesn’t reflect Toolbar PageRank at all. Never use it as the sole tool to measure a page’s quality- it is scaled from 0 to 1.


  • Raw indicator of link popularity • Shows if the site has been penalized by Google

But don’t get confused…


PageRank is not an indicator of the value of a link prospect. It isn’t a reflection of the relevance or quality of links coming into a page, or whether a page has been flagged for spam.

What is more, PageRank is not a static reflection of a page’s quality. At one point, went from a PR10 to PR9 but surely you would still want a link from that page? And even if you have a higher PageRank that doesn’t necessarily mean you are ranking above another site.

Therefore you shouldn’t use PageRank alone as an indicator of performance- any reputable SEO firm will know that and use an array of link building techniques to achieve high quality, relevant links.

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Understanding Ranking Factors

A good amount of new online entrepreneurs sometimes fall prey to thinking that achieving search rankings for their brand spanking new URL should and will come easy. With a few sprinkles of this and a dash of that before you know it success is pouring through the door, fat chance. I’m sorry to burst your bubble but rankings and success online do take time, patience and a whole lot of business brand building. If you are new to the online game you have to ask yourself, why do I deserve being on the first page?Are you in a competitive space that took others years to get to? If so why do you think you deserve being there in just a few short months? You have to understand some of the important ranking factors that exist in the search algorithm before you are set on ranking quickly.

Age of Domain

This is an important one to understand. If you just launched a brand new domain name it will take some time to achieve any rankings especially if your space is somewhat competitive. Search engines really like aged domains.


There is such a thing called trust factor in the search engines especially Google. Have you had a chance to build up your trust in the eyes of the search engines? This is something that happens naturally over time so don’t expect to hire someone to force this effort because it won’t work. Treat your website like a brand and the trust will build naturally over time.

Onsite Optimization

Having your buddy jam keywords into your website is not going to optimize your website properly. Having a well written website that is highly optimized with your targeted keywords is very important. This means having well optimized content and along with meta info and a strategic internal linking structure.

Quality Inbound Links

Quality is the magic word here. Sure having links to your site whether they are great or just mediocre is still important but the really good links happen when you become a trusted source with something important and fresh to say. This isn’t something that can usually be forced because it is a natural occurrence when you build your business but in bound links take time so be patient.


Bringing in traffic and being accessible from a variety of sources is an important part of achieving those rankings you are looking for online. Search engines like to see you visible in many different corners online because that is what a brand would do. Finding one little nook or cranny and beating it into the ground is not the best approach for your website to grow strength in the search engines.

There are a few hundred ranking factors out there that determine how you appear in search results but these are some of the more important ones in my opinion. Take the time and research all the ranking factors so you completely understand what you need to do to achieve your business goals online.