With the recent months and the great delay in the latest PageRank update (rumored to be starting now) there have been numerous articles around the web about how PageRank is a outdated metric that we really need to get rid of. While I can’t argue that nothing should be based solely on the one metric, PageRank has become a standard that many, many people use to gauge how well they are doing. It also is used by nearly every advertising company that deals with web information as a metric for pricing their clients.
In short, you can whine and moan all you want, but it just isn’t going to go anywhere anytime soon. And even if it did go away, there would be a replacement in place within weeks. Maybe not from Google, but from somewhere.
So, how do the great masses of PageRank dissenters get away from it’s evil (do no evil) clutches? Get above it. That’s it. Get above PageRank’s influence. One of the best examples of this lately has been JohnChow.com. John started out a little over a year ago and has since managed to make over $20,000 in one month from the blog at JohnChow.com. He’s gotten a little bit of talk lately for being Google slapped. He got a majority of his links from a link campaign that was (in Google’s eyes) a bit shady. He traded reviews of his website with links and appropriate anchor text for a link back. Very simple link exchange of sorts. Well, turns out Google didn’t like that much and John stopped showing up in the search engines for a while. He’s mostly back now, but the funny thing is that it didn’t affect his income hardly at all.
I say he’s above PageRank because he just recently (last few days) dropped from a displayed PR6 to a PR5. Will that affect his income at all? Not likely. Most of his money now comes from private sales and reviews. Both of those will be independent of the PageRank because those buyers will know the following that John has amassed. They aren’t just going to go away because Google decides that JohnChow.com is a 5 instead of a 6. He no longer depends on his PageRank for income levels.
How do you and I get above PageRank? I haven’t quite gotten there, and I’m guessing that most of you haven’t either. I don’t have the ability to sell private adspace to the great success that John has had. Rather than sacrifice income, I’ll end up sticking with the commercial avenues for now. Maybe one day, when all you readers out there have multiplied by a couple times. But not now. For now, we have to keep grinding away and remember that not every one can be a shooting star like John Chow or Mike Arrington. Some of us have to climb our way up.