I know most people want links from sites which are PR8 or PR7 and that is sort of the holy grail of SEO.

But it occurred to me that Twitter is a PR-8 site. But if I tweet a link, I don't think it does anything for my SEO. So there must be some way Google distinguishes between different PR7 or PR8 sites.

So how can I know what link might be good, and what link might be less good to get? Thanks, Alex


People who chase high PR links have no idea what they are doing or talking about. A long time ago PageRank was very important and a high PR link meant high rankings. But that hasn't been true in a long time. Google has improved their algorithm tremendously since then and other more important signals, ones that actually make sense, factor into a link's value.

Some of those factors include:

  • The content of the linking page (the more closely it matches the content of the linked to page the better)
  • The ranking of the page giving the link for the content of the linked page (related to point #1)
  • The anchor text of the link
  • The text surrounding the link
  • With Panda and Penguin you can infer the quality of the overall website is a factor

There's more but that should give you an idea of what Google is looking at and why chasing PR is a waste of time.

(FYI, PageRank is per page, not per site. So Twitter is a not a PR8 website. It's homepage has a PR of 8).

  • So considering that the link is from a relevant site and page, how do you tell if that link is valuable or not? And how do you determine how valuable it might be? – Genadinik Jul 5 '13 at 16:25
  • 1
    You can't. You can guestimate its value but only Google knows exactly how valuable it is. – John Conde Jul 5 '13 at 16:30
  • so if you don't use PageRank, what factors do you use to "guesstimate?" This was really at the heart of my original question. – Genadinik Jul 5 '13 at 16:31
  • It's impossible to estimate, you should consider all links that come from other trustworthy sites that are relevant to your own. – Simon Hayter Jul 5 '13 at 17:41

Short answer is: The harder it is for you to earn the backlink, the more valuable it is.

I agree with John Conde, don't chase high PR links, there are other attributes that make a 'strong' backlink like:

  • The content
  • The social signals of that page (Google+, Twitter, Facebook, etc)
  • The amount of traffic generated from that link (the link is clicked by real people?)
  • Is the backlink from a website written in the same language of your site?

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