PageRank, that is, Google’s first — but not only — algorithm for ranking content in search results, is well-known throughout the ranks of web designers and SEO experts everywhere. It was established during the early days of the Google search engine and continues to play a part to this day. However, the part it plays has steadily become less important over the last few years.
Since at least 2009, PageRank has steadily been deprecated from public view as the end-all, be-all important way to rank websites. In that year, Google decided to remove the metric from its Google Webmaster Tools service. Up until this point, webmasters could utilize it as a way to measure how well (or not well) their site was doing according to the search algorithms. Even before PageRank was dropped from Webmaster Tools, Google had been letting webmasters know that they should be focusing on more than just PageRank, and that it is not the most important metric to track.
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In fact, as mentioned, it’s become less and less important. The last recorded time the visible PageRank metric was updated was way back in November 2013, and Google executives have said that a new update would not be coming. In 2016, the company removed the last portion of publicly visible PageRank from its Google Toolbar product.
That being said, Yes, Google still uses PageRank to rank content in search results, so it’s still a factor in deciding where you rank. However, it’s likely to become even less important as time goes on and as new Google algorithms come to light. Backlinks are important, but not nearly as important as the content that you create on your website.