PageRank Distribution from Home Page

From what I’ve been able to read, PageRank is distributed evenly to all links on a page. Let’s say my home page links look like this:

  • Home
  • Main Category 1
  • Main Category 2
  • Main Category 3
  • About Us
  • Contact
  • Disclaimer
  • Terms of Service
  • Privacy Policy
  1. Would pages other than the Home page lose juice because the Home page has a link to itself?
  2. If all of the pages except my Category pages are ‘leafs’ (don’t go anywhere), isn’t having a link to them from the home page a bad idea from a Page Rank perspective (especially if I’m not trying to rank for them)? Should I do this differently if I want all of the juice to go to my “Category” pages?

No, the home page won’t “lose juice” because it links to itself. On the other hand, it’s not a good user interface. Have you ever clicked on a link that just re-loads the same page? You probably found it annoying, and your visitors will too. It will only take you a moment to remove the home page link from the home page.

As for your other questions, I think you are worrying about it too much. Just leave things as they are.

Mike

[font=calibri]For a start … welcome to the 21st century … please leave your worries about PageRank at the door, you don’t need them any more …

Yes, PageRank is a factor in Google’s ranking algorithm … but it’s a tiny factor, not much above what kind of cereal you had for breakfast today. Worrying too much about the minute details of how PR is passed between pages is almost certainly a waste of time and won’t make any difference to your position in the rankings.

In terms of whether it’s worth linking to pages on your own site … yes, it is. Google is well aware of the difference between a privacy policy and meaty content, and is perfectly capable of distinguishing between them and prioritising them appropriately. As a general rule, you want to give Google free rein to explore as much of your site as you reasonably can, and if your site architecture and navigation is set up properly then you will be fine, because Google will understand how all the pages fit together and will direct visitors to the most appropriate pages.

As Mikl says, having a link to the current page is unhelpful, because it will confuse people (and this is a much bigger problem than any PR leakage). If your system doesn’t allow you to easily remove that link, a fairly effective hack is to make links to the current page not look like links, remove the ‘hand’ icon and formatting etc.[/font]

I’m really referring to the home page link in my banner logo, but point is noted.