Using PBNs (private blog networks) is an easy way to build backlinks for your website. Many big companies are doing it to pull up their pages in search engine rankings, and identifying who’s using PBNs will make it easier for you to outrank them. It can be difficult to find PBNs, however, especially if the site is using a PBN hosting provider. This guide will help shine a light on these hidden links.

What Are PBNs?

First, let’s understand the definition of a private blog network. A PBN refers to a network of websites created specifically to build backlinks for a particular. These backlinks influence the perceived authority of the site, thus improving its search engine ranking.

PBNs grant you full control over your link-building efforts and resources. You save time, make better use of your money, and can better determine your search performance (such as through keyword definition). Wondering if a PBN is better than a link-building service? The answer is: yes.

How Do PBNs Work?

To create a PBN, you first purchase expired, closeout, or auction domains that have established authority, then host them on a PBN host. Once the network is set up, you can restore old content or add new pieces to the blogs, all of which you can link back to your website.

Ways to Find PBNs

In the past, it was easier to find PBNs because they typically had the same IP addresses. Now, they’re more complicated, but there are still ways to determine if a backlink is part of a PBN. Here are some things to look for:


There are still some PBNs that use outdated practices, and you can find these by checking if they have the same IP addresses. There are a few tools online that can help you identify these—all you have to do is input the links that you want to check.

Domain Authority

A higher domain authority (DA) means a more valuable backlink. Many PBNs have a DA lower than twenty-five, which makes them easy to spot. That said, a lot of current PBN backlinks have higher DA, and those require further investigation.

WhoIs Information

If you suspect that a backlink is from a PBN, check its WhoIs information. The WhoIs database contains information and contact details about site owners. If several links turn out to come from websites owned by the same person, then they may have been taken from a PBN. Similarly, if the information is secured or hidden, that could be a signal that the owner is the same and doesn’t want this information known.

Traffic Data

PBNs typically have low traffic. Verify this by using web browser extensions or traffic websites–if the link has unusually little traffic, it could be a PBN.

Content Quality

Many of the factors that could indicate PBNs aren’t conclusive, but one of the best pieces of evidence of a PBN is the quality of content in the links. Most PBNs use low-quality photos or publish badly produced content. If you see a site using several links with these qualifiers, those links could be from PBNs.

Why Should I Find Competitors’ PBNs?

Many companies use PBNs to increase their search engine visibility. If your competitors are ranking higher than you on Google but your sites offer similar pages, you may want to uncover if they’re using PBNs. If they are, finding and replicating their PBN links can help you outrank them.

The Benefits of Superior PBNs

If you’re using PBNs but want to have an edge over your competition, use a trusted PBN hosting service like Easy Blog Networks to secure your links. Not only will you get footprint-free natural backlinks, but you also have peace of mind knowing that your links can’t be found by common PBN finding methods, keeping them safe from both search engines and your competitors.