Who leads the pack for commercial property websites in the UK? Part 2: Google Page Rank and Inbound Links

(Part 2/5)

Read ‘Who leads the pack for commercial property websites in the UK? Part 1: Website Grader’

In the previous part of this blog series we looked at the marketing effectiveness ratings of UK commercial property websites according to WebsiteGrader.com. In this part we will be looking at how Google views the value of commercial property web sites using Google Page Rank as the metric for doing this. Please note that we could look at other search engines but given Google is the dominant player, we assume that if you rank well for the Google search term it follows you probably will for other search engines.

Google Page Rank

Now a lot has been written about page rank and its importance (or otherwise) but there is no doubt that this is the most public indicator of the value of a site to Google. However, it does not automatically follow that a site with a page rank of 5 will listed above a site with a page rank of 3 on a search results page. A search on the term “Commercial Property” in google.co.uk today (22nd Feb 2010 @15:10) shows www.ukbusinessproperty.co.uk as second on the list despite it having a page rank of 2 (and despite 74 of this list having a page rank of 3 or above). There is a lot more to SEO than a good page rank for one keyword or term. However, the companies in the list with a page rank of 5 or above are listed below:

Top UK Commercial Property Websites (Google Page Rank)

Some surprises again?

EGPropertyLink – doesn’t even feature on this list as it has a page rank of 4. Despite this, it still commands a lot of traffic and when searching on the term “Commercial Property” in Google.co.uk today (22nd Feb 2010 @15:10) it shows first on the list. However, it does probably mean that for less popular, more local, keywords such as “Industrial units in Aldershot” (we promise we picked this at random) it doesn’t rank as highly as NovaLoca, ComProperty and many local agents (EGPropertyLink’s first entry is 26th on the list).

The Crown Estate – this is similar to Land Securities as it seems to punch well above its weight in terms of page rank (and WebsiteGrader result). Looking more carefully this high ranking is probably mainly due to the quantity and quality of the 221 inbound links from other websites according to Alexa.com (which include high ranking sites such as Google.com, BBC.co.uk, Guardian.co.uk, Economist.com, and sky.com). It really shows the importance Google places on inbound links.

But not such a surprise ...

The top 20 here are probably more representative of a list of top commercial property organisations in the UK than the previous section. This is almost certainly because the larger the company, the more likely you are to have inbound links to your site from well viewed sites (news stories, blogs etc.). It shows how hard it is for smaller organisations to break in and how much effort this really takes.

To give you an example of what we mean, the table below lists the top 20 websites from the list in terms of inbound links (often referred to as back links) as measured by Alexa.com:

Top UK Commercial Property Websites (Alexa UK Traffic Rank) 1

If you want a very full explanation on Google Page rank and the Google algorithm, you may want to refer to the article “Page Rank Uncovered” by Chris Ridings and Mike Shishigin but beware, it is not a short document.

Read ‘Who leads the way for commercial property websites in the UK? Part 3: Site Traffic’