Cutts: Redirects Don’t Pass Full PageRank & More Takeaways

Eric Enge has an outstanding interview with Matt Cutts. I have read through the entire interview and pulled out four key takeaways, but there is a lot more to be learned from the interview. I’ll list my takeaways in order of what I find to be most interesting:

(1) Matt Cutts confirmed that a 301 redirect will not always pass the full PageRank from the old URL to the new URL. Although many SEOs had a feeling that this was indeed the case, this has never been confirmed by Google until now.

(2) Google does a lot of duplicate content matching and if they see several pages on a site to be duplicate to each other, they may decide to use one URL as the main and then pass the other URL’s PageRank and value to that main URL. The only issue here is that Google is deciding for you, which is the main URL. But it is nice to see Google will pass some the PageRank of those duplicate pages to the main URL.

(3) Google crawls and indexes sites based on the PageRank of the pages on your site. Crawling might also be impacted by the number of simultaneous connections your server can handle.

(4) Blocking a URL in robots.txt will not save your “crawl budget” because they still keep the URLs in their index.

Eric also posted his own 29 tidbits from his interview with Matt Cutts. I honestly feel that all SEOs should read the interview with Matt Cutts.

Related Topics: Channel: SEO | Google: SEO | Link Building: General | Top News


About The Author: is Search Engine Land's News Editor and owns RustyBrick, a NY based web consulting firm. He also runs Search Engine Roundtable, a popular search blog on very advanced SEM topics. Barry's personal blog is named Cartoon Barry and he can be followed on Twitter here. For more background information on Barry, see his full bio over here.

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  • vivitron

    “Blocking a URL in robots.txt will not save your “crawl budget” because they still keep the URLs in their index.”

    You have to be careful how you read this – from my experience, adding pages to robots.txt DOES stop Google from crawling the page in the future. Evidence from web server logs and crawl graphs in webmaster tools.

    Any other opinions?

  • winwinmantra

    I totally agree with @vivitron.

    The same sentence can be rewritten in this way.

    Blocking a URL in robots.txt will not save the URL from indexing if Google finds the same URL at any other website. It will index it irrespective of whether is blocked in robots file on actually website.

    So do not use those URLs as inbound linking (backlink) which you have blocked in robots file.

  • http://incrediblehelp incrediblehelp

    So I assume he is talking about one domain to another? Not internal 301 redirects that done very often through design changes?

    What about the Webmaster Tools feature that signals directly to Google that a domain is moving? Is their decay there?

    What about the canonical tag they Google as preached to use. Is their decay there?

    …and when i refer to PR I am talking about the back link credit a certain URL has achieved

    Why does Google say something like this without explaining the full story?

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