Content Marketing Blog

Google’s PageRank becoming less reliable

Google's PageRank has been a useful tool to measure the popularity and value of a website, but in recent years this tool has become less reliable.

As online marketing becomes more competitive, many are adopting other ways to measure their website's performance, and it seems likely that PageRank will soon become obsolete.

PageRank is an algorithm that determines the numerical weight of a site, and is a feature on the Google Toolbar for Internet Explorer. Although Firefox dropped the feature in 2011 and Chrome never offered it, many still continue to use the tool as an add-on.

Earlier this year, Google's head of search spam Matt Cutts said that PageRank is used by many browsers to determine the reputability of a site, and not just by those in the SEO industry.

"A lot of people do use it, and I believe we will continue to support those people while they continue to use the Google toolbar," Cutts said in a Google Webmaster video.

However, Search Engine Land's News Editor Barry Schwartz is skeptical, stating that the tool hasn't been updated in over six months and that Internet Explorer 10 doesn't allow add-ons like PageRank. 

"Google’s failure to update the PageRank values might effectively be killing it," argued Schwartz on his website.

Simplicity is perhaps the main reason behind PageRank's popularity, but content marketing has become far more complicated than it once was and other factors have come into the equation, meaning that this tool no longer accurately reflects a website's performance.

Recent statistics released by Axonn Research revealed that 80 per cent of marketers rely on website traffic to measure the performance of their content. The results also revealed that 62 per cent of the interviewees rely on their search engine ranking. Content marketing is thus important because Google rewards websites that have fresh and original content.

Posted by Dylan Brown