Link exchanges is not that good.
However you can go for guest posts. There are many sellers here or you can even outreach and get some links.
If your content is good, the blog owners might give for free. Else they normally take some charge
PBNs have always worked. But make sure you do due research before purchasing links from any sellers. I have used pbns many times and they work and help in increasing the rankings. So yes even if its 2020, they are working. Just because a year has passed, doesnt mean a method becomes obsolete.
The fact you know and have joined this forum means you have already taken the first step! Here are some tips:
1. Be ready to read, read and read. Read as much as you can from this forum (affiliate marketing subforum for you)- read main posts and even replies. There is golden nuggets...
Firstly number of articles has got no relation to number of backlinks. Did you mean that ahrefs is showing 30K backlinks and google showing 200? In that case it is good - because ahrefs is extremely strong and might have crawled even the spammy backlinks you built. On the other hand, Google has...