Toolbar PR is something many webmasters have no more trust in. The common opinions are:
- PR (change) often seems to have nothing to do with rankings;
- Toolbar PR seems not to reflect the true website authority.
Believe it or not, but Toolbar PR really means something. Of course it will not show you the full picture (there are millions of sites and hundreds of niches and only ten green pixels to evaluate them); however it does play the role of the barometer for you to see what the site is worth.
A fascinating discussion on GrayBar PR is taking place at WebmasterWorld Forums that should definitely be summarized here.
2 opposing opinions on Graybar PR expressed:
- TBPR (and consequently Graybar PR) is just broken (as well as Google back link operator).
OR: Both Toolbar PR and Back link operator are not broken but “de-SEO-usefulised“. Google uses them for disinformation.
- Graybar PR plays the role of a warning:
the message might be that the page has been algorithmically flagged as looking like the kind of page that might be selling links. If this is the message, it would be directed both to the potential link buyer (to fuzz up what the TBPR of the page is) and to the potential link seller (as a note that Google is watching this page).
Graybar PR might also mean the page was dropped out of index (or just not indexed yet) or penalized for infringing the guidelines.
Graybar PR facts:
- FACT: gray PR is not the same as PR 0 (zero);
- FACT: graybar PR can mean the site is new and has not yet been into PR update;
- FACT: gray PR doesn’t directly mean the site is penalized or is deindexed;
- FACT: gray PR can be a signal of improper behavior (more checks are needed to make sure your OK / not OK);
- FACT: Toolbar PR can change and even become gray with no impact on performance;
- FACT: if gray PR did not effect other aspects of your site web life (rankings, number of indexed pages, etc), that might be a glitch inherent in the bar (wait a bit and see; or try to open the page in other browsers). Another possible signal of a glitch is that TBPR goes gray without waiting for the next PR update.