Matt Cutts mentioned that we'd be seeing a toolbar PR update within a few days, and sure enough, I see it today, as do others. *Everyone yawns*. But that's not the most interesting aspect of the day. Matt also said, "we'll be expiring some older penalties on websites." And sure enough, he was telling the truth on that one too!

I've had a penalty on one site for two solid years. It happened during the July 27, 2006 "data refresh". I've never known what the penalty was for, but obviously I did something wrong. I eventually quit worrying about it, and just lived with whatever penalty had beset me. And today, magically, the penalty has been lifted. (Interesting that back then, Matt assured everyone that it was ONLY a data refresh, but obviously penalties were involved as well).

I'm not sure why 2 year old penalties would be lifted for no reason. Did I fix the problem sometime during the last two years without knowing it, and Google is just now getting around to acknowledging that? Or does Google no longer consider whatever I did to be a terrible crime? Or have I simply served my time in Google prison, and am being let out despite the fact that my crime continues to exist? I have no idea.

In any case, I believe this is the more interesting aspect of the day, and not the toolbar PR update that happened. Still...I DID check my PR, yes I did. Because I'm a nut like that. :)

P.S. An interesting sidenote: In the post recently (noted above) in which Matt told us the PR update was pending, he also made an interesting comment down towards the bottom of the comments. He said:

Darren, the toolbar PageRank display is not linear. It's more than twice as hard to get a PR6 compared to a PR3, for example.

It's not that we didn't already know that, but I don't recall ever seeing Matt actually say something like that...out loud. :) Good to see.

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16 Responses to “Google PR Update Today, Sure, But Also Old Penalties Dropped”

  1. Derek Edmond says:

    Donna – While I am not the best at keeping up with everything going on in the SEO blog world, I do think I remember you discussing this issue a while back. Glad that things may be on the rise again!

  2. Mickey says:

    "more than twice as hard" is probably the understatement of the year. It's been established that it's some kind of factor to reach each level, though there's no agreement on what that number is. I personally believe it's a factor of six for each level of PR, which means a PR6 is 216 times harder to reach than a PR3.

    I guess that qualifies as "more than twice as hard". :)

  3. dave dugdale says:

    wow that's neat that you saw it lifted.

    can you tell me what sector the site was in?

  4. We are running stat check on 100+ domains today, even if PR is not the thing it once was…

    It's still nice to see it change and ponder the Google reasoning behind it.

  5. Jim Gaudet says:

    Who is not addicted to the PR. Everyone wants to see what they get for a number after a bunch of changes.

    It makes me happy to see a new website of mine I put up is a PR 2 in 3 months.

  6. All of our sites have dropped by one in this recent google pagerank update, but like comments said before, we are more worried about the SERPs than a page rank – means nothing to us, results do.

  7. Most of my sites dropped by one also. A site with an exclusion penalty remains out of the Google index. I did nothing wrong except the name is too much like Google and I think the penalty is purely based on that.

    Regarding Matt's comment I thought it was reasonably well established that the PR scale was logarithmic, however it remains unknown what the base is.

  8. JK Swopes says:

    Lot's of people seem to have gotten excited about the PR updates. Some lost rank and others gained it for the first time.

    Some were expecting more and some stayed the same. The mystery that is Google PageRank remains…how is it calculated! lol

  9. I also get updated on google PR. nice and thanks to inform us

  10. Ankur says:

    Looks like sites with numerous backlinks from the same site (ie. forum sig links, site wide etc) got kicked down.

    Overall, strong sites that i manage with years or authority, that have penalties (mostly forum sites) jumped up one number.

  11. A great news about google but can you define about "refresh"


  12. DazzlinDonna says:

    Follow the link listed above where Matt "assured" us. He gives official definitions for it all. All I was saying was that in ADDITION TO the data refresh back then, they must have ALSO applied some penalties…not that there is any such thing as a data refresh penalty.

  13. SEOMichael says:

    DD, another great post, thanks for the heads up…I went to a PR4 with this one.

  14. Congrats on having your other site lifted off the penalty ban. Well, i guess it could be that your site has finished your 2 year sentence in the Google jail. Haha. Any way, an interesting note is that many sites have experienced PR drop during this most recent update.

  15. Otooo says:

    I didn't gain any PR :(, even though I had like 800 backlinks
    Although it went from PR N/A to PR0

  16. intospain says:

    We had a massive drop from 3 to 1, but like others have said it is the results that count and page rank is nothing more than a bar with no value to the general public, half of them don't know what it is or have never seen it before. Results in the SERP's are the measure of a website, and of course its users 😀