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Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Drop in Google PageRank : Bad links or new algorithm

All went well for our website until one fine day we found to our dismay that our PageRank has dipped from 7 to 5. We pondered on what possibly could go wrong with our site. On querying further on the swings in Google PageRank, I found that many others share the same cup of woes.

Delving deeper into the heart of Google PageRank , I found that many factors play a role in PageRank. For the benefit of folks, I post the three main reasons and how you can insulate from such rude shocks.

Low Page Rank/link popularity:

Link from quality websites to your site can fetch high PageRank. If your site's PageRank depends on one major site link then any changes in that site can adversely effect your page rank.

Solution: Diversify or create multiple links with smaller sites so the loss from one will not effect the PageRank in a major way.

Change in the Search Engine Ranking Algorithm:

Search engines regularly modify the page rank algorithms. Changes to algorithms are done to improve the search capabilities and to remove sites using “black hat” techniques to get ahead in SERP. Google usually makes changes all through the year and other search engines like Yahoo follows bi-yearly pattern.

Solution: One of the accepted way to fight changes in algorithm is to focus your site on your customer needs. Provide quality content and base your website on sound usability principles.

Bad Bad Neighbors, wrong links:

While Google rewards sites with good number outbound links, it can also penalize sites for the wrong choice of bad outbound links. Outbound links to sites practicing unethical SEO techniques can invite penalty or it can result in loss of index with search engines.

Solution: Keep a safe distance with sites low on the rungs of reputation. Tread with caution when you create outbound links. Similar to our social network, check the site's reputation before you collaborate with an unknown site.

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