Outgoing Links Used As Ranking Signal Flawed SEO Logic

Outgoing Links Used As Ranking Signal Flawed SEO Logic

My deleted comment from: Study – Outgoing Links Used As Ranking Signal

This is flawed logic.

Anchor text of links from a page is very important, more important than standard body text.

“The third link to the Genome Research Institute contained our test phrase as the anchor.”

This means all the linked out tests had a link with anchor text of the test phrase which the other sites did not have.

What this proves is anchor text from a page is important, that’s the ONLY conclusion that can be scientifically drawn from this test.

To test if linking out to authoritative sites mattered, some of the test domains would have had the same setup, but the links would have been to no authority domains and links to other pages on the same site (or even the same page: an anchored link), even a link to a 404 error page would have been an interesting test (does it matter if the page linked to exists?).

The final conclusion: “More importantly, we disproved the old myth of Pagerank retention which in my opinion has done nothing but harm to the internet as a whole as webmasters try to keep the ‘link juice’ in house slowly eroding the building blocks of the web.” is invalid.

PageRank is ‘spent’ as it flows through a webpage, so in the test examples 3 links worth of PR are lost from the domain, but this has zero impact on the ranking of the tested webpage, it doesn’t reduce the amount of PageRank flowing into the test webpages only what’s flowing out: you didn’t test how this impacted anything.

This is like arguing the water (PageRank) that’s already flowed through an hydroelectric dam (your test page) isn’t lost if AFTER it’s gone through the dam and generated electricity (helped rank the test webpage) half of it is redirected directly into the sewer (your outbound links to authority sites) instead of allowing it to flow into a river (links to other parts of your website) which flows through hundreds of farms (webpages) where farmers draw water (internal links) to feed crops. Can you see you haven’t tested PageRank loss at all?

To conclude PageRank isn’t important you’d have had to have a second set of test webpages linked from the main test webpages. The tests with the 3 ‘authoritative’ links would pass less PageRank to the second test webpage and you could then test it’s impact on ranking.

No conclusions about PageRank can be made.

Continue Reading SEO Ranking Test