Is PageRank Affected by Google Links?

Matt Cutts Talks About the Topic

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In the latest Google Webmaster Central YouTube Channel upload from Matt Cutts, he talks about whether or not Google places value on its own links with regards to Pagerank. Cutts took on the following user question:

Question: Does Google value its own links for PR/Linkjuice? Google Bookmarks, Google Profiles, etc. Reason – Google links never appear in Webmaster Tools.

Have you had similar questions about Google sites and PageRank? Comment.

Google has plenty of products that spawn links, so the question is certainly a legitimate one. You’ve got Google Bookmarks, Google Profiles, Google Knol, YouTube, Blogger, and many others. Matt doesn’t go through each product and specify Google’s practices for each one, but he gives a general explanation about Google’s policies regarding links from Google-owned sites.

Cutts says he doesn’t know about whether Google links never appear in Webmaster Tools, but in general, people hold Google to a very high standard. He gives the example that if Google delivers search results that aren’t blocked by robots.txt, people find out about it and draw a lot of attention to it, whether that be by blogging or forums, or whatever.

"We try to be relatively careful," says Cutts.

With search results, Google tries to make sure they’re properties aren’t too spammable, and if they are worried that something might be potentially abused, they will often use a nofollow attribute.

Cutts says with Google Knol for example, most of the external links started out as nofollow, but then over time as they learned which Knol authors were more trustworthy, they lifted the nofollow on those Knol authors.

Google Knol

Google Knol has not received a whole lot of media attention since it was launched in late December 2007. It is a site where users can write articles on any number of topics that they feel they are experts on. An article is referred to as a knol, which Google defines as "a unit of knowledge."

"Sometimes we do flow pagerank, but we try to be relatively careful because we’re mindful of the people who do try to abuse it," he says.

The video is below in case you’d rather hear it straight from Matt’s mouth, but I think I’ve pretty much covered what he says in the above text. That said, it is only a minute and a half, so it won’t take too long to watch. 

Google has a lot of properties, and this might not answer everybody’s questions on the subject, but I would bet that the trust factor mentioned with regards to Google Knol, could probably be applied to other products.

Did you find Matt’s response to the question useful? Share your thoughts.

Is PageRank Affected by Google Links?
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  • http://www.spec-india.com Venkatesh Pai

    Hi Chris Crum,

    Thanks for sharring this info. i was also bit confuse now made so many doubts clear.

  • http://www.lexolutionit.com Maneet Puri

    This was indeed useful! I did not know about the Knol part. I guess this is a very vague topic and Google itself doesnt have an automated stand on it (as in case of Knol). So, its best to carry out the regular optimization techniques of offering unique and relevant content on regular basis as the main ploy to network online.

  • http://www.controldatainc.com collection agencies

    Ranking with Google is almost a black art, information like this is great in that it helps us discover more about it

  • http://www.specialist-gifts.com Decorative living

    I must say that google ranking system is very complicated I think your article was very good. Google loves fresh information

  • http://pitercentre.blogspot.com piter m. silitonga,s.si

    Pagerank is full of mistery, why..I have 2 blogs..the 1st blog in 3/10 PR and another is 2/10..But I don’t know why… both of them sudden drop to N/A and after a week the PR back to 3/10 and 2/10. But…after 3 days drop to N/A untill now…….Confuse…

    • http://mojezeh-quran.blogfa.com/ siroos mojallali

      my pagerank was 2 but 1 now why?

  • http://www.rentbrandon.com Brandon Homes for Rent

    It is always interesting how when explaining things, Matt also seems to always be actually side-stepping the real question. In other words, he didn’t give any real answers. The problem, of course for the little guy trying to compete with the big boys, a great link from a good site is a little bit harder to come by, so the current setup Google has favors those with more money. Failing to share information openly makes this gap wider… thanks for the info in this article, but I must admit, Google is starting to sound more and more like Microsoft every year.

  • http://www.melmenzies.co.uk Mel Menzies

    I found this article very helpful and useful. Like Maneet Puri, I knew very little about Knol. So although I’ve completed my Google Profile, I shall definitely now also use this facility.

    My website dropped from 4/10 to 3/10 and despite blogging my socks off, I’ve been unable to get it back up again. Which is frustrating! Especially as my Twitter ranking is 9/10.

    Thanks for all the helpful info you give us. Keep up the good work! 😉

  • Guest

    “The video is below in case you’d rather hear it straight from Matt’s mouth, but I think I’ve pretty much covered what he says…”

    Yes. As usual, he doesn’t say anything.
    The question was: “Is PageRank Affected by Google Links?”

    After reading tis article and watching the video, I still don’t know theanswer.

    • http://www.lancahireroseblinds.co.uk Guest

      I think Matt is dodging the issue too. We all know page rank means a more trusted site, yet links make better page rank. So why not just come out and say it

      • Kate

        Matt Cutts is like Google’s Oracle at Delphi. Or Barack Obama. Every statement he utters can be interpreted in at least six different ways and is designed to make you think he’s saying something when in reality he isn’t. His pronouncements are like a Rorschach inkblots: you look at them and you think you know what they represent; but everybody sees something different.
        Dodging the issue is what the G-Men do best; and Matt Cutts lives in Dodge city.

        • http://www.wte-ltd.co.uk Septic tank problems and solutions

          I find that Matt Cutts rarely answers questions positively and one is usually left no wiser than before.
          He is a master at using 1000 words to say nothing constructive.

  • http://www.marketingloudly.com Online Marketing Blog

    “Cutts says he doesn’t know about whether Google links never appear in Webmaster Tools”.

    I find this very hard to believe. Geez Matt, if you cant comment on something, just say “I cant comment on that”.. man..

  • http://www.vicktrade.com fania

    Thank you for your information.
    I always think high pagerank websites means good quality one, so it will be easier to be searched.

  • http://becometaller.net/becometaller Relian

    Like others have said already, he really didn`t say _anything_ that`ll make us any wiser when it comes to pagerank. Dodging the question like Neo dodges bullets, it`s so irritating to watch.

  • http://greatwebstrategies.com Great Web Strategies

    to mention that:

    “Sometimes we do flow pagerank, but we try to be relatively careful because we’re mindful of the people who do try to abuse it,” he says.

    It’s gotta be hard for him to walk that line of how much information to give out, esp being in the division to fight spam…giving this insight could open up a flood of knol’s being created.

  • http://www.sixthsensemarketing.com.au/ Brad

    Didn’t not know about the lifting of the nofollow tag on Knol when a user is considered a trusted source of information, interesting!

  • http://www.hdvideoconvertermac.com/ HD Video Converter for Mac

    The page rank is so important that we all want to improve the rank of our website, but others may be difficult to do this.

  • http://jaiganeshv.com J

    “lifted the no-follow on knol authors” thats a great news really..

  • http://www.hammocksaustralia.com.au Mitch

    Cool, good article and interesting topic. I wondered about that stuff also, so was glad to find this, thanks for posting. I didn’t know about google knols though so I’m going to check them out now.

  • http://www.neotericuk.co.uk/seo-london.php Seo London

    Page rank still matter it tells about the credibility of website to whom your site is linked . Trust really matter a lot as Matt say “lifted the no-follow on knol authors”

  • http://www.impactmedialtd.co.uk Adrian | Impact Media

    …and no, PR isn’t PageRank.

    It’s great that he keeps popping up and sharing snippets of information but let’s not get carried with it. He provides good PR for Google but you’re more likely to hear Gordon Brown say something definite that Matt.

    • Kate

      Oh thank you Mr Cutts, for those titbits of useless information.. grovel, grovel…

      While the Google Beast feasts, the people who provide all the content for the web – the website owners – gather below the table hoping for a few crumbs.

      Who is sucking up most of the revenue on the web?
      Google. It has every market cornered. It competes, directly and indirectly, with every website and dominates the online marketplace, but it can only get away with this by presenting itself as a benign entity, eager to help everyone and “improve” the web. It sets out the rules that everyone has to follow, but it does not apply these rules to itself. Selling listings or links? You’re banned by Google (the company that has a monopoly on selling listings and links)!

      Google? They should have called it Gobble.

      What Google needs urgently is a strong dose of healthy competition.
      And, unfortunately, I can’t see that being provided by the likes of Bing.

  • http://www.discountwebdesign.co.uk website design

    thanks for sharing these info. cool.

  • http://www.ssrichardmontgomery.com ron

    There should be NO no-follow attribute this only stops legitimate sites.
    Spammer sites know all the ways around it so get through anyway.

  • http://www.myfri3nd.com myFri3nd

    Thank you for sharing

  • http://www.zygella.com Joe

    Google page rank is something that I have recently mentioned in a form.

    Great article anyway.

  • http://www.bikeshopcastlehill.com.au Home Solar Power Systems

    Great article. It is true that page ranking is very important to make our website popular. I am wondering why Google give least important to its own links for PR/Linkjuice. Perhaps this is the reason why most of the people does not know more about Google Knol.

  • http://www.snerdey.com Snerdey

    Blogs are an amazing tool to use to add remote content to a website, featured products whatever the case my be. It’s perfect for clients that don’t want to edit a website but need to be able to updated it without special software etc.. on the fly content if you will.

    Something else that I’ll add to this…

    If you search my nic name ( snerdey ) you will see my site, but also blogspot.com and twitter — the combination of just these too services are boosting my site up and I just joined twitter a couple of months ago or so.

    As for the blog, I’ve been using that for years.. LOVE IT!

    Good luck everyone.

    Follow me on Twitter!

  • http://www.dvd-photo-slideshow.com Jonna

    I have read your information.I quite agree with your viewpoint.I have a website,but I do know how to build a blog for my webiste traffic.My website is PR7 but less traffic.Can you tell me how can I make a good blog so that I can get more traffic to my website.My PR7 website http://www.dvd-photo-slideshow.com PR7 Maybe you can help me

  • http://perigitua.com perigitua

    thx u for your info
    i think the google pagerank is big mistery for me

  • http://www.universitieshandbook.com/ Swiss Universities Handbook

    Thanks for sharing the information’s

  • http://www.ghostsandmore.info Jason

    Thanks for the article. I did wonder about how important links from blogger/bookmarks etc. were and if it was worth setting up extra blogs on other subjects to occasionally advertise my main one. Now I know :)

    Many thanks and keep up the good work!


  • http://www.mayanlegacy.com.au Alicia

    Always good to learn something new to help advance in the rankings. It is one of the most competitive markets out there. Thanks for this report and look forward to hearing mor info.

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