Many freelance SEO consultants and marketing experts spend time and time again discussing the usefulness or uselessness of Google page rank. Is it in fact a useful tool? Or is it a useless tool in terms of the latest SEO?

If you’ve never come across Google page rank, it is a tool that measures the quality of content on a webpage by a number of factors, but mainly link popularity. So a well favored page by traffic and Google is likely to have a high ranking at around 7, whilst what Google calls a low quality page will gain a ranking of 3 or less, even sometimes getting a big fat zero!

However, the page (Google) ranking is not as great importance as once believed in SEO as it tends to favor already established websites that have links all over the internet. The fact is it tells you very little about the quality of websites starting up because it is based upon link popularity and website links.

A further problem is that the rank is determined between the value of 1 and 10, a classification that is far too large. It may mean websites gaining thousands more interest than another are classified within the same ranking classification. Thus, the page rank does not really give an accurate reading of a page’s rank, rather a suggestion.

As you know the internet is ever changing and changes regularly within a matter of minutes and days. The page (Google) rank does not keep up to date in real terms with the internet, meaning there is always going to be a difference between Google’s ranking and the actual rank at that specific time. The page rank is thus often out of date, making it not the most accurate measurement tool.

Google page rank determines its page rank based on popularity and quality of links, thus it determines what is the most popular links, not always other factors in a good quality website. Although, Google has already discussed in 2009/2010 other factors they may include to determine page ranking – one of these could be page speed. Of course, these could mean, if all goes well, that faster websites are given ranking preference over slower websites, encouraging businesses to speed up their websites for their readership and perhaps, lose some of the items that bog down a website.

Overall, a page rank will give you an idea of the popularity of a website – more of a blurry snapshot than a fully focused picture of it; however, it should not be the only way you measure the popularity of a website as it is not a precise enough determiner. In the view of a freelance SEO consultant, it is not totally useless, but it shall be more worthwhile and useful if Google uses speed to determine the quality and ranking of a website.