What is a PageRank?

June 20, 2012

Google PageRank, the Holy Grail for webmasters, the thing which every website and blog owner want to gnaw on, has eluded many of us. You make a website, you want to generate a loads of traffic and money, first thing you will work on is to increase the PageRank of your website. In this post, we will try to answer the question What is PageRank and how to check the PageRank of your website.

So, what is PageRank? By definition, PageRank is a method (patented by Google) to determine the importance of contents on a webpage indexed by a search engine. Named after Larry Page (one of the two co-founders of Google), it is used by Google to determine page relevance or importance.

Getting into bit of history, it was created in 1998 by Larry Page and Sergey Brin while working in Stanford University as part of their project on developing a search engine.

We all know PagRrank is assigned a value between 0 and 10. How is this value assigned? Well to answer this question, consider the example of 4 pages A,B,C and D. Suppose all of them are assigned values of .25 each.  Now if page B, C and D link to page A, then the PageRank for page A will be like:

PageRank of A = PageRank of B + PageRank of C + PageRank o D = .75

Further, if page B is linked to page D, then PageRank of A will be like:

PageRank of A = PageRank of B/2 + PageRank of C + PageRank o D = .625

What happened is that the value of PageRank due to B has halved as it is now linked to two pages. Thus value of link decreases as it it linked to more and more pages. Or simply:

where L(X) is number of links of page X to other pages. In our case, X is B, C and D.

Didnt understand the math, well hope this picture helps to understand the idea.

One thing to remember, Google search relevance is not entirely based on PageRank. There are other factors also which determine Google’s search result and PageRank is just one of them, but still like wiki said “PageRank continues to provide the basis for all of Google’s web search tools”.

Hope this picture will give you the idea about PageRank of different websites all over world wide web.

Image Courtesy of TechToggle

Checking PageRank:

Below are mentioned some websites and plugins that will help you in determining the PageRank of any website.

1) PRChecker:


2) Google Toolbar


3) Search Status:


Image Courtesy of Hazelnotes