Though the original patent for Google’s PageRank algorithm expired in 2019, it does not mean that it is no longer important. Indeed, PageRank was the original idea behind Google and still holds a premium position.
It is noteworthy that the original algorithm used backlinks (citation), as a quality metric to rank webpages in its search results. And Google still uses backlinks for the same purpose.
However, there have been a lot of modifications to this algorithm.
In this article, we will discuss the factors that affect a webpage’s rank in SERPs. And notably, all 4 of these factors concern links or backlinks only.
The first and the primary factor that improves link building is the text or the phrase used to hyperlink a webpage. These texts or phrases are known as anchor texts, and can also be a URL.
The anchor text gives a crucial idea about what could be on a target page. Industry experts offering link building service at OutreachMonks explain that anchor text makes use of keywords, and helps create a diverse pool of keywords that a page could rank for. According to Google’s original PageRank algorithm, “anchor text gives a more precise idea about what could be found on a linked page”.
As such there can be several reasons that may improve or reduce the click worthiness of a link. For example, if a link is placed at the footer, it is very unlikely to be clicked. Likewise, ‘Terms of Service’, which could be the anchor for a page, is also very unlikely to receive a click.
On the other hand, making a link seem like a click-bait may have adverse effects on the rankings of a webpage. This includes, over usage of an anchor text or stuffed links. Google suggests, a link should be naturally intriguing to the user and seek a click.
Another factor that largely affects the prominence of the webpage in SERPs is the number of no-follow links it has. This concerns both inbound and outbound links.
In 2009, when Matt Cutts confirmed that no-follow links would no longer stop search engines from following a link, the idea about using the attribute changed entirely. As this backlinks guide suggests, no-follow links do not pass on any PageRank or link juice, but they still matter. In a number of cases, a careful balance between no-follow links and do-follow links is known to help with improving search engine rankings.
No matter what, internal links are a great tool for strengthening a website’s SEO. For instance, the pages that have not been cited from any third-party domain can gain authority with the help of internal links.
Besides, Google loves links, and the more interconnected a website’s pages are, the better.
Though the original PageRank is no longer patented, it can still be witnessed in its modified form. Only the outlook of the core PageRank algorithm has been changed. It now focuses more on quality rather than just quantity. So, rather than building backlinks blindly, what’s needed is careful placement of links that can drive traffic, authority, and also improve SERP rankings.