In this guide, we will cover the entire process on how to build your own private blog network from scratch, or how to upgrade and use your existing network and get the maximum results.
This post is a sum of 2 years of research and over 5000 PBN sites tested during this period.
What to expect from this guide?
In the beginning we will cover some basic definitions for newcomers, and advanced users can read in-depth guides for each topic. You can skip the intro and beginner guide if you are an advanced you can skip to Chapter 1.
SEO is a dynamic world that changes every few months, so I will update the guide with new information from our studies and post them on our facebook page.
I will not cover obsolete tactics to avoid confusion (hosting on hostnine, cloudflare etc.) Only current and up to date strategies.
How to get the most out of this guide?
Go through each chapter and read it carefully. If you have questions, or if you need help implementing what you learned here, you can always contact me via facebook, skype, email or comment on a blog post (I check them every day).
Without further ado, let's dig in.
What is a PBN?
Private Blog Network is a group of sites owned and maintained by an individual or group, used as a source of backlinks to the money site for the purpose of increasing Search Engine Ranking.
“Money site is the main website that you intend to rank for certain keywords and make a profit.”
How PBN Works?
Blog network sites have existing authority from the expired (or auction) domain and pass the trust and relevance via a contextual link within the body of the content, increasing the overall domain authority of your main site.
Are there any risks involved?
Any form of link-building is against Google guidelines. The benefits far outweigh the risk of penalty in my opinion. If you do It properly, you will minimize the risk and maximize the results and ROI from your sites.
Why PBNs still work?
There is an endless debate about this. After each Google update, scores of people complain how their websites got deindexed and that PBNs are dead.
It’s not entirely true because backlinks are the single most important factor when it comes to ranking, right after good On-Page SEO.
Backlinks are the essence of trust on Google. If an authority site such as bbc.co.uk links to you, it means that your site is worth checking out. Just like a testimonial for a local business owner, a backlink is a vote for your site.
Unless Google completely disregards links as a ranking signal, PBNs will continue to work. It’s just a matter of adapting to changes.
Google algorithm updates are happening all the time, and usually, one or two major updates hit SEO world each year.
To survive these major updates you need to make sure that your network is bulletproof on all fronts, and there are myriad things to watch out when building and maintaining a PBN.
Chapter 1: Planning Your PBN
A good plan implemented today is better than perfect plan implemented tomorrow. - General George Patton
I often get the question “How many PBN links do I need to rank in this niche?”
To determine the number of links and sites needed to rank a certain niche you have to check your competition. Are they using a blog network? Are they an authority in the niche? How many referring domains do they have?
Making a spreadsheet of all these things will give you an idea how many sites you need to build in order to rank.
In the first part of our series we will go over:
- How to determine the number of links needed to rank
- How much does it cost to build a good network
- How to cluster your sites and keep them safe
- Niche Relevancy and does it really matter
- Common questions answered
Preparation is crucial to success. You will avoid headaches later on when you want to scale and even save money.
Chapter 2: How to Find PBN Domains
Domains are the foundation of your network. It is important that we take things like backlink and spam checks seriously because it can mean the difference between good result, no result or even worse, negative result.
In this chapter we will go over:
- What are PBN domains
- Metrics ( Trust Flow, DA, RD etc.)
- Spam Checks (to ensure that our domain is clean)
- Importance of domain age
- Individual backlink types and checks
- Expired, Backorder and Auction domains
- Tools and services to find each of these types
In this chapter you will learn how to find pbn domains that are clean and worth adding to your network.
Chapter 3: PBN Hosting
Hosting is the most important thing to watch out for when building a proper PBN and usually where people go wrong. I have seen a lot of people buying $200 domains, hosting them on $1 hosts only to end up losing the entire network.
A word of notice: SEO hosting should be avoided because of massive footprints. I have tested this and got 30-40%+ deindex rate.
In this chapter we will go over:
- Hosting Solutions to Avoid
- Self Managed Cloud Server setup
- Easy Blog Networks
- Hosting your PBNs on Premium cPanel Hosting
- Best Companies you can use
In this post I will go over how to host a PBN with detailed description of the three methods I think are the best.
Chapter 4: Setting up your PBN
Now days it's not enough to have a basic WordPress theme installed with a spun text. Times have changed and you need to add real value to the users in order to remain indexed and actually benefit the sites you ranking to with your PBN.
In this part of the series we will cover:
- Wayback Restore vs WordPress
- Restoring Inner Pages for Better Topical Relevance
- Website Design, Layout and Structure
- Must Have Plugins
- WordPress Settings
- Content Strategy
- Social Profiles Strategy
It will allow you to create beautiful PBN sites to pass manual review, drive traffic and even monetize your network.
Chapter 5: Best PBN Practices
Now comes the "what next?" part. You can build the best PBN in the world but if you don't know how to use it there won't be any results.
In this part of the series we will go over:
- Linking out to your money site
- How to find spot on anchor text ratio for your niche (Video)
- Anchor Text Guidelines
- How to test your PBN sites for positive push (Video)
- Using LSI keywords
These are advanced strategies that you can use to ensure that your PBN is safe to use and that it will give you positive results every time.
Chapter 6: How to avoid footprints and protect your PBN
A complete checklist of 43 major PBN footprints and how to solve them and protect your network. In this part of our guide you are going to cover footprints for:
- Registrar and who is
- Setup, Plugin and Back-End
- Linking out and Content
- General and Misc Footprints
Chapter 7: How to Get Traffic for your PBN
In this chapter you will learn three of my favorite methods of generating initial PBN traffic for your websites to increase the performance by as much as 300%. It will also allow your websites to bridge that gap between a PBN and a proper website.
Chapter 8: Managing and Scaling ( Coming Soon )
Lion Zeal - Great PBN and Marketing Resource
Diggity Markting - Advanced PBN Strategies and tests
Serp Focus - Michael Milas has some great premium links and writes about SEO
Easy Blog Networks Blog - Advanced Footprint Series
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