By Lucas Chan

Changes to PageRank?

By Lucas Chan

It seems that Google has recently changed their PageRank algorithm. A number of sites have experienced a significant drop in PageRank as a result.

  • Boing Boing: Was 9, now 7.
  • Engadget: Was 7, now 5.
  • Forbes.com: Was 7, now 5.
  • New Scientist: Was 7, now 5.

Early reports suggest that sites which sell or exchange links are most affected. However sites that don’t fall into this category have also experienced a drop in PageRank.

This is a potentially devastating change for sites that rely heavily on search traffic. Post here if this affects you, or if you have any further insight.

  • 2MHost.com

    http://www.mootools.net dropped from PR7 to PR6 ..
    http://www.smashingmagazine.com from PR6 to PR4
    script.aculo.us from PR7 to PR4

    websites obviously have ‘Sponsored Links’

  • The last sentence is a little off the mark – PageRank has nothing to do with the amount of search engine traffic a site recieves. Many have been reporting these drops in PR, but I don’t think anyone has really seen much drop in their Google referrals.

  • Mitch Wahkhan

    It must be a new expansion. Google just raised the level cap!

    They also nerfed Bards, those bastards!

  • Ryan

    Yep one of my sites dropped from 3 to 0 last week, but then again it doesn’t get used much anymore.

  • Coward

    Mwahahaha! Bards needed nerfing. Their IWIN button makes my PvP lifestyle the suxxor.

  • skillipedia

    Sponsored links existed way before Google stepped in. I am sure Google shot themselves in the foot: other search engines such as MSN will have to find a new and fair idea to rate web sites and they are off.

  • Yes, changes all over the landscape as far as my sites are concerned.
    Interesting to see PR go down for some of them while traffic went up.

  • zuneone

    I suppose it is a good thing and can help level out the playing field for the little people.

  • ismedia

    One of our main sites went from a PR6 to a PR4, but I haven’t seen any traffic decrease as a result (yet). My understanding is that the toolbar PR is quite different from the internal PageRank that is assessed at the Googleplex, so this might be nothing more than a slap on the wrist for link sellers. On the other hand, you can bet I will be checking my stats closely for the next couple of months for a drop in traffic.

  • Man, I haven’t looked at pagerank since 2005. But now that I’ve been reminded of this funny little thing, my site is still at PR7. Also, I double-checked the sites you mentioned, Engadget and Forbes are still at their original 7. Remember this stuff fluctuates all the time, so it’s silly to be constantly watching it.

    @skillipedia: how exactly did Google shoot themselves in the foot?

  • notherGoogler

    Dropped from an 8 to a 7, a client of mine I link to dropped from a 7 to a 4.

  • jplancaster

    We have sites that dropped in PR, most likely due to the site’s PR that point to us since we don’t have any outbound links at all. However, the traffic is up this week over last few month’s average. The little PR bar hasn’t changed in over a year so I almost forgot to care about it until now. I won’t get caught up in focusing on it as I used to in the early days…

  • I have had both my sites increase dramatically in pagerank.

    One site increased from PR 0 to 5 and another PR 1 to 5. I have a feeling this won’t be a permanent fixture however.

  • #hoffster : same like me, some of my web get increased PR from 0 to 3 and from 0 to 2. why do you have feeling that’s not permanent ?
    i think Google just updated their PR on their server

  • Some of the Sites on Tour and Tavel, and Digital Content were got effected.
    Like one of the best iphone site in India, which lost a lot on its traffic.

  • Yeah, EquityGroups.com has seen a drop in PR. I don’t really know the cause for it though.

  • One of our sites dropped from PR5 to PR3 despite having solid content, good if not better traffic and its a strong community website, not a links directory. I just don’t get it.

  • 007magnum

    Not sure about leveling out playing field for little people when little people were affected also. I’m definitely ‘little people’ and what little money I was managing to make Google just fixed it so I’ll be making nothing by dropping the page rank for my sites inexplicably. I do sell ads from text link ads. I can’t see why I should be penalized for that. Google is what it is because it uses its properties as money making vehicles, but when we try to monetize our websites so we can pay our bills we get penalized? If that’s what’s going on I would say the little people need to start fighting back. Google shouldn’t have the power to make or break you like that.

  • Anonymous

    Who cares about what number they display? How is the traffic? Did it dip or drop off the face of the earth? I asked a prominent tech blog owner about his PR7 drop to PR3 and he said he never noticed any change in traffic at all.

  • john stuart

    we have gotten a higher pr

  • SEOzer

    The whole situation surounding Page Rank is simple. Google has the right to do what ever they want, it’s their search engine and you can decide whether or not to abide by their rules. All you need to do is no follow your paid adds and state the fact you huge banner add is sponsered with text above or next to the add. Look at Adsense and how the adds by Google is displayed. Model that Google shows you how to display a paid add.

    If you fear loosing Page Rank you are either a directory or someone that still believes in reciprical links. You cannot honestly know SEO and be affraid of Page Rank. Page Rank is a small factor that is quickly diluted if the site has strong topical links and a good looking link profile.

    There is nothing to fear about Page Rank. I’ve read countless articles to try and understand why a little green bar indicating a number was so important to many and I came up with a theory. Google has not indexed the entire internet. They cannot control all the sites out there, but they do have something going for them. Fear. They have developed a need for their search engine and without it we are nothing. When real estate websites recieved a fat penalty they went after the big hosting companies first. Why? I’ll tell you because they cannot police everything. I still see recipricals from Real Estate agents that still work. They are doing the same thing again to paid sites. Take away their PR and they will think twice before they pass link equity. Some major directories are not even within their index. Why? You hit the big guns the rest will follow.

    Google has done nothing but scared you into believing a little green bar with a number is your buisness and without it you make no money. It’s not. Listen to what Google tells you and move on. I have been in this game for many years and have seen people get bent out of shape over what a search engine is doing. Build something search worthy and read SEO blogs. Seobook.com is my favorite he’ll lead you into the right direction.

  • humanknowledge

    thanks seozer for that word of encouragement… i wish it were all true..

  • Kane

    fuck google, they want to kill off all competition so that they remain profitable, thats why they killed off text link ads and now going to payperpost and soon reviewme!!! They dont have rights to dictate what service we use!!! We shld sue them for anti-monopolization just like Microsoft got sued and lost the case!!

  • ebuytool

    One of my heavily promoted <b>web directory </b>, was up from 0 to 4 for some days. It went down to zero again (could be because i changed the hosting provider). I spent more than $ 500.00 to promote that link directory. Blog posting, directory posting and bought paid listing from higher PR sites… nothing helped.

    Another site which was relatively new (4 months old) jumped from 0-3, some data center event rank it as 4. I used 50 web directories and 50 social book marking sites to promote. Also obtained 3 organic home page link from similar sites.

    Does any one crack the Page Rank algorithm yet?

  • ebuytool

    I am not sure whether Page Rank affects the Traffic or not.
    From my observation, there is an significant drop in the adsense eCPM.

  • Chase

    This change in the Page Rank has effected me tremendously. My company website had a page rank of 4 before getting hit by the change. Now i’m down to a 2 and have noticed a big change in the organic traffic I receive to my website. I must say this does not make me very happy.

    Evolve – Utah Web Development

  • I haven’t seen a drop or increase in PageRank, but it does seem as if more of my internal pages have picked up PageRank.

  • Ed

    My betting blog doesn’t have any PR even though I get plenty amount of backlinks. The main reason TLA code. I am wondering how much time it need to update PR if I remove TLA code?

  • Hello Luca’s,

    Thank you for your post and sharing your knowledge. The Google seems to be implementing lots of new things, For instance, The alogrithms, I guess are either being changed on daily basis, and/or they are looking to fine tune the serps, in order to bring the quality sites above in the serps.

    I had been focusing on the – – – and as google has been in updating process two days back, I ranked on the Top #10 Companies for these keywords (Before this up-date I was in the first #20 serps, or #30 serps. It is sad, that I did not brought myself or the Update was not helpful for my specific keyword or and I am still not there in the first 400 results. But I am for sure, the quality work, will bring the results as desired. In this regard, I might need you guys support, ,hints and tips I guess in order to perform well.

    I feel. The Google continues efforts are bringing the legal people ahead in the race….What do you think on it? I have planned to leave a message for Matt (The Google Blogger), and I will still look in the situation to get in touch in order to follows his knowledge.

    Thanks again for the post. The implements seems to be for all right reasons!

  • kisss


    you know how to do quality designing work if you do know the visit
    Silicon Web Solutions

    hope you will enjoy with it

  • shareitall

    Google’s moves are always so interesting. During latest PR update, one of my own sites went from 0 to 2, and a site I bought a link from went from 5 to 3.

    How do they know? Automated tools, that keep getting smarter and smarter!

    entrepreneur blog

  • Internet Marketing Services

    How often does PR get updated by Google? Im new here and am learning more everyday!

  • Anonymous

    I have read somewhere else that Google PR is going to be more strongly influenced by page integrity. They want to move away from rewarding massive linking to looking at the value and message of the content of sites.

  • Anonymous

    By the way my site got dinged like 3 PR points. Minnesota web design

  • My site stayed the same. Does that mean I’m doing something right? ;)

Get the latest in Entrepreneur, once a week, for free.