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Link Popularity And Authority

Search engine ranking algorithms try to emulate a human user's behavior. To rank Web pages for their users, they simulate millions of virtual trails thru the Web trying to measure popularity and authority. In a search query's context, there are three major factors determining a Web page's placement on the SERP (simplified):

  1. Relevancy of the renderable content. Relevancy is determined by keyword matches and more sophisticated technologies.
  2. Authority on the topic which the engine has identified by analyzing the search term. Authority is determined by analyzing anchor text and topical relations of linked pages (and their neighborhood). The ranking factor authority is a bridge between relevancy and popularity, it takes both incoming and outgoing links into account.
  3. Popularity. A page's popularity is determined by counting and weighting on-topic inbound links, and (to a low degree currently) bookmarks, tracked visits duration and clicks on the SERPs. The topical popularity as used in a search query's page ranking does not equal link popularity or PageRank™. LinkPop/PageRank™ stands for the total number of incoming links, and their universally weighting based on the source page's score. When it comes to placements on the SERPs, related natural links (topical PageRank™) count more than the mixture of artificial and natural inbound links (LinkPop/PageRank™)
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