Perception is reality, why Google Page Rank matters

When it comes to Google’s Page Rank, a typical blogger goes through the following progression of thought.

What’s Page Rank?

How do I improve my Page Rank?

Page Rank is irrelevant.

I think step three is too clever by half. Sure, from a purely Googlerific point of view, the Live Page Rank indicator available for Firefox or included in the Google Toolbar isn’t a lead pipe lock when it comes to where you will rank for a particular search term. On top of that, blogging primarily for SEO isn’t the most effective endeavor either. But Page Rank still matters, and as more and more potential readers become quasi-page rank literate, it matters more than most SEO experts ever bothered to consider.

Fair or not, blogs are often judged by their Page Rank. You can either try to convince your readers why it doesn’t, or leverage it to your advantage.

Forget about blogs for a minute. I cut my teeth in this industry by earning and asking for referrals. As a loan officer, my referral base was real estate agents. An agent’s referral base largely comes from their sphere of influence. All referrals work basically the same. The best way to grow your sphere of influence is to help your sphere members grow their own sphere.

So, if a real estate agent can help their dry cleaner by promoting their business on a hyper-local real estate blog, the dry cleaner will be more likely to recommend you to their own client base. This is why Page Rank matters more than ever. Sure, directly marketing to consumers is the primary reason to blog, but I’m not too Web2.0-proud to accept a good ole’ fashioned word of mouth referral.

Your blog is a very powerful viral marketing tool. There will be times when some link love will be the most effective way to win the hearts of your potential referral base. Many of them have yet to come to the stage three assumption that Page Rank doesn’t matter. Goggle made you beautiful, there’s no sense in being modest here.

0 thoughts on “Perception is reality, why Google Page Rank matters

  1. Jay Thompson

    Somehow it feels … I dunno, wrong to leverage my PR to get local WOM referrals.

    On the other hand, the effort to get it (however it was gotten) was not insignificant. So why not reap some benefit from it?

  2. john harper

    The forms may change but networking is still networking and business is business.

    I have a friend with a temporary fencing and portable toilet rental business in the East Bay. I wrote him up twice on our blog because he is a friend and – you never know who might be a potential client. Maybe some construction foreman moving to the area.

    If you Google – san francisco portable toilets or san francisco temporary fencing – you see one of the posts.

    So far these posts have generated several thousand dollars worth of business for my friend’s business.

    Isn’t that the nature of networking?

  3. Tom

    Most of us who have high traffic sites with a low “Toolbar Page Rank” are being penalized because we sold links at some stage or did reviews.

    I know Google penalized my site from a 5 to a 3. However, only the external page rank that you see on the tool bar was affected. The traffic and keyword ranking was never affected and actually improved during this period.

    Google just did not like me monetizing my site that were against their wishes, which is their perogative. By lowering my Toolbar Page Rank they limited my earning potential through those avenues.

  4. Todd Carpenter

    Yea Tom, I wouldn’t recommend selling links. But writing stories about sites or businesses that are related to your own blog, without any quid pro quo isn’t likely to land anyone in the Google penalty box.

  5. Jayson

    You mentioned that new people are beginning to learn what PageRank is and because of that I think it’s still really important. A few years down the road, when they reach the “PageRank is irrelevant” thought then it won’t be as important.

    In addition, my personal belief is that PageRank is important and that it does a lot for a website when you look at the entire picture (influence, authority, trust etc..).

    As long as PageRank is used as part of the Google algo – I’ll work to improve PR – we might not have much PR now but with a lot of work we’ll get there!

  6. Stephen Winters

    I have tried different approaches, wrote articles for SEO, wrote articles for the readers. I watched my website climb up and down on google mountain.
    funny, when I decided to stop concentrating on the PR and placement and just write and promote about real estate, I appeared on the first page for my aimed keywords. Should bloggers approach it this way?

  7. Todd Carpenter

    Stephen. That’s what I did. But I try to be careful limit my posts to, “Here’s what I’d do”. The point is, I don’t know for sure. I don’t think anyone else does either.


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