I just read this story over on Slashdot.org. Basically the company Kinderstart.com, who’s website uses the tag “because kids don’t come with instructions”, is a parental support website targeted at what appears to be new parents. The site itself seems to be a portal to other sites that contain actual information. Besides it’s basic website look and how a majority of content seems to be hosted on other sites I find it humorous that they are considering suing Google.com for a reduction in the sites page rank.
For those who are not aware, Google.com uses an elaborate page ranking system that defines which sites appear in the search results and in what order. While the actual ranking system process is part of Googles Intellectual Property, some of the characteristics used to rank pages in Google searches are; Relevance. That is the relevance of the search terms to the content of the site, or pages being returned in the search results. Linkage, and the number of sites that link to your site, the more important a site that links to you is considered, the more important your site becomes. One last characteristic is content, if you have a site that contains no content, or the content is never updated your page rank will fall.
Take my site for example. I update the site rather regularly the content is appropriate to the over all focus of the site. Also I have some, although not a lot, of linkage from my friend’s sites. The odd Slashdot post containing my URL does not hurt either. When you do a search for my name in Google, this site (at the time this post was written) should be the first one returned.
While Kinderstart.com may have seen a reduction in traffic on their site because of a reduced google page rank, I do suggest they look at their own relevance. While they have a site that provides access to lot’s of useful information I had a hard time finding anything actually hosted on their site. They seem to only provide links to other sites that have articles and information for parents. So in order to gain more relevance they should do two things. First they need to update the look and feel of their website. Providing users a professional looking, and easy to understand, site. Secondly they need to start hosting content of their own development. Providing content, that I assume is not just a copy of someone else’s work, on their site would allow people to link directly to them and in turn increase their relevance.
I think this site’s attempt to sue Google over lost of revenue due to a lowered page rank is ill advised. Google is not responsible for their “importance” on the Internet but rather provides a meaningful way to which terms can be searched and results can be returned based on their importance in the web community.
Ironically enough it appears that the Kinderstart.com generates revenue though Google Ad’s, which are placed though out their pages.