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Google may also look at how often your site is bookmarked, how frequently
people search for your brand, how frequently people click on your listing, who
your advertisers are, and other various feedback they can get from their toolbar.
Google was awarded a patent on March 31, 2005 covering these types of topics,
but put forth in much greater detail than I have done here. While I do not think
they are already necessarily doing all the things they mention in the patent, I think
they may eventually use many of them. The patent is interesting and worth reading
if you are deeply interested in SEO and information retrieval. If you do not want
to read it, you may want to look at the Threadwatch post (URL:
http://www.threadwatch.org/node/2115) that mentioned it and the follow- up thread
(URL: http://www.threadwatch.org/node/2132).
TrustRank
TrustRank is an algorithm that can be used to bias PageRank by placing additional
authority on human-reviewed, trusted sites. Trust propagates out from the trusted
pages and sites to pages and sites they link to. TrustRank also can be used to
neutralize the effects of some types of low-quality link building from untrusted
sources as well as to flag high-PageRank, low-trust websites for human review.
In the TrustRank research paper, the seed sites fit the following criteria:
• Seed sites linked to many other websites. DMOZ and the Yahoo!
Directory, for example, were most likely seed sites.
• Seed sites were controlled by major corporations, educational bodies,
or governmental bodies.

I believe TrustRank (or a similar algorithm) is a huge part of Google's
current search algorithm. If you look at a link through the eyes of a search
engineer or search editor, rather than just looking at PageRank, you would do far
better in terms of evaluating the value of a link.
Look at a site and ask yourself questions like, "Is this the type of site I would use as
a seed site?" If the answer to that is "no," then ask, "Is this site directly or
indirectly associated with seed sites?" and "Why would quality seed sites want to
link to this site or sites linking to this site?"
Topic Sensitive TrustRank
Since TrustRank is topic-independent, it could place too much relevancy on topics
that are overrepresented in the seed set of trusted sites. Thus you could use
DMOZ or the Yahoo! Directory to help extend out the seeded sites to a broader
array of sites and topically bias their TrustRank score based on the categories in
which they are listed. You could then filter out the bottom half of trusted sites in
each category to prevent too many spam sites from being selected as trust sources.

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