What Is a Private Blog Network?
A private blog network (or PBN) is a network of websites that are used to link out to a target site to improve its search engine rankings. Private blog networks are a black hat SEO method of generating artificial backlinks and violate search engine guidelines.
Private blog networks work by passing link equity from the origin site to the target site through a backlink to increase the PageRank authority. Google PageRank is an algorithm that measures the popularity and importance of web pages based on the quality of the incoming links from third-party sites.
The advantage of a PBN is that a website owner can artificially generate high-quality backlinks for a target site without having to do any outreach or publicity. The PBN owner also controls the anchor text and flow of backlinks to any target URL they want.
However, PBN sites are considered to be a link scheme and may cause a manual or algorithmic ranking penalty for both the PBN site hosting the backlink and the target site that receives the incoming link if it is determined that both site owners are participating in this black hat SEO technique.
Backlinks are supposed to be earned naturally based on the expertise, authority, trust, and popularity of the website; not created at will through privately owned websites and blogs (i.e., a private blog network).
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The Editorial Staff at SEO Chatter is a team of search engine optimization and digital marketing experts led by Stephen Hockman with more than 15 years of experience in search engine marketing. We publish guides on the fundamentals of SEO for beginner marketers.