Pagerank is a word that if whispered near a webmaster forum will have young webmasters quite literally wetting their pants. It is amazing that one little green bar can hold so much importance for some people.
But unfortunately, Pagerank discussion is now spreading through blogs and forums like a plague, and I think it is about time people started worrying more about their business, than a little green bar.
Why Are People Fascinated with Pagerank?
In a word… “laziness”. For years now, Pagerank has acted as a summary of a site’s strength. By looking at the green bar and using an idiot proof scale of 1 to 10, it has attracted idiots, and people who can’t be bothered to make informed decisions of their own.
If used as a VERY rough guide/spam prevention gimmick, then Pagerank has/had it’s place in the industry, but as soon as you start treating it as anything more than this, it becomes an issue. Throw text link ads into the mix, and you have a recipe for disaster.
My Pagerank Plague Metaphor
Here is how I see the Pagerank confusion… if a car is your website, and your speed is your success, then the Pagerank is the speedometer. It shows you how fast you are going, and gives an overview of how powerful the car is etc…
However, the webmaster industry see it like this:
The speedometer is what makes the car move.
Not the engine, the wheels etc… it is all about the speedometer.
According to their theories, if you remove the speedometer, then the car will stop. Whereas the reality is that the car will continue to run perfectly, but it won’t be as easy to measure it’s speed.
Luckily we can measure the speed in other ways, they may not be as idiot proof, but looking at web traffic, search engine ranks, revenue figures etc… are all far more accurate ways of measuring a site’s success/speed.
The bad news for all the webmasters is they will actually have to do some work before they go around judging people’s sites based on what the green bar whispers in their ear.
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