Every once in a great while a new website emerges that warrants greater scrutiny – question and answer site Quora is one such player.
Whether you’re a fanboy or a basher of the service as it stands today, knowing how to optimize your experience certainly won’t hurt. What makes Quora interesting, particularly for Web marketers, is that much like a search engine ranks Web pages, Quora uses an algorithm to rank answers to questions. That means we can optimize!
Unlike its algorithmic cousins in the search engines, Quora CEO Adam D’Angelo explained recently the company’s ranking algorithm, providing some interesting insights into how you might be able to receive more exposure on the site.
As you might imagine, Quora rewards those who provide the best answers – answers with more upvotes are ranking higher, and answers with more downvotes are ranking lower. It is also interesting to note that users who have written good answers in the past carry more weight and will be ranked higher, and votes from users who have written good answers in the past are also ranked higher.
If you’re worried about spammers gaming the system, Quora has got you covered. D’Angelo indicated that votes from people detected to be gaming the system through vote collusion for example will be ignored or minimized. Finally, being an admin or reviewer will not affect the scores in the Quora system.
All in all it is a very welcome sign that Quora is open about how its’ systems works. In the end, if you want your votes to have more weight, write good answers.