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Is PageRank Dead or Still Used?

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Introduction to PageRank in SEO

In the domain of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), PageRank has been a subject of extensive discussion. Originally introduced by Google to gauge the significance of website pages through links, PageRank was a critical factor in search rankings. This segment explores the origins of PageRank and its initial impact on SEO practices.

The Foundation of PageRank

The PageRank algorithm, crafted by Google’s founders, relies on the principle that pages with numerous high-quality backlinks are deemed more important. Drawing inspiration from academic citation practices, this approach revolutionised SEO strategies.

The Visibility of PageRank and Its Decline

PageRank scores were once made accessible via Google’s Toolbar, serving as a coveted metric for digital marketers. However, the discontinuation of Toolbar PageRank updates in 2013 and its eventual removal in 2016 led to declarations of PageRank’s demise.

The Enduring Essence of PageRank

Despite the absence of visible scores, PageRank’s core principles remain integral to Google’s ranking algorithms, emphasizing the continued importance of backlink quality and quantity in search engine rankings.

Misconceptions Surrounding PageRank’s Relevance


The confusion regarding PageRank’s current role mainly arises from distinguishing between the defunct Toolbar PageRank and the ongoing algorithmic application, highlighting that the PageRank algorithm is still a fundamental aspect of Google’s page evaluation process.

The Evolution of SEO Strategies

Modern SEO approaches have expanded to include a diverse range of factors beyond backlinks, such as content quality and user experience. This reflects the dynamic nature of SEO and the need for a comprehensive optimization strategy.

Alternative Metrics in the SEO Community

With Toolbar PageRank’s obsolescence, SEO professionals have turned to other metrics like Moz’s Domain Authority and Ahrefs’ URL Rating to assess a website’s link profile and authority, indicating a shift towards new standards in evaluating SEO success.

Conclusion: The Ongoing Relevance of PageRank

While the explicit PageRank score is no longer available, the foundational principles of PageRank continue to influence Google’s ranking mechanisms. This enduring relevance underscores the importance of quality backlinks and valuable content in maintaining a strong online presence, amidst the evolving landscape of SEO.


Guy Tomlinson

Guy Tomlinson is the owner and founder of SEO CoPilot Ltd. As an organic SEO specialist and SEO trainer with over 15 years of experience, he has the knowledge when it comes to helping small businesses succeed online – and shares his expertise through SEO CoPilot’s blog (mentioned in Top SEO Blogs to Follow). Follow Guy’s profile on LinkedIn for more SEO Tips!
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