What are the PBNs and do they have a future?
What does PBN mean?
The PBN (Private Blog Network) is a private network of blogs that are all connected to a main website, the money site. The objective of this network of sites is to push the money site through its network of links, to ensure better visibility on Google. Although very tempting for SEOs and their customers, the PBN is a manipulation technique prohibited by Google. It should therefore be used with the utmost caution.
How did PNB appear in SEO SEO?
Initially based on “on page” criteria, the search engines were easily manipulated by black hat SEOs who did not hesitate to provide them with content with keyword repetitions in their html codes.
Little by little, the engines have taken more into account the backlinks (inbound links) in their ranking criteria, as is the case for Google’s PageRank. This is how spam made its appearance with the creation of false links to deceive the engines.
Today, engine indexing methods are even more sophisticated and it is only natural that PBNs have stepped in to promote the key pages of a main site through a network of interconnected satellite sites and thereby establish authority on the web.
What are the different categories of PBN?
PBNs poor in content
These PBNs are reserved for black hat SEOs who aim for a short-term result, the most risky method being that of automatically generated sites. We then speak of industrialized PBN. The goal is to push the money site by increasing traffic, to the detriment of the quality of content. To do this, the referrer will reserve expired domain names and create sites that are poor in content but perfectly optimized for Google. They will create somehow the “link juice” to boost the visibility of the money site.
In this category, we can also include general blogs, built on expired domain names and which gather all kinds of information on very varied subjects and whose content is quite poor. The idea here is to push several money sites through these blogs filled with press releases. Each article will aim to boost this or that money site. It also happens that SEOs sell sponsored products through this type of blog to increase their profitability.
PBNs rich in content
These PBNs bring quality content and are more designed to appeal to users.
For example, the SEO will install a blog from a new domain name. He will then provide articles that are perfectly written and answer specific questions from users. A network of several sites of this kind can raise one or more money sites with great efficiency. Indeed, the quality of the articles will be enhanced by the search engines and will improve the visibility of the main sites.
Another type of site that can be used to create a PBN is the news site. Very responsive, because proposing at frequent intervals new articles related to the news, it encourages the user to come back often to keep informed. This allows to increase its traffic by retaining visitors, this approach is very effective but it takes a lot of time, especially to respond to comments from users. A network of news sites not only increases the visibility of a main site but it will also be very beneficial for its image.
Finally, the community sites types “forums”, “classifieds” or “file sharing” are again oriented “users”. They allow users of the same group to bring content themselves to these sites. The visitor generating content, can even become a real ambassador of the site through social networks. Again, this technique is particularly effective but a community manager will be needed to find new members and check daily messages sent by visitors.
Is this still a method that works?
Setting up a PBN can be very effective in the long term. Indeed, this technique allows a site to pass a course when its positioning caps. It is also a very flexible solution: the PBN is growing and evolving constantly to further improve its visibility on Google while falling through the cracks. As you will have understood, it is a practice that can work if it is used with the greatest care and if it is implemented in a spirit of responsibility towards yourself and your customers.
What are the risks ?
The main difficulty of a PBN is not to be questioned by Google. It will have to scramble the tracks so that Google does not detect the deception and understands the purpose of the links that unite the sites between them. Hence the interest of hiding these links so that the PBN is not recognized as such by Google. The risk is high because if the subterfuge is discovered, the collateral damage may be significant. In the same way that Google had launched Penguin to track down fake links, then stopped the wave of Nofollow attributes used until 2009 to scuttle PageRank, it seems obvious that it will do everything to flush out PBN and punish them severely .
However, note that it is not so much the support of the links created that will attract the attention of Google but rather its anchoring. Be careful therefore outbound hyperlinks.
How to create a clean and responsible PBN?
When you decide to create a PBN, whether for your own sites or for a customer’s, it’s important to be aware of the risks involved and to use this technique subtly.
Notify your customers of the risks involved
If you create PBNs for your own sites, you are solely responsible for the consequences if Google detects them.
If you work with customers who pay you for SEO linking service, you can offer them to create a PBN, but in this case, it is imperative to keep them informed of the risks associated with this type of practice. So your client will apply his SEO strategy with full knowledge of the facts. Charge the referencer to warn that in case of punishment on a site, Google will classify it in a spam folder that will demote it automatically and the slightest difference, the sentence will be more radical. And in this case, it is the customer alone who will be held responsible and not the SEO.
Choose the right PBN strategy
We saw a little earlier the different categories of sites that can be used to build a PBN. We do not recommend content-poor site strategies because, while easy to implement and effective in the short term, they are also the most risky for you or your customers.
The longer and more complex to implement, the qualitative PBN strategies (news blogs, community blogs, etc.), will bring you more durable results and less easily detectable by Google. For example, an effective PBN will mix different types of sites for the same money site (a forum, a news site, several thematic information sites, etc.).
These PBNs are clearly designed in the interest of the user through high value-added content. They allow to generate qualified traffic to the main site and represent a more interesting option in the long term.
In conclusion, we recommend you to be particularly demanding in the way of designing a PBN. Its effectiveness will depend on a responsible content strategy developed for the benefit of Internet users.
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