Backlink Myth #1 – Google Page Rank is equal to Search Engine Ranking
People all over the Internet get excited when Google updates its page rank program and they find that they’ve
risen from a PR3 to a PR4 or from PR0 to PR5. There’s also a lot of discussion over page rank in website marketplaces.
Page rank is one of the important facts that sellers share
with website buyers. But is all this fanfare really necessary? What exactly does page rank mean?
There’s a big misconception over what page rank means, especially with respect to search engine rankings. Many
people mistakenly believe that getting a high page rank will automatically mean that their blog or website will be ranked
well in the search engine results.
The truth is that page rank is only a small part of the overall algorithm that determines the search engine results position
of your website. Page rank and search engine results in position are independent of each other. Page rank is a
ranking determined by Google and only used in that search engine. Search engine results positions are across several
different search engines.
Page rank is determined by the number of backlinks that a specific page on your website is receiving. It is not site rank.
Just because your homepage is ranked PR5 it doesn’t mean that the rest of your website will be ranked the same way.
If your home page is ranked a PR 5, the pages that are linked from that homepage will get a bit of the “link juice” as marketers call it, and will have their page rank slightly bumped. That’s why it’s so important to link to quality sites.
The fastest way to screw up your earned page rank is to link off to hundreds of low-quality sites. If you do this, you’ll end
up having your accumulated page rank totally spread out instead of staying in your website where it should be.
It’s possible to have a web page with a high page rank appear below a web page with a low page rank on the
search engine results. It all depends on the quality of content that appears on that lower-page rank website. If you
install SEO for Firefox or another similar tool that shows you the page rank for websites in your search engine results
page, you’ll begin to see this phenomenon play out with website results.
The truth is we don’t know exactly what contributes to search engine ranking. Many people spend a lot of time
trying to guess Google’s algorithm but really this is a pointless quest. We know that page rank is a part of it, but it shouldn’t be your sole focus when you’re trying to increase your search engine ranking.
Does this mean that page rank is totally useless? No. While it’s true that search engines don’t list web pages in order of
page rank, page rank itself is a very helpful tool in other aspects of Internet marketing. Page rank is built up through backlinks and backlinks are a good way to increase your search engine results placement.
In addition, page rank can be like a feather in your cap when it comes to networking. Since a bit of “link juice”
passes on to each page that you link to, having a high page rank is good for trading links and getting advertisers to advertise on your site. Your page rank will also come into play when you are submitting articles to quality article directories.
Quick Tip: Raise your page rank quickly by posting relevant content using popular keywords in your niche. Spammy articles just won’t do! Make sure to refer to other quality websites in your articles and posts and they’ll be more likely to link back to you, sending “link juice” your way and increasing your page rank!
Backlink Myth #2 – Submitting to Hundreds of Free Directories will increase search engine results ranking
Backlinks are an important part of building up your page rank and your search engine results ranking. Many people have taken this advice to mean that they should be building as many backlinks as they can. They falsely assume that it’s more about the number of backlinks than the quantity.
As a result, there are dozens of free directories that have popped up online. They promise that if you register to have your domain name appear in the directory, you’ll be rewarded with an increased search engine page ranking.
These directories have hundreds and thousands of webmasters linked in their directory. They display advertising and hope that they will be rewarded with a nice Adsense check.
Not only do these free directories not pan out well for the directory owners, but they also aren’t very useful for marketers
either. They normally have a very low page rank. Having a backlink from hundreds of PR 0 websites isn’t any more useful than having no backlinks at all.
Since approximately 99% of all backlink directories have no page rank for their categories or sub-domains, there is really
no point in submitting to these directories. They don’t have any “link juice” to pass along to your website.
What’s worse is that if you get too aggressive with your backlinking strategy, you could actually be penalized in the next round of Google page rank updates. Spreading your link all over the ‘net on sites that aren’t relevant to the content of your site is a surefire way to get slapped by Google.
This practice is called link spamming and it’s the opposite of what you want to achieve with your linking strategy. You may luck out and get a PR1 on the next update from mass linking, but more often than not you will get a PR N/A (often notated as PR-), which doesn’t mean a hill of beans to your ranking.
Quick tip: Some niche directories actually serve a purpose besides collecting thousands of links. You can find these
directories with some careful searching. There’s nothing wrong with posting in a directory as long as it is a quality
directory that can offer you some “Google juice.” Your best bet is to find some directories that are relevant to your topic
and submit to only a handful. This will get you the best return on your investment of time and energy.
Backlink Myth #3 – Getting a ton of social networking links is a way to increase your search engine results page rank.
Many marketers swear by making posts to social networking sites like Digg.com, Reddit.com, and numerous others. These sites normally carry a great deal of page rank and authority. When you submit a story (with a link) on these sites, you’ll be displayed on the first page and get a boost in your page rank.
In theory, the more you submit to these sites, the better your website’s ranking. However, in practice, it does not always work out that way. When your link is fresh, it will appear on the first page of the social networking site. However, it doesn’t stay there for long.
In most cases, it is just a matter of hours before your site is bumped to page 2, page 3, and so on. The effects on your blog or website’s search engine ranking are minimal, at best. They don’t stay there long enough to have any real impact, so you could spend all of your time submitting to these sites and still not getting any extra benefit from the process.
There are definitely better ways to spend your link-building time!
A quick tip: You can see a benefit from posting on these sites if you create a post that is interesting, provocative, or controversial. These types of blog posts are articles that are very attractive to bloggers who will want to post about them on their own sites. You’ll get a link from the social networking site and you’ll also get a link back from the other sites on the web that are posting about your article. In this respect, submitting links to social networking sites can be very effective. While you shouldn’t submit every link that you have to these sites, you can get a lot out of creating specific posts that will incite posts by other bloggers.
Backlink Myth #4 – You shouldn’t link to any sites because you will lose any “link juice” that you have.
Many webmasters know a little about “link juice” or pass-through ranking. This is the phenomenon that occurs when a page with a PR 5 links to a lesser PR page. This lesser page will receive a little page rank boost. With enough of these links from PR 5 sites, a website will get its own page rank increased.
If your website is brand new, or you don’t have that much page rank yet, you might think that linking to other websites is a bad thing. You think that by keeping all your links as internal links you’ll have a much better chance at growing your page rank.
While internal links are important, they aren’t the only way that the search engines determine how page rank gets distributed. Your website is not an island! If you don’t link to other websites, the search engines will assume that your website is self-serving and not part of the community of sites in your niche.
In order to prove that you belong, you should link to other websites in your niche area. You shouldn’t just pick these links blindly though. You should choose the websites that you link to very, very carefully. Research the websites thoroughly and make sure that they have established themselves in the niche with quality content and proper web design!
Don’t link to a spammy-looking site. It’s kind of like the old saying “when you sleep with dogs, you wake up with fleas.” Don’t sleep with the “dogs” of the Internet marketing world.
As you learned in the last myth, you should stay away from link farms and other unscrupulous means of linking. You can lose a lot of credibility with your visitors this way, and you can be penalized by the search engines with low results.
You can get a lot from linking to quality sites in your niche. You’ll increase your relevancy in the eyes of the search
engine, and your visitors as well. You should find well-established sites that have quality content.
Quick Tip: Link to the top five or six sites in your niche, and then find two to three who are in a midrange of PR. Make
sure these midrange sites have good content. The thinking behind linking to midrange sites is that they’ll be more likely to link back to you than the other high authority sites. You can quickly build backlinks this way by “making friends” that are slightly above you.
Backlink Myth #5 – Turning 100 domain into one mega domain will help your search engine rankings.
This is often a strategy that marketers make the mistake of using. They think that by building up a bunch of low-ranking sites that they can quickly and easily get them to combine into a big mega-site. All of the ranking information from the 100 sites will combine together to make a super powerhouse website with a ton of search engine ranking. Right? Wrong!
This tactic doesn’t even work in theory. There is no reason to do this and it can get quite expensive. If you are buying .com names, your costs for a large number of sites could run well into the $800 range just for the domains alone! When you factor in the cost of the content, if you are purchasing it, and the time it takes to set up the websites that are a whole lot of work.
On top of that, the strategy doesn’t work that well at all. Your spammy sites aren’t going to add a whole lot of oomph to your main site, and you’ll end up costing yourself a lot of time and money by attempting this method.
A quick tip: A far better way to go is to create a single quality website and work on link-building strategies that will build up that site’s ranking in the search results. Don’t waste your time with a “cheater” method like this that doesn’t even work that well.
Backlink Myth #6 – You should wait to complete certain page building or link building tasks until Google has made a page rank update.
Many marketers foolishly play the waiting game. They put off building sister sites and supporting domains until Google
has made its update to the page rank system. The only problem with this theory is that page rank happens in real-time. Since Google doesn’t wait…neither should you!
People often get confused because Google makes a quarterly update of their toolbar PR reader. Every three months new
PR scores show up for sites and everyone gets excited over their process. The truth is the Google update is only an update of the toolbar. The page rank of websites is continuously being updated throughout that time period. You don’t have to wait for the toolbar to be updated to get some work on your website done.
A quick tip: Proceed with your website updates and expansion plans as you would normally. Besides, if you grow another website or two while you would have been waiting you’ll be a lot further along than you would be.