New PubSub tool to measure link rankings

While content has always been regarded as king in most communication, that’s not necessarily the most important thing any more, especially with blogs.

Linking and referring – these are likely to become far more important, where what you say is one thing: who links to what you say is another.

So I was very interested to read a post in Boing Boing this morning about LinkRanks, a new service from PubSub. Says PubSub:

LinkRanks are our way of measuring the strength, persistence, and vitality of links appearing in weblogs. When PubSub reads a new weblog entry, we pull out any URIs we find and attach them to the entry in a separate field. This allows our users to include domain names or linked file types when creating subscriptions.

From this set of URIs, it’s easy to find the most popular domains. LinkRanks take one more step and calculate scores for each linking site; domains are then scored based on the values of the sites that link to them. The theory is basically that these are the links you’re most likely to click on, if you read a weblog at random.

The detailed explanation on PubSub’s site includes some frightening-looking maths equations which you can clearly understand if you have a degree in pure or applied maths (I have enough trouble figuring out pivot tables in Excel).

PubSub’s simple explanation is sufficient for me: LinkRanks are a measure of how many pages link to each particular site, with more weight given to fresher links and to links from a wider variety of pages.

On the LinkRanks site, PubSub asks that if you talk about LinkRanks on your blog to do a little experiment by including a special URL in the post, visibly or invisibly. I’m happy to do that visibly – here’s the link: