Google’s original PageRank patent states that “the rank assigned to a document is calculated from the ranks of documents citing it.”In the landscape of the internet, those citations are backlinks. Every time one page links to another, it passes along a portion of its PageRank.
PageRank is the primary way Google measures the trustworthiness, value, and quality of a web page, and pages with higher PageRank are more likely to rank well in search results. Google used to show site owners the PageRank of web pages, but they removed this feature after black-hat SEOs leveraged PageRank to manipulate search engine results.
Today, a website’s backlink profile is the best way to understand how Google perceives the authority and trustworthiness of said site. Understanding your backlink profile, and making efforts to improve it, is arguably one of the most impactful SEO strategies a site owner can implement.