Matt Cutts of Google on Mission to Remove PageRank from Toolbar

Dec 4, 2007 • 7:43 am | comments (9) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Google Search Engine Optimization

Many SEOs have been calling for Google to remove the PageRank score from the Google Toolbar for years now. Heck, we wrote dozens of articles on it, including these:

So Google knows about this and those who work closely with webmasters and SEOs also understand the importance of removing the PageRank score from the toolbar.

Matt Cutts posted in a Google Groups thread saying:

Personally, I wouldn't mind removing the PageRank in the Google Toolbar or swapping it with some other indicator, but that would be a large undertaking. Maybe that can be a long-term goal for me. :)

So Matt Cutts seems like he may be campaigning Google to remove that indicator from the toolbar. If anyone in Google has the influence to make that happen, it would be Matt. Matt, you have my support. ;-)

Forum discussion at Google Groups.

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Jaan Kanellis

12/04/2007 02:16 pm

Large undertaking? Simple removing from new installs would be a start.

David Eaves

12/04/2007 02:23 pm

When I had a 6/10 I was dead against it, but now that I have only got a 4 I think I would rather see it go.

Mike Tekula

12/04/2007 02:38 pm

A lot of the headaches stemming from the link broking situation probably could have been avoided had Google opted not to display PageRank in the toolbar originally. It became the currency of links. I think there is some utility to it in terms of recognizing a website that may be, in the eyes of Google, "spammy." In other words, if a site has been around for 2-3 years and they have a PageRank of zero you might not want to be affiliated with them. Maybe we can have some other indication of that moving forward? I think the "large undertaking" Matt's talking about would have a lot to do with the repercussions of removing PageRank in terms of the public outcry. Many SEOs would like to see it go, and I think I'm one of them, but how many webmasters would be up in arms if suddenly they couldn't see their PageRank? It would take quite a bit of PR work on Google's part - especially on Matt's part - to get it to go smoothly.

Thomas Schmitz

12/04/2007 06:31 pm

This is ironic. For some time now SEO practitioners have derided PageRank as being less and less important. Now, because of Google's vigorous PR and technical campaign against paid links, PageRank has been thrust into the forefront and given new credibility, if just perceived. Google does not give us many consistent signals for comparing web sites (and that is not to say PageRank is consistent). As limited as Visible Toolbar PageRank is I would only want it retired if Google commits to creating and releasing a more accurate comparative indicator or a set of indicators that enhance competitive research capabilities prior to PageRank's retirement.

Bill Kruse

12/04/2007 07:17 pm

I'm fine for visible indicators of page rank to go and not to be replaced by anything. What does it actually mean these days anyway? BB

Michael Martinez

12/05/2007 10:40 pm

People needed to buy links to get anchor text, not PageRank, until Google made PageRank a necessity by devaluing pages in the Supplemental Results Index so that they rank lower than less relevant pages in the Main Web Index. Now that Google has made the Toolbar PR value actually useful, it makes perfect sense for them to want to hide it. After all, anyone who has been tracking Toolbar PR for potential link partner sites will see which ones have been penalized. Google just needs to stop misleading people about WHY they are attacking the paid links. They're trying to make the failed model of PageRank work as advertised (it never has) but in doing so they are absolutely ruining the quality of their search results. Google, please make RELEVANCE your priority, not PageRank.


12/17/2007 09:50 am

I am personally fine with that. What is the use of PR anyway except to signal that this is a 'trusted' site (from Google perspective). But a universal agreed indicator that derive the page worth weightage will be nice to have.


11/07/2008 12:33 pm

With all visible signs of a sites value removed we could revert back to judging a site on its content and other signals of quality such as design and structure. It would IMHO help drive out the spammy link farms who survive by having a PR badge of honour. It makes perfect sense to me. d


04/03/2009 09:10 am

Just a question: where is the problem with page rank? I think it is usefull to know the importance and the trust a page, and a website, have. Why many people want to delete it ? I do not think it is the only information important to know if a website is cool or not, but i think is a part of the whole set of informations. Why fighting it ?

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