Many things have been said about the recent toolbar PageRank update. Most tend to agree that PageRank has lost relevance and that we shouldn’t place too much importance on it. Most of us feel it’s time to move on and stop talking about it. I’ll do that, but not until I’ve had a final say on the matter.
On A Positive Note
Firstly, some sites, mine included, have received a good PageRank. I am very happy that my site is PR4. I’ve worked hard and waited a long time for the update. I was expecting PR1 or PR2 at best, so I am thrilled with PR4.
However, it’s a little hollow, because so many sites have ranked lower than they should (then again maybe mine is ranked too high).
Sites That Should Be Higher
I’m only naming a few sites that I read regularly. There are many more that deserve to be higher, that I’m not aware of right now.
I’ll start with authority blogger Andy Beard, whose site should be PR 6 in my opinion. PR4 is just wrong. This is a definitive case showing that PageRank is not an accurate reflection of a site’s worth.
The following are other great sites that I read regularly, which are definitely worth more than the PR3 they’ve been given:
All of these sites serve up quality content on a regular basis. They have a much larger body of work than my site and many more backlinks. I know my DualFeeds plugin boosted my PR a lot, but I just can’t understand how their PR is lower than mine. It’s incredulous!
What Can I Do About It?
Stop using Google. I’ve read people suggest this. Would it work? Probably not. Even 10,000 bloggers abandoning Google probably wouldn’t have any effect. Am I willing to do it? Honestly, no. Some of their tools are very useful and I would find it hard to give them up. And as Josh points out Google Brings Traffic – Why Boycott it? But full marks for Maurice who stopped using Google tools even before the recent PageRank penalties.
Promote other alternatives. Many of us are Google centric, but there are other options out there. We can easily promote these options, instead of, or as well as, Google. We should be doing this anyway!
Pass on the link love. I’m going to try to link to the sites I listed above more often. Of course I’ll only link to them only when it’s relevant. As I already link to them fairly often, it probably won’t have much effect, but it’s the least I can do. I’ll try to give good quality links rather than making the common linking mistakes encountered on blogs outlined by Andy.
Move on, remembering that PageRank isn’t really relevent. It’s time for us to do this. Things like traffic and subscriptions are more important. Hopefully advertisers will stop using PR to measure the worth of sites.
So Is Google Evil?
When the first round of penalties kicked off, RT asked Is Google Evil Now?
I don’t think they are. I think they just have a different agenda from us bloggers. It’s their search engine, it’s their PageRank system and they can do what they like with them. My real frustration with Google is that they aren’t open enough about what’s happening and aren’t specific enough about the rules. No one really is really sure what’s okay and what’s not.
Getting slapped for something you thought was okay is a lot worse than getting slapped for something you knew was naughty.
If PageRank is not an accurate reflection any more, can someone else come up with an alternative ranking system, which is fair and updated regularly?
There have been other ranking systems but they weren’t adopted widely. To be successful, such a system would have to be introduced by a big name.
My original thought, first voiced in the comments of Reflections On The Google Slapfest, is that Yahoo would be the ideal candidate. They must have a private ranking system already and they’d love to deal a blow to Google.
However, I found Yahoo already tried this back in 2004 (or thereabouts). Yahoo called their system Webrank, but it seems to have been abandoned long ago. When I searched for information on it, what I mostly found was webmasters saying that it was just a poor copy of PageRank and it wasn’t worth worrying about. So, to an extant, we’ve made our own bed.
It’s worth noting that I also found complaints about Yahoo applying penalties. Sound familiar?
Maybe it just isn’t going to get any better. Or maybe we are underestimating how hard it is to make systems covering such a massive number of sites work successfully. Still I’d like to see Yahoo have a go.
What I Won’t Be Doing
I won’t be stopping writing sponsored posts. Adsense: 35 cents in a month; Sponsored Posts: $16 for one post (on a topic I’d write about anyway). If you can pass my Maths Comment Spam Protection, you can add this up!
I won’t be cloaking Nofollows so only Google sees them – Thanks Lucia.
And I won’t be talking about this any more. Well maybe in the comments. 🙂
The Final Word
I’ve said my piece. Now I’m moving on…