What is a Private Blog Network?

A private blog network is a series of relatively minor websites that link to a central, larger website. The larger website is typically the website that has been monetized, and is central to the business involved, and the smaller websites usually have high-quality content with pre-existing back-links coming from other websites that will in turn rank your money site higher in Google.


When setting up a Private Blog to increase the rankings of your money site, it is essential to use expired domains.

Why Expired Domains Are Used

The power of gaining higher rankings in Google using Private Blog Networks comes down to one thing – expired domains. Expired domains are generally domains that have been in use before by other businesses and have since expired.

That is, the business just simply did not renew their domain. It could be for many reasons including the business simply does not operate any longer, or simply the business forgot to renew their domain (God forbid!).

Many people might wonder about the advantages associated with using expired domains. Simply put, SEO is about 2 things.

  1. Good unique quality content that Search Engines will like.
  2. Backlinks from other websites to that Good Unique content you have.

If you cut corners on the content you place on the Expired Domain then you may incur the wrath of Google Panda. Always use unique content. That is, write it yourself or pay someone else to write it for you. Never just copy and paste from another website!

Expired domains are extremely powerful because the previous business that used the domain most likely had already obtained back-links for their business. Once a domain expires those links do not go away. The links are most likely on other peoples websites pointing to this expired domain that no longer has a website on it. What a waste of the power!

These expired domains still have some authority, despite their expired status. They get this authority from the back-links pointing to them. Each back-link pointing to your website is considered a “vote”. The more “votes”, or back-links, you have the higher you rank. Generally. There are exceptions, but lets keep it simple for now.

People who use these domains have a certain degree of power as a result because of these wasted “votes”.

Once the expired domain is purchased (usually through a dedicated broker or expired domain service) then good unique content (or the websites previous content) is placed back onto the domain and the website is redeveloped. Of course, you need to re-register the domain and obtain hosting also.

The final step is then to place a back-link on the redeveloped website back to your money site. The back-links then count towards your websites that you are trying to rank. Because these links are considered powerful it would be important to use a keyword that you are trying to rank for. Anchor text diversity is important and may incur the wrath of a Google Penalty called Penguin if you are not careful.

The next time Google re-crawls or visits the expired domain (now called a Private Blog), they will read the new content and count the back-link towards your back-link profile that determines your website ranking. Remember, the more back-links you have, the higher ranking Google will give you (generally).

Advantages of Using a Private Blog Network

It’s understandable why so many people would choose to use private blog networks in spite of the challenges they can present.

For one thing, the people who want to be their own bosses in every way may automatically gravitate towards the private blog network model. This is because they are in control of the back-links that point to their money site.

The owners of these networks are also going to be able to improve their search engine ranking in general, and they will be able to do so much more quickly and efficiently as a result. The main website is going to have links on a number of different blogs as a result of being linked throughout the private blog network.

The more Private Blogs you have in your network the more authority Google will consider your money site to have. The more back-links an expired domain has pointing to it, the more power will pass through to your money site.

What is even more accurate is that the more links the expired domain has from other authoritative websites the more authority your money site will look in the eyes of Google.

That’s right. Back-links have different value depending on where they are coming from. If your website has back-links from other websites associated with your niche or industry then they will be worth more.

If your money site has back-links coming from other websites that have little or no likeness to the business you are in, then they will be worth less.

Let’s say a website is all about selling Dog Shampoo. Therefore, if your Dog Shampoo website has back-links from other websites that have Dog Products then those links will be considered to more value than having back-links from Automotive websites. That’s how it works.

The idea of obtaining expired domains that are similar to your niche that your business is in, placing good content (not copied) on those expired domains, and finally placing a back-link on the newly redeveloped private blog back to your money site can certainly help your Google rankings.

Ultimately, there are 2 main advantages of using a Private Blog Network:

  1. The back-links coming from Private Blogs will be very powerful
  2. You control the back-links


Disadvantages of Using a Private Blog Network

They go against Google Guidelines policy. Simple as that. If not setup properly then Google can trace your Private Blogs back to your money site and penalise you. Google likes everything to happen naturally on the internet. It makes it harder for them if businesses are “rigging the system”.

It’s easier for them to rank websites if things ” happen naturally”.

They simply count the links pointing to your website and compare it to the number of links pointing to your competitors websites and whoever has the most links wins (ranks higher). Generally. Of course the quality of the links also comes into play. But that’s generally how it works.

If you don’t have back-links to your website then you can forget about ranking high in Google.

But, knowing that getting a higher Google ranking comprises mostly about LINKS, LINKS, LINKS, then it would seem obvious that businesses would proactively go about obtaining links. Right?

So, you need to be careful when creating a Private Blog for your business. Google looks for footprints when deciding whether or not it considers the links to be natural or unnatural pointing to your website. Some footprints that it looks for may include:

Web Hosting

Is the Private Blog hosted on the same server as your money site? Too many websites that links to your website coming from the same hosting server can be a red flag to Google.

Domain Registration

Is the Private Blog registered at the same registrar as your money site? Too many websites that link to your website registered at the same registrar can be a red flag to Google.

Site Creation

If all your Private Blogs are created using the same Content Management System then that would also be a red flag for Google. Mix it up. Use different Content Management Systems, html, jsp, php, asp, etc. The more variation the better (the less likely that Google will think that your building them)

Remember, Google is a robot, so it uses advanced algorithms to determine if where your back-links are coming from are consider natural or unnatural.

Another disadvantage of using a Private Blog Network is the time and cost involved. A typical cost structure of a single Private Blog can be:

  • Cost of Expired Domain – ~$40 (one off cost)
  • Registration – $15 per year
  • Web Hosting – $25-40 per year
  • Content – $40 (one off cost, although always good to periodically add more content)

And then there is the cost of getting your website designer to build it for you. A typical cost of decent Private Blog can be about $150. (Add another $50 per year for ongoing domain registration and hosting.)

Lastly, there are no guarantees that the Private Blog will work. Google has been cracking down on Private Blog Networks for years. They are Google’s number #1 enemy as they make it harder for Google to rank websites that genuinely deserve to rank high (good content with natural back-links accumulating over time).

In conclusion, Private Blog Networks are cheating. If you want to take a shortcut and risk the penalty from Google then you can see some short term gain. Even long-term gain if the Network is built with little to no footprints from someone who knows what there doing.

Or you can wait longer until other people link to your website. And wait, and wait, and wait …