Q and A: How can I increase my PageRank to increase sales?

QuestionDear Kalena…

I’ve had my online store for 2 yrs now and have been stuck on a PageRank of 2 it seems forever. Since my income from this site is often the only income coming in at times for my family (economy in our area is awful) I’d like to increase my Page Ranking to increase sales. I’d love to be a PR5. I am no computer genius but know enough to improve my site with the right guidance and information. Your help and knowledge would be much appreciated.

Penny

Dear Penny

While there is certainly a correlation between PageRank and high quality websites, there are a few issues if you focus purely on PageRank.

Firstly, Google may be crunching the numbers behind the scenes but the publicly visible Toolbar PageRank is only updated a few times a year, so what you see may not always be entirely accurate.

Secondly, a high PageRank doesn’t necessarily mean higher rankings in the search results – I’ve seen some great sites with low PR outrank crappy sites with higher PR.

So saying you’d like a PageRank of 5 to help increase your online conversions is like going to a car salesman and asking to buy a red car…

Some people think that red cars go faster, therefore if a car is fast it is most likely sporty and by association, sports cars are often rather sexy and luxurious.

So in actual fact, what you may want is a lightning fast, motoring masterpiece that’s mechanical brilliance is overshadowed only by its sexy aesthetics… but instead you drive away in a Citroën 2CV – a vehicle that takes the better part of a day to get from 0-60 and looks like a Transformer mated with a toad – simply because you asked for a car that was ‘red’ instead of ‘sporty’.

The point is – don’t just ask how to increase your PR – ask how you can increase your rankings, traffic and conversions instead.

So what should you be focusing on?

The first thing you should look at (from an SEO perspective) are your keywords. You could have a PR8 site and plenty of random clicks, but if you’re targeting the wrong keywords you won’t sell a thing.

The next thing to work on are your inbound links. Think of an inbound link as a ‘vote’ for your website. The more votes you have, the more popular your website will seem to the search engines.

Focus on semantically relevant links (ie. links from sites that provide similar products/services or sites that contain information that would be relevant to your users).

Sure, if you manage to gain a lot of high quality links, it will have a positive impact on your PageRank, but the goal should always be to increase your sites exposure and relevant traffic instead of gaining an extra point on an infrequently updated little green Google bar.

Once your keywords, content and links are all looking good, the final thing to work on is your website usability. While this may not strictly fall under the SEO banner, there’s really no point optimising a site to gain more traffic if you cannot convert the clicks into sales.

Hopefully this will help you start focusing on the most effective SEO factors instead of just trying to improve your PageRank.

Cheers

Peter Newsome
SiteMost SEO Services

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