PageRank – Want To Know How Google Ranks Your Webpage?

This post was written by Internet Marketing John on October 1, 2014
Posted Under: Search Engine Optimization

Google uses two factors to rank your webpage; relevance and authority.

 

Relevance:

relevance

relevance

Google is a search engine, and as such much provide a relevant search result for the search query that is presented to it.   In order for Google to properly rank your site, you need to make Google understand what your website is all about.

Because the search engines are not human, they cannot distinguish between words that mean the same thing; like trolly and tram, or plane (as in airplane) and plane (shaving wood).

For the search engines to correctly identify your site, you need to write your content in the language that the search engines understand.  This is called keyword identification and is nothing more than providing the search engines with the language that your customers use to find your website.

The process of discovering the language that your customers use to locate your site is called keyword research and is something we spend a great deal of time on.

Keyword research is extremely important for effective Search Engine Optimization.  The kicker is that Google has improved to the point that they now use Latent Semantic Indexing which could make keyword research moot.  By the way, Latent Semantic Indexing simply means that Google understands synonyms.

If and when this occurs, it could be huge,  but for now we need to continue researching keywords and use them to create good content.  Then Google will recognize that your site is relevant and rank your site accordingly.

Good keyword research gives Google a sense of the terms that people are using and those that are directly relevant to your business.  When you use a keyword research tool to discover a list of keywords, pick the ones that most closely identify your site and build your content around those keywords.

If you create a logical structure with keyword based navigation, Google will rank your site for those keywords.  If your home page is about “fishing equipment”, you could have category pages for “fresh water” and another for “salt water” with subcategories under each for “fishing rods”, “fishing reels”, “hard baits”, “soft baits”, etc.  By logically creating your site in this manner, Google will better understand the content and is more likely to direct traffic in your direction.

The more quality content you provide for the search engines, the more keywords you will rank for and the more traffic you will receive.

 

Authority:

Authority

Authority

Google’s search engine business depends on how reliable and accurate their answers are to search engine queries.  They must return a correct search result that directs the user to a reliable website.

Humans instinctively understand authority.  When we read something on the front page of the Wall Street Journal, we instinctively believe that it is more truthful than an article posted on a random blog.

Google does not have this innate ability and must assume that people will link to the websites they trust, that offer them something of value, are newsworthy, or are interesting.

This is where PageRank plays a role in identifying an authority site.

Google assigns each site a rank number between 1 and 10.  A site rated 1 has the lowest authority and a site ranked 10 is the highest and most difficult to attain.  Only 11 sites have a PageRank of 10 as of this posting.

Several factors are used to determine PageRank but generally the more quality links a site has, the higher the site’s PageRank will be.  This is why webmasters are constantly trying to get more people to link to their site.

Link building is is important to PageRank, but to really improve your PageRank you need quality links.

Not all links are equal and although any link is better than no link, quality links are what really improve the PageRank on a website.

What is a quality link?  It is a link that most people will want to visit to find what they want online.  All quality links are not equal.  Although a quality link will improve your PageRank, it may not help you rank for the relevant term being searched for.

For example, Home Depot is an authoritative site if you are looking for building materials but not if you are searching for tropical fish.  A link from Pet Smart would be more relevant and authoritative.

Google looks at the links that websites attract in order to determine what the site is all about.

When people link to Pet Smart, they will probably use search terms like tropical fish, pet supplies, dog and cat food, aquariums, etc.  These search terms that are used in the content on your site are called “anchor text”.

Every inbound link will benefit your site to some extent, but to rank for specific terms like the ones above, you need those exact terms reflected in the anchor text of the links coming into your site. Anchor text links have more authority with Google.

Where your quality links come from also matters in how Google ranks your web pages.

Google understands that authoritative websites do not normally link to non-authoritative sites.  Quality sites link to other quality sites in their “league” so to speak.  This linking generally holds true online which is why a link from one of the authoritative websites will greatly improve the authority of your site when you manage to acquire one.

By association, the more links you get from quality sites, the more quality your site will have in the eyes of the search engines.  Conversely, the more low quality links you receive from sites that are inferior to yours, the lower the quality of your site.  In fact links from “bad” sites can actually do a great deal of damage to your PageRank.

So what exactly is a “bad site”?

Bad sites are those you wouldn’t like to show your wife.  Porn sites, gambling sites, sites selling erectile enhancement products, some pharmaceutical sites, etc.  These sites are sites you do not want inbound links from, in fact you don’t want inbound links from websites that even link to those sites.  Those links are referred to as links from “bad neighborhoods”.

Unfortunately you have no control over sites that link to you,  so you need to make sure that you have a strong link profile to offset any bad links that may be coming in to your site.  For every “bad” link you get from a site or from a site in a “bad neighborhood”, you need at least one quality site to offset it.

Social media interaction also has some bearing on PageRank but is too involved to get into here.  Suffice to say that if your website is “shared” a lot on Facebook or has a lot of “Tweets” on Twitter, it will help your PageRank.

Although there are other factors that Google uses to rank your webpage, the gist of their decision making is all about relevance and authority.

Be guided accordingly when creating new posts.

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