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What's to "Like"

By Jason Steele
on June 8, 2011

A current buzz-word among marketing and social networking is "Like". Do you "Like" this? Should I "Like" that? What does "Like" mean? "Like" is a function on Facebook that, when you click the "Like" button, it grants you access to more information about that company/product/place etc. The Like button , according to Facebook developers, lets a user share their content with friends on Facebook. When the user clicks the Like button on a site, a story appears in the user's friends' News Feed with a link back to the website.

The Facebook "like" has become a large discussion point and whether or not it's a new parameter for measuring a web page value rather than the Google PageRank.

So what is PageRank? Google PageRank is a technology that determines the "importance" of a webpage by looking at what other pages link to it, as well as other data. So when you Google something it determines how high on the page it appears. Interestingly enough PageRank is named after the algorithm's creator, Larry Page, and not specific to a webpage's importance.

Where PageRank plays an authentication role for measuring a web page quality, the Facebook "Like" plays into its popularity. People like to read pages or articles that their friends have "liked" but not as many people feel compelled to read them based on anonymous user page-ranking.

The common reason is most users don't know what Google PageRank is but they know the Facebook Like button. With the "Like" button they can participate in judging the quality of the content. It's a marginally active way to share their opinion with the world. The Google PageRank algorithm is fixed by Google and doesn't permit you to express your view, instead it 'counts' the number of links back to a page. Adding a link back to a page is more effort than just clicking a thumbs-up "LIKE" button.

The common reason is most users don't know what Google PageRank is but they know the Facebook Like button. With the "Like" button they can participate in judging the quality of the content. It's a marginally active way to share their opinion with the world. The Google PageRank algorithm is fixed by Google and doesn't permit you to express your view, instead it 'counts' the number of links back to a page. Adding a link back to a page is more effort than just clicking a thumbs-up "LIKE" button.

In regards to SEO Google PageRank is still is a winner for now but the LIKES are catching up. According to search industry veteran Bruce Clay "I think that we're going to see that likes and referrals and recommendations have started to be, if not already are a major, major part of all the ranking algorithms, and there's going to be a general shift towards improving quality of sites, not improving size of sites."

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