PageRank Zero Does Not Mean Google Penalty; Says Google (Correction)

Dec 18, 2007 • 7:56 am | comments (15) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Google Search Engine Optimization

A topic most SEOs already know, but it is nice to have confirmation from Google. A Google Groups thread has Googlers responding to a Webmaster who's site dropped from a PageRank 4 to a PageRank of 0. It appears this site saw a drop in PageRank, but not a drop in rankings, because it has done Paid Review posts without a disclaimer, said Google.

Anyhow, I would just move all the paid posts to a category "paid reviews", add a disclaimer to each saying, this is a paid review, then nofollow the link to the company to not share any pagerank.

Then when one member suggested complying with Google's recommendation and then submitting a reinclusion request, Google said not to bother.

Excuse me, but what reason do you see to file for reconsideration? I already see nofollows in there and the site appears to be doing fine. Not seeing PR does not mean a penalty.

So all the PageRank reductions, most without any traffic drops means those sites were not penalized. If you read the thread carefully, you will notice how the Googler keeps sharing how well the site ranks and that PageRank, in this case, is not an important factor.

Forum discussion at Google Groups.

Clarification: Admin Aaron is not a Google admin. Google did recommend sending a reinclusion request in this case. Google did not say it was a penalty, but they did not say it was a penalty. In either case, the site ranks incredibly well with a PR0. Sorry for the mis-information, I am still under the weather.

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12/18/2007 02:44 pm

Weel, from my point of view, there is a panalty. You see, almost everyone outside the SEO industry thinks PR is THE factor that says how valuabe a site is, and is a metric that shows up easily (just look at that bar). So, it is easy to sell paid reviews if you can say "buy a review here, I'm PR5". If you can't say that, you may find a hard time educating your clients. So, if there is no penalty regarding your rankings, I thing there is a commercial penalty. Google is very, very clever.


12/18/2007 03:04 pm

The quotes you mentioned are from Aaron who is a great help in the groups but not from Google. For a reply by a Googler, check the posting from Wysz at

CVOS man

12/18/2007 11:50 pm

See matt and vanessa <a href="">discuss</a> the pagerank update - basically if you sell links expect your PR to decrease.

Matt Cutts

12/19/2007 03:42 am

Hey Barry, hope you feel better soon. Your "I'm feeling green" post on Carton Barry was a little scary. :)

Kevin W

12/19/2007 06:17 pm

If Google doesn't think killing your PR, even if it leaves your SERPs alone, is a penalty then why would they bother to reduce your PR in the first place? Isn't the fact that this action is meant as punishment enough proof that they know differently?

Chris Marshall

12/19/2007 09:05 pm

Low PR has become a "scarlet letter" to channel the flow of advertising dollars. Sure it is no punishment--unless you are trying to run an online business!

Kevin W

12/19/2007 09:28 pm

Exactly. Intentional or not, when Google assigns PR they are either endorsing or condemning a site's advertising value. This wouldn't be such a bad thing if the tool bar PR was accurate and up to date, but it is neither. As an example, I have one site that has had tons of SEO and promotion that has a PR of 4 while another site with only one incoming link (from another of my sites, just to get it found) achieved PR 5 in 3 weeks.... and the link came from a PR 4 site!

ronnie ferez

12/19/2007 11:14 pm

If indeed the dropped in the PR is not a penalty, why imposed? I find it really inconsistent on google's part.


12/20/2007 06:08 am

I still find the focus on PR misplaced. I would much rather have a site that ranks on highly on the SERPS than a site with a high PR. A site with a high PR is like a well built site with no SEO - a white elephant.


02/19/2008 04:58 pm

As an example, I have one site that has had tons of SEO and promotion that has a PR of 4 while another site with only one incoming link...

Karen Weil

09/18/2009 05:28 pm

My site has been up less than three months. It shows up high on narrow searches that include a city name, and has trended steadily up. So now this toolbar thingie told me it's a 0. I'm concerned more with what people think it means.


03/09/2011 08:30 pm

I say. Just kill the PR. It just for show anyway.


05/03/2012 08:21 pm

Does anyone know exactly how long it takes before google will get rid of the PR zero?  I was at the n/a but now showing zero, I didnt know if it takes a few months or weeks?

Makanja Bagus

07/01/2013 08:58 am

I really do not understand anything of it at all. Some people say this some people say that. Is there really any relevance on this??

Suesh Khatri

12/15/2013 12:20 pm

my blog page rank is -1. Please tell me what is the meaning of -1 page rank?

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