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What is Google PageRank?

What is Google PageRank?

PageRank is Google’s technology for rating the importance and quality of a web page. It is one of the variables used by Google to determine how high your site will be placed in the Search Engine Results Pages (SERP).

The PageRank of a website is represented by a number from one to ten. The higher the number, the more important the website is.

Google PageRank was developed by Larry Page and Sergey Brin, the founders of Google, during their time as graduate students at Stanford University. Introduced in the late 1990s, PageRank fundamentally transformed how search engines assessed the significance and relevance of web pages in search results.

During its early years, PageRank was a groundbreaking concept that revolutionized the way search engines ranked websites. It marked a departure from traditional methods that primarily considered the number of links pointing to a page, introducing the novel idea of assessing the quality and authority of these links.

The exact algorithm that is used to calculate PageRank is kept secret by Google. The algorithm is constantly being enhanced with new features and criteria for content analysis.

How to check PageRank?

There are different websites and browser toolbars that can show you the PageRank of your website. One of them is https://www.prchecker.info/. You can use it for a quick PageRank check. You can also place a PageRank “badge” on your page to display your rank dynamically.

The PageRank displayed by all online tools is called Public PageRank and it is updated every few months. However, the actual PageRank of your pages is calculated dynamically. Unfortunately, only Google knows your exact PageRank at a given moment.

How Does PageRank Work?

Distribution of Link Equity

One of PageRank’s foundational principles is the distribution of link equity, often referred to as “voting power.” In essence, the algorithm allocated this equity to pages based on the links they contained, and the more links a page had, the more it shared its equity with others. This concept was pivotal in understanding how search engines ranked web pages.

Calculation and Representation

PageRank values were originally displayed to the public on a scale from 0 to 10 in the Google Toolbar, providing a visible indicator of a page’s perceived authority. The intricate calculation process took into account the entire web’s link structure, making it a complex but essential aspect of Google’s search methodology.

Factors Influencing PageRank

Quality vs. Quantity of Backlinks

PageRank’s emphasis on quality over quantity of backlinks was a defining feature. Pages with a limited number of high-quality backlinks often outperformed those with numerous but low-quality links.

Internal Linking Structure

The way a website’s internal pages were interconnected also played a significant role in PageRank distribution. A well-structured internal linking system helped ensure that valuable link equity flowed to essential pages.


PageRank, a pioneering concept in the world of SEO, has left an enduring legacy. While it may no longer be the primary metric guiding search engine optimization, the principles it introduced continue to shape SEO strategies and the understanding of link authority and equity. SEO has evolved beyond PageRank, but its influence persists in the background.

Google PageRank FAQs

1. Is Google PageRank still used by Google for ranking websites at the moment?

No, Google no longer uses public PageRank values as a primary ranking factor. It has shifted to a more complex set of algorithms and factors to assess website authority and relevance.

2. What are some alternatives to Google PageRank for assessing website authority?

Alternative metrics such as Moz Domain Authority, Ahrefs Domain Rating, Majestic Trust Flow, and SEMrush Authority Score provide insights into website authority and influence.

3. Why did Google stop displaying PageRank values to the public?

Google ceased displaying public PageRank values to prevent webmasters from focusing solely on manipulating PageRank. This shift encouraged a more holistic approach to SEO that considers various factors beyond link quantity.

4. Are backlinks still important for SEO without PageRank?

Yes, backlinks remain a vital component of SEO. High-quality backlinks from authoritative sources can significantly impact a website’s authority and rankings.

5. How can I improve my website’s authority without public PageRank?

To enhance your website’s authority, concentrate on creating high-quality, relevant content and acquiring natural backlinks from reputable sources. Additionally, prioritize user experience, mobile-friendliness, and technical SEO to boost overall website quality and performance.

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