Should You Create a PBN? PBNs, which is short for “Private Blog Network,” are collections of powerful websites that you can use for SEO – building up to links to sites to help spur search rankings. Typically, the sites that comprise a PBN are based on strong domains that had been previously used. Like, if a popular auto mechanic blog shuts down after 5 years, you can buy it and leverage their age and authority to help boost your site through backlinks.
As you might imagine, setting up and using a PBN takes quite a lot of work and some cash investment. The question, of course, is whether it’s worth the effort and expense. Google has been down on PBNs though they are still considered effective if used properly. Here are three articles by experts that offer insights into whether it’s worth trying a PBN:
- Are Private Blog Networks (PBNs) Worth It In 2016? – Here, author Nathan Gotch of GotchSEO talks about the potentially high costs of acquiring domain names at auctions.
- PBNs + What’s Working In Google NOW In 2016 – In this article, “That SEO Guy” notes, “SEOs have been using PBNs for years now and I don’t see them going away anytime soon. Google loves nothing better than a link from a powerful site and still rewards this highly.” So as you can see, he’s a fan.
- Are Private Blog Networks Still SEO Effective? – According to this article on Website Magazine, a PBN does run the risk of getting de-indexed. It can even be penalized. However, the author still believes that the ranking power of a PBN is quite strong.
The main idea is to develop a plan that includes quantifiable objectives so you can work back to understanding what your return on investment (ROI) will be for your PBN. For example, if you plan to sell exercise equipment and you predict you can close a certain amount of business from the effects of the PBN, that number has to be less than the projected cost of the PBN – including the value of your own time! This is very important. It’s not just $100 for a URL. It’s $100 plus however many hours you have to spend setting it up, feeding it with content and so forth. If the numbers don’t work, go back to the drawing board.