TrustRank is a search engine algorithm that measures the trustworthiness and authority of a website based on its relationship with other reputable websites. It was developed by Google and Yahoo! to combat web spam and identify high-quality, reliable web pages.

Key points about TrustRank:

  • Seed sites: Search engines manually select a set of trusted “seed sites” known for their high-quality content and reliable information.
  • Link analysis: TrustRank algorithms analyze the links between websites, starting from the seed sites. Websites that receive links from trusted sites inherit some of that trust.
  • Trust propagation: The more trusted links a website receives, the higher its TrustRank. This trust is then passed on to other websites it links to, although the amount of trust decreases with each link hop.
  • Combating spam: By prioritizing websites with high TrustRank, search engines can filter out low-quality or spammy websites and provide users with more relevant and trustworthy search results.

While TrustRank is not an official Google ranking factor, the concept of trust and authority based on link relationships is a crucial aspect of modern search engine algorithms.

Building high-quality backlinks from reputable websites can help improve a website’s perceived trust and authority, positively impacting its search engine rankings.

Be aware though, that as of 2024, backlinks are no longer considered among Google’s top 3 ranking factors according to Gary Illyes (@methode), an analyst with Google.