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Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Graphing Profile PageRank on Google+

Some may have noticed for quite a while that we've included a profile's  within our centrality stats (for many - you'll say, "So what?" and indeed it may not be of importance for you or for many others)

However, for those that want to have a deeper understanding of how important (or our perception of PageRank importance is) then this metric - at least currently - is perhaps even more of a priority than  ...

Firstly, to get an understanding of how Profile PageRank works in relation to Google+ then review  excellent slides on Google+ Profile PageRank.

How we implement PageRank on NOD3x

On, we view Profile PageRank from a topic network perspective e.g. from all the Google+ users talking about a specific subject - e.g. include a #NS hashtag in their posts.

From the graph above (note: graph and network can be used equally to describe the visualisation above) it's easy to see - even without any formal SNA (social network analysis) that some users are getting more engagement on their posts than others; indicated by large clusters around a central dot (node).

If we then change the Node Order from Simple to PageRank, the nodes in the graph change in size to reflect where the PageRank is flowing.

Then increase the Filter Graph slider by just one notch - this will remove all profiles that have less than the PageRank value specified.

If you then click a any of the nodes remaining in the graph you'll see which post was published in relation to the saved topic. You can then hover over the same node and the centrality statistics for that profile show as strength indicator meter.

E.g. here we have +martin shervington's post on the 4th October 2013

And this is the same post index in

And here's +Linda Dee's re-share of Martin's original post - again stored in NOD3x

NOTE: Read this article if you want to understand what each of the other centrality terms mean. 

If you'd like to view the Centrality Statistics for everyone in a graph you can download the CSV button (grey icon on right hand side panel under People in Graph)

Click to view Centrality Statistics for #NS hashtag related profiles

In the right hand panel you can also see what the Maximum, Minimum and Average values are for PageRank (or related to the graph type you've selected) within the graph.

How Profile PageRank Flows

Each time someone re-shares a post, comments on or +1s a post they pass on some of their own PageRank to the user's post that they're engaging on. Important to note is that all engagement activity is not created equally: a re-share of a post mentioning the originating author passes more PageRank than not mentioning the author e.g. 

  1. By using h/t +AuthorName OR
  2. If you are reading a re-shared post and decide that you also want to re-share that post, when you do it won't include them (their +AuthorName) or any of their own commentary). Which is another reason why it's important to include a via +AuthorName when re-sharing
Both these methods pass on PageRank to the user profile that you mention. Comments don't pass on PageRank as any links or +AuthorNames mentioned in a comment are nofollow.

Applying this when you post on Google+ and WHY 

AuthorRank "isn't yet a ranking factor" - mentioned by Google's +Matt Cutts , +Othar Hansson and +John Mueller. What we do know is that PageRank does flow and increased PageRank will = increased authority. 

If an authority in your niche re-shares one of your posts on Google+ that will pass on more PageRank to you and your post.

Therefore, part of your day to day should involve engaging with people that are considered authorities in your preferred subject area(s). Then when it's time, and you have a relationship with those individuals you can ask them their opinion about your article... If they like it they may well re-share it - BOOM! If they don't re-share it (depending on what your relationship is like) they will probably tell you why or you could ask why and therefore improve the chance next time...

If you want to receive PageRank you must first credit others - mention, h/t or use via when you share) - only then will you start to see that others will do the same. In other words Pay it Forward.