Jim Boykin hit it on the nail again with an excellent post about what he thinks Google's top 10 choices are for search results. I saw this yesterday and had a chance to chat about it last night, and figured it was definately something to point out. Of the top 10 results Google likes are ones we often are already familiar with, they are sites we strive our websites to be like, and if we have those listed we covet them.
The College Paper top 10 Listing (.edu’s). That .edu link that might not have much to do with the topic, but Google will serve you the best it can find from a college site.
The Government Paper top 10 listing (.gov’s). Again, might not have too much to do with the keyword phrase, but is best they can find from the government.
The site that has lots of edu’s and some .gov’s linking to it. Googles best guess as to who has the highest "trust rank".
A huge site’s subpage on your topic. It’s that sub page PR 0 or PR 2 page of a site that has 1,000,000+ pages, and the homepage is a PR8 - examples are Amazon, Yahoo directory page, shopping.com, etc.
The old page which hasn’t changed in 5 years. With a backlink history of slow and steady link growth.
Pages from sites that have historically held top positions, and change their content on the pages on a regular basis (Fresh newsy stuff).
New pages from old established sites (looks fresh) - they fade in and out of rankings.
Sub pages of old established sites that just got a bunch of backlinks which co incided with new content on that page. (looks like hot news).
The old sites that keeps updating and keep getting new links (the authority)
The spam site that won’t be around next month.