My Marketing Thing - SEO Tips Part 4: Inbound Links and PageRank
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SEO Tips Part 4: Inbound Links and PageRank
You already know it. Where you sit on Google can determine the success of your business. But do you know how to ramp up ranking, given the recent Google changes? Sage SEO authority John Hacking of Search Tempo is giving us his pearls of wisdom. So settle on your tatami mat, because today you are going to be enlightened on inbound links.
John, what are inbound links and are they still in Google’s spotlight?
Inbound links are also known as backlinks or incoming links. They are links from pages on external sites linking back to your site. And, yes. Inbound links are still important for search engine ranking. When talking about the ‘authority’ of a page, we are referring to how well regarded it is by Google. Notwithstanding Google’s Panda update, the authority of the page your link is on helps. There are high authority domains as well. But it is not just about the authority of the site. It is also about the authority of the actual page.
What has PageRank got to do with inbound links? MMT note: PageRank is a link analysis algorithm used by the Google, named after a guy called Larry Page…just to confuse everyone further. Google uses PageRank to determine the importance of a web page. PageRank works on a scale from 1-10 (10 being very good), focusing on individual pages, as well as domain names and sites. It’s nearly impossible to get a PageRank of 10. PageRank ties in directly with the quality of inbound links you have. But its still only one of many factors that decides your ranking in the end. Having your link on one of these authority pages (page with a high PageRank) is helpful for your PageRank and your SEO in general. It’s like a vote of confidence from someone that Google already trusts.
What about those linking companies I get spam emails from? Beware of link farming and offers of thousands of backlinks for a few dollars. This is often automated linking on sites without taking into account the relevance of the link to the site. Google’s coming down hard on link farming now, so make sure you don’t link back to them.
Is YouTube still important for inbound linking? I only use YouTube for inbound links – that is, to have your website address on a YouTube page. YouTube is a PR (PageRank) 9 – it is a high authority domain. Not so much because it is owned by Google. But simply because it is the second largest search engine that we have. Vimeo, for example, has less authority than YouTube. MMT note: John showed me hisSearch Tempo video on YouTube and said:
I don’t care if anyone sees this or not. But it is a PR2 page on a PR 9 domain with a link back to my home page. So that helps with my SEO.
How do you find out a page’s PageRank? There are plenty of free Google PageRank plug-ins for Chrome and other browsers.
Your BIG opportunity: Ask the SEO expert
What do you want to know about SEO?
Rima asked: "What if I want to change my domain name? How do I minimise ranking drop?"
You need to do what’s called a "301 redirect" from your old pages to your new pages. You web designer may be able to help with this. Once the redirects are done it takes about 2 weeks for your rankings to return.
Ben asked: "Do I lose ranking if I change my host?"
That does happen sometimes. If your host is very slow, or if Google is blocked from that host for some reason, your rankings may go down. With hosting, you tend to get what you pay for. These days I only use Hostgator or Crucial Paradigm.
What's your question? John will answer it at the end of the next SEO Tips post. Irresistible, right?
SEO Tips Part 5, John gives us the inside scoop on how Google products and social media affect your Google ranking – or not. Stay tuned!