Kottke has a report on Google changing their PageRank algorithm, with speculation that the aim was to penalize sites that run text link ads and scads of cross-network promotional links, such as Weblogs Inc. sites like Engadget and TUAW. A reader sent Kottke this note:
Two weeks ago I lost 80% of my search traffic due to, I believe, using ads from Text-Link-Ads, which does not permit the “nofollow” attribute on link ads. That meant an overall drop of more than 44% of my total traffic. It also meant a 65%-95% drop in Google AdSense earnings per day and a loss of PageRank from 7 to 6.
I don’t run text link ads on DF, so, unsurprisingly, my PageRank is unchanged (7). But there must be something more going on here than a penalty for text links ads, because Aaron Swartz’s site still has a PageRank of 9, and he runs text links ads. Apple.com dropped from 10 to 9, and they run neither text link ads nor cross-network promotional links.
Update: DF’s PageRank dropped from 7 to 5 at some point tonight, so I’m chalking it up to a rejiggering of the scale.
★ Wednesday, 24 October 2007