How Important is Google PageRank in 2010?

Mar 12, 2010 • 8:10 am | comments (16) by | Filed Under Google Search Engine Optimization

Every year or so, the Google PageRank debate lives on. Some people say Google PageRank is the number one important attribute to have a page rank well in Google. Some say PageRank is worthless and should be completely ignored. Others take a middle ground. SEO's opinion on the topic changes from year to year - even mine.

A WebmasterWorld thread has renewed discussion on the topic. So I thought it would be a good time to run a poll and see how important you all feel PageRank is nowadays. Here is the poll.

Now that you have taken the poll, I want to share some recent Google chatter on PageRank.

A couple weeks ago at SMX West Google's Director of Research, Peter Norvig told Danny Sullivan and Chris Sherman that PageRank is overhyped. Here is an abstract from Search Engine Land's coverage of the event:

One thing that I think is still overhyped is PageRank. People think, yeah, you do this computation on the web graph and then you just order all the pages by that [PageRank]. Yes, that computation is important but it’s just one of many things. And people say, “Oh, well you’re stuck if you don’t have that.” We never felt that way. We never felt that it was such a big factor. It’s got the catchy name and the name recognition, but we’ve always looked at all the available data….

There is this confusion that there’s this one component that’s called PageRank, but the whole thing [Google's algorithm] has [also] been called that. That was a mistake. We need some better branding.

There is no doubt that Googlers involved with webmasters want to remove the PageRank values from the toolbar. In fact, PageRank was removed from Webmaster Tools last year after concern of PageRank became overwhelming for many. Since before 2007 Google wanted to remove PageRank from the toolbar. In fact, then Matt Cutts personally wanted it gone, but I guess he failed? And my new favorite Googler, Tomer Honen tweeted, "And that's why I don't use Twitter that often - only 140 characters... Get over PageRank!"

As you can see, I did not make a distinction here between real PageRank and Toolbar PageRank.

So what do you think? Take the poll and feel free to comment.

Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.

Update: The poll results can be found over here.

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