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Outbound Links Are A Drain On A Site's Total Pagerank

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#1 rayjoy


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Posted 12 May 2013 - 07:00 PM

I read this online recently, and find it quite confusing. Anyone care to comment? 
"Outbound links are a drain on a site's total PageRank. They leak PageRank. To counter the drain, try to ensure that the links are reciprocated. Because of the PageRank of the pages at each end of an external link, and the number of links out from those pages, reciprocal links can gain or lose PageRank. You need to take care when choosing where to exchange links. When PageRank leaks from a site via a link to another site, all the pages in the internal link structure are affected. (This doesn't always show after just 1 iteration). The page that you link out from makes a difference to which pages suffer the most loss. Without a program to perform the calculations on specific link structures, it is difficult to decide on the right page to link out from, but the generalization is to link from the one with the lowest PageRank."

#2 Alan Perkins

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Posted 13 May 2013 - 03:15 AM

Outbound links are a drain on a site's total PageRank



If you take the original Pagerank papers literally, then that could be said to be true. However, a few practical notions counteract that thinking:


  • Some sites have to have outbound links or spiders can't crawl the web. Which sites have outbound links, do you think? The good ones or the bad ones?
  • Sites that have no outbound links are a "Pagerank sink" and aren't part of the "core of the web".  Again, does this make them good candidates for high rankings?
  • Pagerank is only one of many (Google says 200+) ranking factors.


Given that sites with no outbound links are probably generally at the worse end of the Web, and sites with outbound links are at the better end, and Pagerank is only one of 200+ ranking factors, you can decide for yourself whether or not to place outbound links on your site.


That's not to say that you should place links with reckless abandon. Be careful who you link to.  But generally, outbound links are a good thing.  Without them, where would the web be?

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#3 rayjoy


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Posted 14 May 2013 - 04:44 AM

Thanks Alan, great comment!

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