Navboost was an algorithm launched by Google in the early 2000s to determine the relevance and importance of a webpage based on the anchor text and surrounding context of links pointing to that page from within the same website.

This algorithm was used to boost the ranking of webpages that were deemed important by the site’s internal linking structure.

The idea behind Navboost was said to be if a webpage was frequently linked to from other pages within the same website using descriptive anchor text, it was likely to be an important page on that site for the given topic.

For example, if many pages on a website linked to a specific product page using the product name as the anchor text, Navboost would consider that product page to be highly relevant for searches related to that product name.

But Navboost is also the name of a system that continues to be used by Google.

This system “memorizes past clicks that have been issued for past queries” and is “trained on user data.” [Source: USA vs. Google]

Click Signals

A resume from a Google “Clicks Team” member says this about Navboost: “This is already one of Google’s strongest ranking signals. Current work is on automation in building new navboost data; recency and anti-grandfathering; and building an improved model of user behavior, taking into account impressions and display bias.”

And Michael King, CEO of, states: “In reality, Navboost has a specific module entirely focused on click signals . . . Many of these same click-based measurements are also found in another module related to indexing signals. One of the measures is the date of the ‘last good click’ to a given document. This suggests that content decay (or traffic loss over time) is also a function of a ranking page not driving the expected amount of clicks for its SERP position.”

Navboost features prominently in Rand Fishkin’s analysis of thousands of leaked Google Search API documents.

SEO consultant Dan Taylor advises: “Websites with clear, well-structured navigation and user-friendly design benefit from Navboost, with Google emphasizing precise navigation results.”

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Secrets from the Algorithm: Google Search’s Internal Engineering Documentation Has Leaked
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