After launching your new blog it’s easy to get obsessed with page ranking and your place in search engines. Here I’m going to talk about page ranking.
Your readers will not care about your page ranking; but advertisers might use this to meaure the worthiness of your site and other bloggers might if they are thinking about linking to your blog.
So what is Page Rank ?
I’m used to writing in Plain English for work purposes so I’m going to keep this simple. Google uses PageRank as indication of how popular your site is. They use a complex algorithm to work this out. It’s basically: the more links you have coming into your site influenced by how powerful the site is that is linking to you. It’s a bit like a popularity contest.
For instance: If you also happen to write TV reviews and I linked to your blog, it would not increase your rank with Google as I have a PageRank of 0 right now. If however, TV.com (PageRank of 8) or Huffington Post (PageRank of 7) were to link to your blog, it would definitely elevate your status. Of course you would need more than those two links as lots of links tell Google you are also important.
Google says: “Google search works because it relies on the millions of individuals posting links on websites to help determine which other sites offer content of value”.
Before you run off to swap links you should understand that Google frowns on link farms (sites created just to provide links) and rapid link building. You don’t need a page rank to get listed in search engines. You need to make sure search engines are crawling your site. This is why you don’t need to worry about PageRanking right now. Let your links grow naturally, don’t force them.
Alexa vs Google
Alexa and Google are different in what they measure and how. PageRank gives an indication of how popular a website is in terms of reputation and Alexa gives an estimate of how much traffic a website is getting daily.
Alexa is a web directory that provides free traffic metrics, search analytics and demographics amongst other things. Unlike Google’s PageRank that takes time to measure, Alexa’s stats are updated more quickly. You can add an Alexa Toolbar to your browser to check the ranking of other sites but, don’t get obsessed with this unless you are looking for high quality backlinks. Alexa data is skewed as it relies on readers downloading the toolbar. A bit like the pesky Nielsen ratings used to measure TV show popularity.
To sum up: You should grow your readership, link to quality content on sites you like and hopefully they will provide a relevant link back and therefore more traffic.
It is more important to worry about whether your content is optimised for search engines (SEO) rather than page ranking when you first start out. SEO will be covered in another post.