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There are two sides to search engine optimization (SEO): on-page and off-page optimization. Off-page means getting links from other websites to point back to your site, which strengthens your site's position in search engine results. In this course, author Peter Kent dissects the anatomy of a link, explains how links affect page ranking, and reveals the properties that make an excellent inbound link. The course also evaluates reciprocal linking; link building via press releases, blogs, and articles; and the importance of using quality links that are search-engine friendly.
Let's quickly look at how you can find out the PageRank of a particular page. Probably the easiest way is to install a toolbar into your browser that retrieves the page's PageRank from Google when you load the page. This one of course is the Google Toolbar which is only available for Internet Explorer. You can see that the PageRank button shows a green bar to visually indicate the page's PageRank. Point at the button and this pop up appears providing the PageRank number. Remember, as explained in the previous video, this is the public PageRank number which is not that true secret number.
When you first install the toolbar, you won't see this button. Go into the Options, select the Privacy tab and you'll find the PageRank button here. What if you don't use Internet Explorer? You can still find various add-ons and extensions that will you show PageRank. In fact, there are non-Google PageRank tools for Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome, Safari and Opera. This one is a product called WebRank running in Firefox. You can see the page's PageRank here along with lots of other data related to the page such as the Alexa Rank, the number of pages on the site indexed in Google, Bing and Yahoo!, and so on.
To find these tools, simply go to your browser's Add-ons or Extensions Library and search for the word PageRank. You don't have to install anything though, you can find sites that let you enter a page's URL and they retrieve the PageRank for you. Just Google the term view pagerank and you'll find them. What about PageRank for other search engines? PageRank is a Google term of course, but other major search engines must use a similar method, a way to use incoming links to help rank web pages.
Yahoo! had a system called WebRank, it even provided a toolbar with a WebRank display, but it may not have been quite the same. Yahoo! claimed it was based on what sites people visited. Of course, Yahoo! no longer maintains a search index. It gets search results from Bing. As for Bing, that search engine had something it calls Page Score, but it's a very different thing, it really isn't clear what it is in fact, and Bing seems to have pretty much dropped it. So for the moment, all we're left with is PageRank. Bing isn't providing any equivalent information.
But it really doesn't matter that much. In fact, PageRank isn't something you should be obsessing over anyway. What really counts is how your pages are ranking in the search results for the searches you're interested in. While PageRank is one factor, you can often rank above sites with higher PageRank. If you're not ranking well and your site is well optimized, then you need to create links with good keywords in them from lots of different sites pointing to your web pages. That will help you rank and it will build PageRank at the same time, but it's the ranking that counts.
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