How to use PageRank for ecommerce websites

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30-second abstract:

  • The PageRank nonetheless exists and right here’s a deeper take a look at how Google’s Reasonable Surfer Model performs a key position
  • A nicely thought linking technique each internally and externally in your ecommerce web site can amplify search visibility
  • Google skilled, Susan Dolan and NOVOS’, Head of website positioning, Daniel Cartland information you forward of the vacation season

PageRank is a patent Google launched, which used hyperlinks to assist decide web sites rankings within the SERPs. The algorithm was named after Google founder Larry Page.

The unique patent has not been renewed and has since been up to date by different algorithms, which work to realize the identical purpose. However, by understanding the elemental ideas, we are able to higher perceive the best way to place our ecommerce websites to drive site visitors and income.

PageRank key ideas

PageRank is handed between web sites by means of hyperlinks and might be distributed by means of a single web site with inner hyperlinks.

Some pages have a better PageRank than others and thus can go on extra PageRank to pages they hyperlink to. When a web page hyperlinks to a different, a dampening issue is utilized. The unique patent set this as 0.85 – so a web page with a PageRank of 1, linking to a different web page would go 0.85 PageRank.

Key replace: the Reasonable Surfer Model

Google’s Reasonable Surfer Model signifies {that a} hyperlink that’s extra prone to be clicked on will go extra PageRank than a hyperlink that’s much less prone to be clicked on. This is set by an entire host of things, together with font measurement, shade, and anchor textual content. However, the place of a hyperlink on a web page can also be one thing that we regularly have management over as SEOs and that we are able to, subsequently, leverage.

Here is an easy, somewhat crude illustration of how sure hyperlinks will go extra/much less PageRank primarily based on the prominence of a hyperlink and the way possible it’s to be clicked on.

Build exterior hyperlinks by means of to key pages

As linking pages go PageRank, it stands to purpose that we wish to generate backlinks to key pages that we wish to rank. For most ecommerce websites, the pages that rank for the very best quantity and most revenue-driving key phrases are class pages.

Wherever attainable, we must always subsequently look to make use of ways that help hyperlink constructing by means of to the pages that drive income, which for many websites appears to be like one thing like:

  • Category pages
  • Product pages
  • Homepage
  • Blog posts

This is clearly simpler mentioned than finished. Practicing these ways with an total purpose to drive PageRank to your key pages. This reduces the dampening components at play.

How to get previous this

One frequent technique to bypass this problem in constructing hyperlinks to class pages is internally linking to key class pages we wish to push from weblog posts/Digital PR items that then get hyperlinks themselves.

Although the PageRank handed to the web page we ideally wish to rank will bear a dampening issue, this may nonetheless be extra useful than failing to get any hyperlinks in any respect to your goal web page.

It is price contemplating how related the class web page is to the weblog/PR piece it’s being included on, in addition to the place the hyperlinks are positioned on the web page, being aware of the affect the Reasonable Surfer dampening impact can have.

1. Build hyperlinks from pages with excessive PageRank

As any Digital PR will know, excessive authority pages or pages which have plenty of PageRank to go onto your individual web site are a few of the most sought-after hyperlinks to realize.

Most of the time, that is truly seen at a website stage, nonetheless as is demonstrated on this nice review of how PageRank works by Majestic, a website that ought to theoretically have a excessive PageRank can truly be considerably decreased at a web page stage by its personal inner linking.

One caveat for Digital PR groups on this regard shouldn’t be being too reliant on domain-level metrics as a proxy for hyperlinks that go a number of PageRank and are thus good for rating. Exactly which pages have excessive PageRank is nigh-on inconceivable to know, and though an over-reliance on third-party instruments is rarely optimum, they could be the closest we are able to get to determining PageRank handed by a selected web page, somewhat than a website.

2. Build hyperlinks from related websites

As a part of the Reasonable Surfer Model, it suggests {that a} hyperlink is much less prone to be adopted if the hyperlinks are unrelated to the doc:

“This reasonable surfer model reflects the fact that not all of the links associated with a document are equally likely to be followed. Examples of unlikely followed links may include “Terms of Service” hyperlinks, banner ads, and hyperlinks unrelated to the doc.”  (Source)

As a consequence, constructing hyperlinks from websites which are of upper relevance to your individual web site, is prone to go extra PageRank.

3. Remember it’s not simply in regards to the variety of hyperlinks

Due to how PageRank is calculated, the PageRank worth handed by one web site might be drastically larger than the PageRank handed by the end result of 1000s of others mixed.

This is why the reliance on the general variety of hyperlinks might be deceptive.

Use inner linking to unfold PageRank

We want to contemplate a couple of completely different strategies whereas figuring out pages that may profit essentially the most from rating and the way you go PageRank round an ecommerce web site:

  1. Link to pages you wish to rank from pages which have excessive PageRank themselves
  2. Link to pages you wish to rank extra incessantly all through the positioning
  3. Give hyperlinks to pages you need extra prominently ranked

1. Link to pages you wish to rank from pages which have excessive PageRank themselves

Pages which have excessive PageRank, from which we are able to assume to be the pages most linked to from exterior websites, can be utilized to go PageRank to – 

Homepage linking

The greatest instance of how you are able to do that is by means of the homepage. The homepage for many web sites tends to be one of the vital, if not essentially the most externally linked to web page on a web site.

This signifies that by way of PageRank, the homepage has essentially the most to go on to different inner pages.

By fastidiously deciding on which pages you hyperlink to from the homepage, and subsequently go the excessive ranges of PageRank to the important thing pages you wish to rank.

2. Link to pages you wish to rank extra incessantly all through the positioning

Another methodology to contemplate is how incessantly you hyperlink to a very powerful pages you wish to rank.

Considering that every web page can go PageRank on – this stands to purpose that if a web page is internally linked to extra incessantly, it’s prone to go on extra as in comparison with a web page much less internally linked to (though clearly influenced by the PageRank of the linking pages).

Therefore, you ought to be contemplating the place you’ll be able to add inner hyperlinks to make sure that essential pages are linked to extra incessantly, together with:

Global navigation

Due to being exterior of the primary physique content material of the web page, we are able to moderately assume there’s a dampening issue utilized to hyperlinks within the menu. However, given its position in navigation, that is prone to be far lower than within the footer. 

Therefore, because the international navigation is, because the identify suggests, linked globally from each web page on the positioning, the sheer variety of hyperlinks that will probably be passing PageRank is prone to funnel to these pages included within the navigation. These ought to subsequently be the important thing pages you wish to be rating.


As long-time followers of breadcrumbs at NOVOS, their advantage of passing PageRank to key pages shouldn’t be underestimated, because of the frequency with which completely different ranges of pages are linked to.

The advantage of breadcrumbs on ecommerce websites (exterior of usability advantages for the shoppers) is that they go PageRank as much as the core pages that typically rank for aggressive key phrases. They are usually useful to rank the classes.

Most ecommerce web sites have a pyramid construction with the homepage on the high, adopted by some core classes, an rising variety of subcategories, and many product pages. By implementing breadcrumbs on the positioning, you employ the pyramid construction to your benefit (each website positioning and CX smart). Since each product web page will hyperlink as much as its related subcategories and class, and each subcategory will hyperlink by means of to its related class.

In this sense, you distribute inner hyperlinks as an inverse pyramid, concentrating the very best quantity (if we disregard the homepage) on the core classes which are the pages typically focused for top quantity key phrases. In this sense, your ecommerce web site stands an ideal likelihood of receiving massive quantities of PageRank from inner hyperlinks.

Product pages additionally typically are simpler to construct hyperlinks to and in addition naturally generate them. The larger PageRank product pages can distribute upwards, the better is the relevance – which means lesser probabilities of struggling considerably from dampening components.

Hierarchy of ecommerce site structure and how PageRank can be transferred


Based on the Reasonable Surfer Model we are able to assume that the PageRank handed by footer hyperlinks is considerably impacted by dampening components. However, the truth that these hyperlinks are site-wide might imply that there’s some profit to together with essential pages within the footer for the buildup of PageRank.

3. Give hyperlinks to pages you need extra prominently ranked

As the Reasonable Surfer Model utilized to the probability of a hyperlink being clicked on a web page, it’s subsequently price contemplating whereabouts on a web page. This might additionally imply contemplating web page templates typically hyperlinks.

For instance, in a content material technique, the place a number of blogs are being written on a given related subject to help a class web page, linking to the class web page early within the article, with clearly associated anchor textual content, is prone to drive extra PageRank than proper on the finish of an article. On a case-by-case foundation, this distinction might seem trivial, nonetheless, on an ecommerce web site with tons of and 1000’s of blogs, the PageRank handed in complete could also be vital.

Susan Dolan is a Search Engine Optimization Consultant first to crack the Google PageRank algorithm as confirmed by Eric Schmidt’s workplace in 2014. Find her on Twitter @GoogleExpertUK.

Daniel Cartland is Head of website positioning at NOVOS, Global website positioning Agency Of The Year 2020 and 2021. A Brighton website positioning speaker, Daniel has a selected curiosity within the quirks of the best way to optimize for various CMS. Find him on Twitter @DanielCartland.

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