Google PageRank is History
September 5, 2016
Google PageRank is history. The 1 to 10 PageRank scores, previously accessible from the Google Toolbar, Firefox Add-on or Google Chrome extension are no longer visible. It’s uncertain whether or not the data used by the PageRank scores is still a factor in the ranking algorithm for all sites that are currently indexed.
What is Google PageRank™?
PageRank started in 2000 and was active and available to the public for sixteen years before recently being removed from the Google Toolbar and then eventually discontinued altogether. Most SEO professionals would agree that PageRank was primarily influenced by the number of quality backlinks and other on-page SEO optimizations.
Google Webmaster Tools uses the analogy of a democracy when explaining PageRank and how backlinks are essentially votes for a particular website. As a result of PageRank and armed with the knowledge that backlinks improve it, hundreds and hundreds of SEO companies online started selling backlinks. This practice undermined the concept of backlinks being true and honest ‘votes’ for a particular website.
Enter the link spam and link farm era of SEO. Webmasters all around were getting as many backlinks as they possibly could. Adding links to their forum signatures and making posts for the sole purpose of building more backlinks. There were literally thousands of online SEO companies selling links. Google was noticing the drastic increase in backlinks for websites emerging and quickly determined the sources as automated link exchanges, comment spam, link selling etc. Needless to say Google was not pleased and began looking for ways to fight back and prevent this type of search engine manipulation.
In 2005, Google announced via Webmaster Tools that adding the rel=”nofollow” tag to your hyperlinks will prevent your site from passing on any PageRank credit to the linked page. Google launched the Chrome browser in 2007 and Google Toolbar usage was starting to decline. You could search Google from the address bar using Chrome and many users of Internet Explorer began to adopt the new impressive browser.
December 6th, 2013 was the last official PageRank update. With PageRank gone it’s likely that SEO enthusiasts will focus on measures such as Alexa rankings and other search engine ranking factors.