A Google employee named Lawrence Page, started a personal side project, a system to rank web sites (not web pages) in order of popularity. This system is now being implemented and incorporated into Google’s ranking system.
In addition to link relevance for search terms, PageRank will be considered to give popular websites an advantage due to already having something of value based on popular history. This is most useful when search terms are 1 or 2 keywords or a string of common keywords where results can be massive. For “long-tail” keywords or unique keywords, content relevancy will be the main factor.
Over the years Search Engine Optimization has become an enormous industry on its own and will become even larger in the years to come. As of 2013 the SEO industry will account for $40 billion/yr and will double, triple, or more by 2019.
To lockdown search engine page placement 10-11 years ago, when Google was still in it’s beta stages was a fairly simple task. However, today search engines constantly change their algorithms; a #1 ranking today can be gone tomorrow. If you find a system that works and you’re able to earn an income, it’s one of the best feelings in the world to see money coming in 24/7. But like in many cases time is your enemy. The internet constantly evolves and what you are working on now will most likely become obsolete in a year.
Why so many changes?
The biggest enemy to content producers are “scrapers”. Scrapers are low life scavengers that will copy your content and by doing so either dilute your search page placement or search engines discount all same content as spam. They do this by delegating everybodys listing much lower or in some cases delete the placement completely. A high PageRank will cut through the imposters and keep your search engine placement intact. However, scrapers do this 24/7 and have created backlinks that keeps their PR high as well. It’s a hard battle. For everything good you do, others will steal it.
Creating “backlinks” is the key for building a higher PageRank (PR).
What is a backlink? A backlink is where you post a comment on a web site that includes your site information, which in turn is viewed as a referral from that site, making it a popular link. In short, you make a post on somebody else’s web site where that post links back to your web site. There are few programs that automate this process, called backlink creators/generators. PRStorm was one that used blogs. It would go to any blog site you would feed it and post what ever you wanted. Blog site owners spit blood when this happened. A backlink creator is a cheat, a version of spam targeting blog sites. You need about 2000 target URL’s to get real results.
The more you learn about PageRank, the more you will have to learn about the larger world of Search Engine Optimization. For more information, go to Wikipedia and read about “PageRank”.
To a spider, www.domain.com/, domain.com/, www.domain.com/index.html and domain.com/index.html are different urls and, therefore, different pages. Surfers arrive at the site’s home page whichever of the urls are used, but spiders see them as individual urls, and it makes a difference when working out the PageRank. It is better to standardize the url you use for the site’s home page. Otherwise each url can end up with a different PageRank, whereas all of it should have gone to just one url.
If you think about it, how can a spider know the filename of the page that it gets back when requesting www.domain.com/ ? It can’t. The filename could be index.html, index.htm, index.php, default.html, etc. The spider doesn’t know. If you link to index.html within the site, the spider could compare the 2 pages but that seems unlikely. So they are 2 urls and each receives PageRank from inbound links. Standardizing the home page’s url ensures that the Pagerank it is due isn’t shared with ghost urls.
Example: Go to my UK Holidays and UK Holiday Accommodation site – how’s that for a nice piece of link text Wink. Notice that the url in the browser’s address bar contains “www.”. If you have the Google Toolbar installed, you will see that the page has PR5. Now remove the “www.” part of the url and get the page again. This time it has PR1, and yet they are the same page. Actually, the PageRank is for the unseen frameset page.
When this article was first written, the non-www URL had PR4 due to using different versions of the link URLs within the site. It had the effect of sharing the page’s PageRank between the 2 pages (the 2 versions) and, therefore, between the 2 sites. That’s not the best way to do it. Since then, I’ve tidied up the internal linkages and got the non-www version down to PR1 so that the PageRank within the site mostly stays in the “www.” version, but there must be a site somewhere that links to it without the “www.” that’s causing the PR1.
Imagine the page, www.domain.com/index.html. The index page contains links to several relative urls; e.g. products.html and details.html. The spider sees those urls as www.domain.com/products.html and www.domain.com/details.html. Now let’s add an absolute url for another page, only this time we’ll leave out the “www.” part – domain.com/anotherpage.html. This page links back to the index.html page, so the spider sees the index pages as domain.com/index.html. Although it’s the same index page as the first one, to a spider, it is a different page because it’s on a different domain. Now look what happens. Each of the relative urls on the index page is also different because it belongs to the domain.com/ domain. Consequently, the link stucture is wasting a site’s potential PageRank by spreading it between ghost pages.