Pagerank Sculpting – Is it Really Dead?

by seoibiza on 14, June, 2009

So there’s been a bit of a rumpus over this Pagerank sculpting U-Turn by MC this last couple of weeks, but even after further (unofficial) confirmation from a Googler, we, along with a few notable others, think this may still all a bit of a red herring of one kind or another, thrown to confuse the clamoring adoring, doting, thronging masses.

The other thing that has mainly been puzzling us about the whole furor, is the question of duplicate links on a page, to another page. In this situation, how is this is any different, whether we use nofollow or not?

Remember - we think Google only count the First link anyway.. ..don’t we?

So presumably this PR (or linkjuice) from the second link has been “evaporating” away all this time without anybody noticing? and if the new nofollow PR rule came in a while back, suddenly “evaporating off” a large part of the web’s collective PR..

..and nobody noticed.. ???

So yes, maybe nofollow now doesn’t push the PR difference back through the remaining links, but still, what’s actually the difference? because linking twice to the same page is also link equity wasted?

Duplicate live link – value not passed on 2nd link Duplicate 2nd link nofollowed – value not passed

Why was there not a similar outcry about PR (lets say linkjuice) “evaporating” each time you link to a page for the second time?

Savy SEOs & web designers have been cutting back on duplicate links on their pages for longtime anyway, it’s a fundamental part of the SEO design process to ensure that you have only the links you really need on each page, and with as much linkweight to each as possible, whilst staying user and usability focused.

Obviously Superior SEO web design is about having the right links in the right places in the first place though. Nofollow usage to attempt to adjust link weighting between pages seemed to (and still does) not generally hurt things, but if it’s actually not doing what we all think it is, it might be a laugh to just take it off everywhere (on this, our experimental site) and see what happens.

If it bombs massively and that’s all we did, we’ll know they’re fibbing.

In the meantime we’re not rushing round undoing every nofollow and refuse to believe the paranoia about it marking you as “SEO savy” either, mainly because most of what we’ve seen in the way of implementation of it, wasn’t very. And it’s just been too widely adopted to now suddenly say:

” hah! tricked you, down you go..”

Many sites, templates, themes, blogs and forums come with nofollow configured all the way through the coding already, these can’t all be labeled as naughty SEO profiled types and Google could never tar them all so.

And anyway, of course link sculpting is not dead, it was around long before nofollow was, under various other names, and using various other technologies, so for now the essence of

“making each link on the page count as much as possible”

..Within the rules of course, will continue to be as important as always.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Everfluxx 14, June, 2009 at 11:10 am

Hi. Personally, I don’t believe Matt Cutts said what he said at SMX Advanced with the intended purpose of scaring or confusing people (even if that has been the effect of his statements on many SEOs so far, eheh).

Anyway, Matt recently confirmed in a couple of places that he’s working on a “PR sculpting blog post”, so hopefully we’ll have more official information soon about how Google handles nofollow.

seoibiza 14, June, 2009 at 12:26 pm

Greetings from Ibiza :) how’s Italy today?

it will certainly be interesting to see how they explain this and any idea of timings of alleged changes.

the serps have been very mobile anyway on all sites we watch, NF or not, so difficult to pinpoint anything.

like your blog, hooked up to yr twitter too ;)

Everfluxx 14, June, 2009 at 8:13 pm

Hi there! Pretty hot here in Italy today: 31°C right now where I live. Wish I were in Ibiza… 8)

Thanks for your feedback and appreciation. Following you on Twitter as well! ;)

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