Mark Traphagen Creates Virante AuthorRank

Nov 26, 2013 • 8:21 am | comments (44) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Other Google Topics

Honestly, I am not a fan of tools that measure your reach or popularity but with social and authority becoming more of a factor, it can't hurt to try to measure yourself up.

Mark Traphagen shared on Google+ that he created Virante AuthorRank. What is it?

Virante AuthorRank is not Google AuthorRank. It is our own metric built to assess the relative search ranking strength of content produced by an individual author that is linked from that author's Google+ profile using Google Authorship.

You can try it at

Here is what mine looks like:


Compare me to Danny Sullivan who has way more followers:


Mark himself:


Matt Cutts is broken:


Forum discussion at Google+.

Previous story: Google's Matt Cutts: Why Google Use To Only Crawl 100 Links Per Page


Sunny Ujjawal

11/26/2013 01:27 pm

Strange for Matt Cutts

Mark Traphagen

11/26/2013 01:38 pm

Thanks for this Barry. I'm going to have a busy day today answering questions I can see! I would urge people to read the first post on the home page at, which gives a fuller explanation of what our tool is and what it does and does not measure. As for Matt Cutts, I'm on mobile right now but I'll check his G+ profile when I get to the office. Our tool measures only what is linked in a user's Contributor To. We're having trouble picking up some domains even then. and appreciate hearing from users who have legitimate content domains in their CT that our tool is missing. This is still very beta folks! We're working on it, and feedback is much appreciated.

Craig Hamilton-Parker

11/26/2013 01:49 pm

I noticed on mine it missed my main website that I and the main contributor. It showed other sites of mine. It had trouble with my google plus name too but found it eventually after a few tries +CraigHamiltonParker Nice tool though.


11/26/2013 02:53 pm

Reminds me of the days, when every blogger was proud to place on her/his blog sign "This page has PR3" )) Now, thanks to the guy from Theological Seminary, bloggers got ability to self pleasure themselves again ) Thank you pastor and amen ) P.S. AUTHORSHIP IS DEAD, LONG LIVE AUTHORSHIP

Saroj Nayak

11/26/2013 02:59 pm

I have better than Matt :P :P

Alexandra Petean-Nicola

11/26/2013 03:28 pm

That's quite interesting. How come Matt Cutts is broken ?

Mark Traphagen

11/26/2013 03:31 pm

Thanks for the report Craig. We're tweaking how the tool parses and picks up domains, so this is helpful.

Mark Traphagen

11/26/2013 03:35 pm

Our tool looks at domains claimed for Google Authorship, which means they have to be listed in the Contributor To part of the person's profile links section. Matt has nothing listed, so we can't score him.

Mark Traphagen

11/26/2013 03:36 pm

Let me address the issue of why Matt Cutts shows a zero score in our tool. Our tool looks at domains claimed for Google Authorship, which means they have to be listed in the Contributor To part of the person's profile links section. Matt has nothing listed, so we can't score him.

Alexandra Petean-Nicola

11/26/2013 03:57 pm

Thanks for the answer, Mark.

Durant Imboden

11/26/2013 04:07 pm

Maybe I'm missing something, but isn't Author Rank/Agent Rank/whatever supposed to vary according to the search string? I might deserve a high Author Rank for "Venice" or "European travel" (since I've been writing extensively about those topics for years), but I'd deserve a zero for, say, "Costa Rica ecotravel" or "high school algebra."


11/26/2013 04:17 pm

Not really that strange since Google+ can assign & relate authorship without Authorship Markup or the user claiming ownership.


11/26/2013 04:51 pm

Can someone answer Durant's question? Because I'm also confused.

Harsh Agrawal

11/26/2013 05:08 pm

Thanks for awesome tool @trappermark:disqus And it's very handy...After using your tool, I realised my average domain Authority score is very low...and need to work on it.... Will keep an eye on all your updates.. :)

Takeshi Young

11/26/2013 06:57 pm

This is very fun! Great link bait idea!

Mark Traphagen

11/26/2013 07:41 pm

Durant, that's Google's Author Rank (actually "agent rank," they never have used the term author rank). As we explain in our blog post at this is our own AuthorRank metric. It is NOT Google Author Rank. The tl;dr of our score is we are scoring the relative aggregate search ranking authority of the Google-Authorship-linked content of a given author. That's it. We are not attempting to provide topical authority scores.

Mark Traphagen

11/26/2013 07:41 pm


Mark Traphagen

11/26/2013 07:42 pm

Harsh that would indicate that you should be seeking higher quality sites on which to write.

Harsh Agrawal

11/26/2013 07:45 pm

@trappermark:disqus I agree that's something I need to do..and i figured out the reason for Lower Avg. domain authority, as I have few small niche blogs which are of quality but I never worked on improving back link profile or domain authority in general. That's the reason the avg. domain authority is so low... One way is to unlink my author profile from these sites, and it will be helpful to improve the score, but I will do it only once Author rank is proven as a major ranking signal...

swapnil sachdeva

11/27/2013 04:09 am

If there Exists many author's with same then it's not working as it will going to provide a single result which may or may not match.

Mark Traphagen

11/27/2013 04:12 am

Sorry, but I can't make any sense out of your sentence. Something got lost in translation.

swapnil sachdeva

11/27/2013 04:14 am

When i search for +swapnilsachdeva then it is returning a profile which is not mine but of someone else with same name.How can i find mine.

Mark Traphagen

11/27/2013 04:17 am

Well if you didn't claim that name for your Google+ profile when custom URL's were released earlier this month, then of course it's not yours. Go to your Google+ profile and copy the 21-digit ID number in your profile URL.

swapnil sachdeva

11/27/2013 04:31 am

Thanks Mark for your prompt response. Hope your this tool will be a hit.

Soni Sharma

11/27/2013 09:04 am

Why Matt Cutts author rank showing 0 on this tool?

Luana Spinetti

11/27/2013 09:22 am

Uhm, interesting. Looks like I scored a 6.07 with Mark's tool. Next question is: would it be possible to implement an Author Rank that considers standard authorship meta tags, too? Or would that require an API to work? Sorry Mark, you just sparked curiosity in the Computer Science student in me. :)

Mark Traphagen

11/27/2013 11:21 am

Please read the other comments. I already answered this.

Mark Traphagen

11/27/2013 11:26 am

Hi Luana, Not sure what you mean by "considers standard authorship meta tags, too." Do you mean finding and evaluating content that has authorship markup even if the author hasn't linked to it from his/her G+ profile? That would involve crawling the entire web, and there's no way we could do that. We aren't Google! I think the approach we took was very reasonable. We're evaluating Google Authorship content, which requires a link from an author's profile Contributor To. That means we only have to use our (rather expensive) resources (crawling the links to find the content and then doing a data pull from Moz and other resources, which costs money) whenever someone makes a request in the tool. There just isn't any way we could do that for the entire web just to find those relatively few content pages that have markup but no confirming Authorship link. If I've misunderstood what you're asking, let me know!

Yossi Medina

11/27/2013 01:27 pm

Mark, I suggest to rename "Detailed statistics" to "Ranking factors" Haven't checked the tool yet but it looks pretty cool. One factor that seems to be in there and is not listed is a "secret facial recognition" feature that scans the author's avatar and ranks the trustworthiness of the author based on their smile. Perhaps this was the deciding factor when it ranked Matt's "Author Trust" at -0-


11/27/2013 02:24 pm

Yeh +mattcutts is broken I like that ;) mine was pretty good for my expectation 5.1 not bad while a french equivalent just created gave me 7% :(


11/27/2013 03:44 pm

Why every expert needs a blog? If lots of experts have me in their circles, you should give me an authorrank even though I dont have any blog listed. Calculate my authorrank by looking at the authorranks of these other people.

Mark Traphagen

11/27/2013 03:53 pm

Andy, our tool does not look at your Google+ circles, at least not yet. It is designed (for now) to do one limited task: evaluate the relative search ranking power of web content linked via Google Authorship to a particular author profile.


11/27/2013 09:11 pm

Too bad it doesn't measure some of the core elements of what we expect in Google's author rank. Mark Traphagen has been saying for a couple of days now this has nothing to do with Google's author rank.


11/27/2013 09:13 pm

Right, Durant, this has nothing to do with real author rank. It's just a score Virante computes. I think it has more to do with the quality of sites you post on than anything.


11/27/2013 09:15 pm

Right, but it really doesn't mean anything, because this score does not really tell you if your author rank will boost you in the search results if and when author rank is implemented.

Mark Traphagen

11/27/2013 10:35 pm

Stay tuned, Al. We are already talking with some other tool and app developers about possible partnerships or mashups that could result in something that includes more elements such as social signals, Google+ profile authority, etc.


11/28/2013 11:00 am

thatz great


11/28/2013 11:01 am

congrats mark

Mark Traphagen

11/28/2013 11:40 am

Well, yes, true enough. Our tool doesn't do things it doesn't claim to do. Also baseball commentators don't tell you how many touchdowns were scored. ;-) If you want to know what out tool actually DOES do, please read

Gracious Store

12/01/2013 04:29 am

Whaoo. good job

Akash KB

12/03/2013 08:52 am

Hi @Mark @Barry - Look, how Eric Enge (my Guru) looks on Virante's Author Rank:

Amit Surti

12/19/2013 07:14 am

Cool tool Mark


01/28/2014 01:22 pm

Matt 0??? Thanx Mark Traphagen for this great tool, honestly its a LEVEL UP! 6.55 Not bad


01/28/2014 01:27 pm

Matt 0??? Thanx Mark Traphagen best tool. Level up! 6.55 not bad

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