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One of the common misconceptions about PageRank is that it identifies where your website appears in the SERPs (Search Engine Result Pages). The other most common misconception is that PageRank is Google’s opinion of the quality of your website. Both of these are incorrect. I hope to help clear up any questions regarding PageRank.

PageRank is based on a formula that depends on your links, and only on your links. There are no other factors that can have an effect on your PageRank (except perhaps a ban from the search engine which could result in your PageRank changing to a 0). While the PageRank algorithm is quite complex, there are ways to look at it to help understand the basics of how it works. Several factors regarding links can affect your PageRank.

These include:

The PageRank of the page that is linking to you.
The number of other links that appear on this page.
Basically what this means is that you may receive more value if you are the only link on a page with a Pagerank of 6 than if you were on a page with a PageRank of 7 that has hundreds of different links leaving it.

Have you ever wondered why it is much easier to go from a PageRank of 3 to a PageRank of 4 than it is to go from 4 to 5? This is because the PageRank you see in your toolbar is not the true PageRank. The scale of 1 – 10 helps us to understand it simply. PageRank is actually based on a logarithmic scale. This means that the difference between 1 – 2 is a factor of the difference between 2 -3, which is also a factor of the difference between 3 – 4 and so on.

Hopefully this clears up any of the basic questions many people have about PageRank. Also, remember that PageRank applies to each and every page on the Internet. That is why PageRank may vary as it passes through your website. You can help balance this by providing the search engine crawler with a solid internal linking structure, or even better, a sitemap.