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"PR Gap" between US Sites and European
US have all the PR

 9:40 am on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

I have spent a lot of time looking at different sites and comparing PR.

I could hardly find a Swiss Website with a PR higher then 7. The reason for this is obvious. No high PR site that is international would link to a Swiss Website, cause that would usually be to regional. Also there is the language problem.

In the area I work in ( bicycles ) the highest PR is a PR6. The site is old and had plenty of time to gather a good ammount of links. My two sites both have a good PR5, which is higher then most. All I would need is a PR 7/8 site to link to me and I would be set.

Does anyone have any suggestions? I know about Searchking and Co., but surely there should be another way? I don't mind investing something, it is a commercial business. However, I want it to be a "clean" thing. Appreciate any Feedback!

( don't waste your time on pre-update threads.. help some poor swiss guy! ;) )



 9:59 am on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

I'm working "national" in the UK and PR5 with good content has allowed me to gain #2 and #1 positions in very competitive markets. I've now started to link exchange with competititive "regionals" in Germany. I also use G-Ad very successfuly (4%). If as you say nonone has particular high PR its a level playing field.... so I'm not to bothered about PR and content always works wonders.


 10:01 am on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

Onza, i'm in a similar situation. No other page in my theme has a higher pr than my page (pr 6, i guess). However, i'm allready one of the top sites if not the top site for many keywords 'n phrases within my topic - so it doesn't make me nervous to *only* have a pr 6. Allthough that's prob not what you wanted to hear, you don't always need high pr to beat competition.

One thought: aren't there any high pr manufacture sites that would prob like to link to / exchange with you? Or some event / race sites?

Stay away from sk like offers!


 10:04 am on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)


Unless you are trying to get 100.000 pages indexed, I doubt you necessarily need a higher Pagerank.

Your Swiss competitors will also fall in the same range.


 10:06 am on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

Thanks for your input martingj. I agree, that content rules. It is my main strategy to write good content, that is how I built my business.

However, it is annoying if a higher PR site beats you, just because they are "older". I think a higher PR would make a big difference. Also it is a good way to beat "spammy" sites.


 10:08 am on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

yes i agree, i'm in austria, and i don't know of any website in austria which has a higher pr than 7. for example the most popular website in austria (orf.at) which is the national austrian television has only a pr7, the alexa toolbar ranks it on the 946.place - and that is *a lot* for a european site (the alexa toolbar is very unknown in europe - i heard of it through WebmasterWorld)


 10:09 am on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

vitaplease, we actually have a swiss PR9! The guys who actually started the internet: Cern.ch! But don't think they will link to me :-(, even though I know that some of their employees ride my bicycle!


 10:14 am on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

Yidaki, my problem is, that I don't work with international distributors and my bicycles are for everyday use, not sports bikes. So I can't really approach sports pages.

Well.. guess a PR 6 would just give me some comfort. Right now I just feel vulnerable with my results. I built up a business mainly with good Search Engine Results and an excellent product. One would not work without another. 35% of my sales are due to SE's, 35% word of mouth and only 30% due to offline advertising.


 10:17 am on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

It's not a country issue, but rather a language issue. "Small" languages have disadvantage of smaller PR, but they have advantage of less competition in the same time. Good web sites in Czech usually have PR 5-6/10, the best ones have 7/10 (big national portals) and only one or two have 8/10. If a Czech web site has at least part of its good content in English, it easily gets more than average PR.

troels nybo nielsen

 10:25 am on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

Onza, the language problem is the main one. Which language do you use? Your nick looks Italian to my na´ve eyes.

You might build a small and high quality web directory in your field and list good and relevant websites. Those websites might want to link back.


 10:34 am on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

Thanks for all the feedback. Both my sites are in German. Both sites have a link section where I exchange links. That is how I actually got some good PR.

It is just annoying to know that dozens of links from national sites, can not make up for a link from "a big one". Maybe there is someone out there who has a high PR and could donate a text link? :-)

I guess the way to go would be to build some english content, mainly to be able to generate links from english site? Not sure if I want to do this, as it isn't really in my users interest.


 10:42 am on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

Onza, since you said your bikes are for every day use, did you look at city, recreation, traffic and nature portals / directories? They might run categories that match your theme and therefor be worth to be listed in.

Another idea is writing some good articles about your bikes and offering these articels (sure, including a about box / link to you / copyright info) to other bike portals. From my own experience i know that good content is always searched by portal webmasters.

Additionally i use google adwords to get the rest of possible visitors. Adwords can be dirt cheap if you think about the returning visitors. If you can attract people to click your adword ad and convince them that returning to your site is of value for them, adwords can bring you more traffic than just the first click.


 10:47 am on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

>mainly to be able to generate links from english site?

As long as your site is german only and your bikes are sold only in german language countries, i'd say it's a waste of time to get links from foreign sites. In the long run search engines will get better in geo targeting - returning and ranking country / language specific information and you'll loose any benefit of "foreign links".


 10:55 am on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

I agree on this. My market is Switzerland and I am pretty happy with that. Traffic from outside Switz. is of no help. However, I wouldn't really mind where the PR comes from!

Guess I will have to try and find some more PR 5/6 sites and work on my PR5 to get it to a PR6. Seeing as the business I am in is a bit neglected, it will be hard to get many more good links.

he he, it is hard work if you want to be amongst the best :-)


 10:56 am on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

In the area I work in ( bicycles ) the highest PR is a PR6.

I think you will find that if you compare like with like, in other words "bicycle" sites in the US, you will find that PR of 6 is as high as they go.

I have done a fairly comprehensive study of "hotels" and PR5 is a good rank for any individual hotel anywhere (a few get PR6, but that is as true of UK as USA)

PR "capping" is, IMO, more a function of the category you are in, rather than the country.


 11:24 am on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

Thanks cornwall, intersting input. I agree, that it is a lot harder to get good links, if you are in a "niche".

On the other side I managed to get my business model on a half page article in the largest swiss newspaper. So if they can write about it, I should be able to get good links. It is just a shame that the "big ones" are very restrictive with their linking policy.


 11:32 am on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

>It is just a shame that the "big ones" are very restrictive with their linking policy.

Ya, might be so. Do you link to them (one of them or some of them?). I recently included two dedicated outbound links to valuable sites into every page of my site (a niche directory) - the links are related to each category.

This way i open my site (rest of the listings are "closed" to spiders) and additionally increase the chance to get a link back if they see all the hits in their logs that come from my site.

You can hunt a wolf or feed him. ;)


 11:46 am on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

Looking at what the concept of PageRank is meant to represent, it's hard to see why a single hotel's site or a bicycle manufacturer's site should have a pr8 or 9.

As most contributions have already remarked with a PR5 a site is very well equipped to play for the top 5 in most of their serps.

With english being the lingua franca on the web it is in fact easier to get a high PR for an english speaking site. But then competition grows accordingly.

I suppose all of that is subject of rather slow evolutionary processes. Slow in internet terms.
We'll see what the web looks like once Asia has fully arrived on the scene. How many chinese sites will be out there linking to each other?


 11:50 am on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

>How many chinese sites will be out there

Big chance for onza - think about all the bicycles there in asia ... ;)


 11:58 am on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

you write sports bike not interested in exchanging links to everyday bike...or so...
Have a go at them as they may only sell sports bikes but their visitors may well look for something different, they may well be interested in an agressive non competitive link exchange e.g your secondary...everyday bike.....and you could use ...weekend performance....
just some ideas.... In my experience the most powerfull (commercial not PR) link is from the thank you page when someone has bought.....if you offer that and they have a half decent marketing manager they will jump on that..
(if not don't buy their shares..)

troels nybo nielsen

 12:18 pm on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

Marek, do Czech and Slovak sites link to each other? In Scandinavia we have a fairly good practice of Swedish, Norwegian and Danish websites linking to each other. In my opinion it is _very_ important for webmasters in "small" languages to be aware of the posibilities in closely related languages.

<off topic>I have got difficulties with that special r of yours. I would really like to be able to write Dvorak's name in the correct way. Could you supply me with the html-code?</off topic>

Onza, it ought to be fairly easy to build your links page into a small directory. With good content it could be of interest for all your huge Sprachraum. You might not sell anything to all these people, but the webmasters among them might want to link to you.

And Martin: Welcome to WebmasterWorld


 12:37 pm on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

>I would really like to be able to write Dvorak's name in the correct way.

troels, my quick research for Dvor<caron>ak has shown that there's no iso code for the sign <caron>. Goolive on Mac encodes it as Dvor&Mac255;ak ... (WebmasterWorld doesn't decode it: the <caron> tag is the opposite of ^).

Google doesn't return anything at this search. But if you search for "Dvor+ak" it returns czech and slowakian sites with the correct spelling and charakters. Google treats the charakter <caron> as a space.

- w3schools say: [w3schools.com] s<caron> = &scaron;
- this ancient w3org discussion [lists.w3.org] explains the usage of entities.


 1:46 pm on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

I did actually build a directory for bicycles that is very popular and also gets me a lot of traffic, as it is built pretty well for SE's. Most sites that are linked on it link back. If you submit a link there, you automatically get a confirmation with a "would you also link to us" request.

The problem is, they are usually pretty low PR sites that just don't seem to add up. And I don't seem to be getting a lot of traffic through these links. Well, guess at least it would be very well targeted traffic.

I did get pretty good at building links and good SE Results. However, I seem to have reached a point, where "only" the swiss market won't get me much further.

That is why I started this thread.


 1:50 pm on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

>I seem to have reached a point, where "only" the swiss market won't get me much further.

Okay, but is that a PR problem? Sounds to me as if the answer would be to actively target other countries. Is that site and the directory internationalised?
Obsessing with PR is not neccessarily the answer to increase marketshare.


 2:17 pm on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

<<my bicycles are for everyday use>>

Sites that focus on environmental issues might be a productive category to trade links with. A good hook for links might be some interesting, informative content (there could be lots of angles here) about ways in which it is "greener" to ride a bicycle than drive a car.


 2:22 pm on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

Looking at what the concept of PageRank is meant to represent, it's hard to see why a single hotel's site or a bicycle manufacturer's site should have a pr8 or 9.

Precisely. And there is no need for them to have that sort of PR. A hotel with PR of 6 will do well in most "normal" searches for information on hotels in its particular location.

Driving onself demented, or wasting hours getting more links, will not actually get you any (well many, anyway) more visits to that hotel's web site.

So, is it really necessary for a webmaster to look for higher PR than 6 on a bicycle manufacturers site. Will the PR 6 not bring it up well on most "normal" searches.

PR is important in realation to your competitors, and not to its absolute value.


 2:32 pm on Mar 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

Well, I have a PR5 on both sites. There is one site out there, that has a PR6 and is competing in a simular area. The reason is, that this site is out there for about 6 years, one of my sites is 3 years old, the other only 1. So all I wish for is a PR6. I am not reaching for the stars.. just a humble PR6 :-).

Can I just add, that the Feedback I got here is amazing. I will print all this out and surely will put some suggestions on my to do list. Thanks guys!

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