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[JOURNEY] Building an IM Empire STEP BY STEP

Discussion in 'Black Hat SEO' started by niggy, Jun 12, 2012.

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  1. niggy

    niggy Junior Member

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    First Things First...

    Mods, I'm really not sure if this is the best place to put this thread. Please move it if it's a problem


    Introduction
    First, a little about myself and my project:

    I've been doing mostly Whitehat SEO for about 2 years now (by that I mean the normal Webmaster responsibilities, including but not limited to copy writing, link building, on-site, improving conversions with A/B testing, and marketing in general,) on a b2b lead gen site/sales page, but I've recently decided to spread my wings a little bit and do the whole IM thing on a larger scale.

    So myself and a few associates have built a business plan for what will essentially by a large-scale IM network. We would like it to eventually get to the point where we can easily re-route large volumes of links/traffic to a number of Whitehat enterprises that we already have established. We are also considering running some services here on the BST thread when the time for that comes. The gist is that we’d be offering complete off-site SEO services powered by a (hopefully) complete portfolio of web properties. The secondary goal is that we will develop ourselves a massive platform for performing SEO research in general, from which we would share the information gathered with the community at large.

    As a means to this end, we are currently developing a backend that can manage a large link farm. It will be completely scalable and modular, and we may even offer to sell the suite itself at some point. From what I've been told, the turnaround for the tool itself is going to be about 12 weeks.

    What This Thread Should Accomplish

    I’m writing this thread to document both my process in actually creating this tool and as a place to aggregate all of the knowledge that the people on this forum are willing to share about link farming. I do not pretend to know everything there is to know about link farming; as I’ve stated above, I am actually kind of a technical/blackhat noob.
    If you are trying to start your own link network, this is definitely the thread for you, because we’ll be doing all of the heavy lifting as far seeing what works and what doesn’t. If you have anything to contribute, please post it here. This could potentially become expensive, and we’d like to make as few mistakes as possible from the beginning. If you want to laugh at a bunch of random nubs failing time and again, this might be worth your time because despite our best efforts, we probably will wind up failing a lot.

    How Much We Are Willing To Share

    We will be sharing a good amount of WHAT it is that we’re doing, but now how we’re doing it. There will perhaps be a time where we will be free to discuss our methodology for implementing our tool/network, but we ought to be successful before we spill the beans.
    As for why we would share thing information, there are a couple of reasons. First, we understand that IM is a community effort. There is plenty of loot to be made out there, and if we help each other out, there will be even more - I really don't think IM is a zero-sum game. Second, we are not interested in completely reinventing the wheel. Many of you own and operate your own networks out there, and any little tips or tricks will of course be appreciated. Likewise, this thread will remain as a collection of the knowledge that will be available to anyone on this forum.

    How Often We Will Be Updating This Thread
    We’ve set up a lot of benchmarks for ourselves in terms of goals and timelines. From what we’ve planned out so far, there are about 8 separate steps to creating a complete network. We’ll have big updates at each step, starting with Step One: The Basement.

    Step One: The Basement

    Like is probably the case for many people in this community, the seedling for this scheme came from Bluehat Eli’s SEO Empire Part 1. The TL;DR version of it is this:
    · Create a backbone of whitehat database sites with the goal of getting a bunch of pages indexed
    · Use those pages to create links
    · Launder these links through a network of sites (i.e. push the linkjuice up from our backbone sites to our money pages while washing them through a collection of sites with increasingly high quality.
    · Profit from the leveraged traffic and links
    So we have chosen to begin our journey by creating a bunch of these database sites for the mass-indexing of pages. Here are some of our database site ideas:
    · News Aggregation - We want to use these because 1) it’s easy to scrape a lot of potentially keyword –rich content from the news and press releases and 2) it should be easier to avoid duplicate content filters with news than it would be with other types of information.
    · Dictionary Sites – We want to use these because word lists are easy to come by. We’re not sure exactly how duplicate content is handled for things like dictionaries, but we have a hunch that these might work well. We also want to create some user generated dictionary sites once we get some links and traffic to leverage.
    · Forums – We want to use these because they’re pretty easy to set up. Populating them will of course be difficult. See the above note.
    · Stat Sites – There are so many databases available out there. While the data is all duplicated from other sources, the way that the data is configured makes it easy to beat duplicate content filters (in theory.) I will be advising my team to build some stat sites as I believe this is a pretty solid approach.
    · Wiki sites – If we had a way to develop unique content for a large wiki we would be all over this ASAP. In theory, there should be tremendous internal linking power and lots of keyword rich content to make this a worthwhile endeavor. If anyone has had success and auto-populating wikis with content while avoiding duplicates, please let me know in the thread.
    · Job Sites – I really like the idea of using jobsites because 1) I think that if you create them for the appropriate niche, people will actually use them, and 2) I’m told it’s relatively easy to implement this and pretty hands-off once it is implemented.

    Technical Issues

    We're trying to set up some sort of link farm support network as the tool is being worked on. Right now, we're looking into creating a massive network of content sites the goal here being to mass index a bunch of pages for potential link power. Today is the first day that we’re actually working. I’ve tasked by CS buddy with creating a dictionary first. We’re essentially building a site that uses a word list to create pages, and then grabs the content from sources on the web that we will later link back to.
    The next course of action will be to create some stat sites (think census data and the like.)

    Monetization

    We're thinking that the best way to monetize this kind of site is through AdSense. The site isn't up yet, but we'll be documenting everything once it is.

    More will come soon!
     
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  2. lagger

    lagger Power Member

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    I praise your effort here, I fear a lot of people will be lost on what your doing. This concept is a little more advanced for the common IM'r.

    I will make a suggestion to you uaw plugin. You should be able to figure out the rest ;)
     
  3. niggy

    niggy Junior Member

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    TY and duly noted. I will post my results here regardless. Any input at all is useful though!
     
  4. TheBigOneder

    TheBigOneder Registered Member

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    Subscribed. Curious...
     
  5. AR!ZONA

    AR!ZONA Regular Member

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    Just chiming in for a sub... But I will be glad to see what you and your team can do!
     
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  6. lagger

    lagger Power Member

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    I wouldn't use Adsense. A network is a network no matter what color you paint it. I would suggest using a different monitizing format.

    I would suggest using aged domains with pr.

    Also I would just abandon forums all together, the idea is to index loads of pages/links without much work. Forums would be a headache.

    Heres a thought have your sites syndicate to some web 2.0's and esc.. There are various ways to accomplish this task. Can u image your foundation sites having 10 links to every page?
     
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  7. skyblade

    skyblade Newbie

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    subbed
     
  8. lelando

    lelando Junior Member

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    subscribed to thread! goodluck with your journey to im success
     
  9. niggy

    niggy Junior Member

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    Excellent! Thanks for the support. I'm interested to see what we can do as well LOL!
     
  10. niggy

    niggy Junior Member

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    Yeah I hear what you're saying about AdSense. TBH, I'm a noob with ads and affiliates, and I think that will be my biggest challenge. There are some really great threads in the Make Money part of the forum that I will need to study. It would be nice if I didn't make a bunch of dumb mistakes right away, and perhaps you've saved me from one lagger.

    I will be using aged domains. We're not going to abandon the idea of forums, but we're not going to invest too heavily in them as far as development goes. It might be a nice asset to have, though, which is why we might just set it up and let it ride. One thing that we will do for the forums is hardcore KW research. I think the only way that we can make it work is if we give a needy, perhaps somewhat computer illerate, community a forum haha. That way atleast it'd be populated.

    Syndication is something that we're looking into as well. Can I imagine having every page of the foundation having 10 backlinks? Yes, I can. We will be testing exactly what difference the number of outbound links makes on a page, and I will be posting the results here.
     
  11. niggy

    niggy Junior Member

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    Thanks, I want to see what we can do too!
     
  12. Sexylingerie

    Sexylingerie Newbie

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    Good luck, just wish you success
     
  13. stackpush

    stackpush Newbie

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    Chiming in on this post, I'm the primary developer working on this project with niggy. I'll be documenting noteworthy techical challenges and/or stumbling blocks that we encounter along the way with the intention of supplementing this thread.
     
  14. niggy

    niggy Junior Member

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    Alright so I'm having difficulty editing the thread. I will contact a mod for help with this, but in the meantime, here's a quick update.
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    The functionality for the dictionary site is complete. For those of you that are interested in creating a dictionary site of your own, it's actually a pretty straight forward endeavor.

    Notes on a dictionary-type site
    There are a lot of these types of sites on the web. They are almost all white hat and pretty easy to find. Our main inspiration for the site's functionality was dictionary o com. As mentioned earlier in the post, we're using dictionaries for our the basement of our network.

    Some of the important steps taken in implementing this site were:
    · Finding a wordlist – Not that challenging, but important. Using a word list is what allowed us to create about 100,000 pages instantly.
    · Definitions –This was the hardest part for us. We considered several ways of doing this. Our initial instinct was to crawl other dictionary sites (we even considered using Google’s definitions) and just insert whatever we scraped. This was a straight forward approach, but we weren’t sure how legal/reliable it would be. We wound up using a free public API that inserted definitions into our database for us.
    · Implementing Automatic population of definitions – We’re not going to get into specifics here, but we would up using a method of populating each word page with a definition by only calling on the API once per word page. EZ.
    Domain, Hosting, and Monetization
    This is the next step that we’re working on. So far, we have:
    · Found an aged domain (as suggested in a previous reply.) It’s a two year old domain with a few back links, and it should be pretty easy to link up with some clean, white hat links. We’ve also made WhoIs data private.*
    *I’ve heard that this doesn’t matter if Google is determined to unearth your network because they are themselves a registrar.
    We’re still working on:
    · Hosting the site - Not sure if we need to commit to SEO hosting (I.E. hosting with separate C Class IP numbers,) or run of-the-mill. We’re probably going to go with SEO hosting just to be safe.
    · Monetization - Our basic formula is this: if a site costs $n/year it needs to earn >$n/year. We’re looking at hosting at a rate of ~$50/month for 6 C Class IPs. The price of the aged domain is ~$15/year. Let’s just suppose that the cost of the next 5 domains are roughly the same price. To pay themselves off every year, they’d need to generate about $1.90/ day. We’re shooting for about $4/day/site so that we can double up on the amount of sites that we can purchase. We’re putting up the first dictionary site today, so we’ll see how it goes.

    The dictionary is just the first of our archetypes. Our next move is the stats site. We’ll keep you posted on the progress.
     
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    Last edited: Jun 13, 2012
  15. madoctopus

    madoctopus Supreme Member

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    Eli's posts are from 2008 or around that time. At that time what he explained worked. Today it doesn't work the same. Today having a site with tens of thousands of pages give another site a few links doesn't help much. Giving many links (thousands) is probably even worse.

    While the aproach with DB/madlib sites is a good long term, large scale strategy, it requires massive amounts of sites and has huge costs. I don't think that you can have each site cover it's costs by itself. Worked a while ago, probably not a good idea now.

    Using AdSense for monetization of a network is an epic fail. Maybe not immediately but when you'll get hit, you'll get all the sites hit at once. Find other methods to monetize - something that doesn't have a footprint. That means any affiliate code that is the same on 2 sites is a potential problem. Maybe not but I don't like to risk. CB, Nextag, AdSense, YPN, etc all that have just one tracking code are potentially dangerous. Amazon works great because you can have as many tracking codes as you wish. But maybe not great for the types of sites you have in mind.

    The footprint avoidance strategy from my link networks thread still works (you asked my by PM) with the update that SEO hosting is problematic. SEO hosting is crap. Massive dangerous stinky crap. Google knows those IPs are all from a SEO host. Even the best hosts are crap. Only way to be 100% safe is to buy regular shared hosting (even very cheap at $1-2/mo with very little space and traffic is better). Also domains must have fake WHOIS info. Some can be with whois privacy but most should have real info (but fake and different from every other domain). Obviously don't use google analytics. You can use Piwik but not in default mode where you track all sites from one central server because tracking link will be the same on all sites and thats a footprint. You have to hack Piwik and create a modified tracking system where when a user loads a page instead of Piwik recording that on central server by the URL or on local host it will perform a cURL request in backend to central server. That curl request being behind the curtain is undetectable and not a footprint.

    About the site types... i wouldn't take that approach. I would instead build niche related sites with 20-100 pages each. Some on WP some on Joomla, some on Drupal some on other CMS'. Vary everything. You need a lot of sites for medium to high competitive niches. 50 is a good number to start with. Target however 100-200 sites/niche (if big/competitive) all on different shared hosting accounts. Yes it is very expensive but is the only truly safe way. From google and any competitor that might analyze the network.

    Ideally use expired/dropped domains (Godaddy auctions and the like) that have good backlinks. It is not enough for the domain to have PR. It must have actual links and those links must be strong enough to make up that PR otherwise you can expect PR to drop on next update. I could write an entire book on choosing expired domains with PR... I've seen courses explaining how to do it and they are kinda crap because they don't understand fundamentals and don't tell you about important things (they don't know). Baically you can find a PR5 on GoDaddy for $200-$300. A real PR5 with actual links to make up that PR5 would probably be won at the auction at over $1000. As a matter of fact $1000 for a real PR5 is not much. You make the math. You can pay $200 for a PR5 that gives you no real juice, just an illusion or you can pay $1000 for a real PR5 that has loads of juice. Or, you could develop fresh domains from scratch. PR doesn't really matter. PR is just an indicator not the actual value. Depending on a lot of other things a PR3 site could actually be more beneficial than a PR5 because PR is not the only thing that matters.

    I hope that helps. I would have to literally write 50 pages to explain all but i guess this will have to do :) Good luck!
     
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  16. niggy

    niggy Junior Member

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    Wow madoctopus. Thanks for your time, really appreciate you coming to the thread and dropping some knowledge. This is a lot to process. In fact, it kind of throws a monkey wrench in our entire strategy thus far. Alas, we will press on.

    I do have a couple of questions for you:
    I guess what I'm trying to figure out here is how it is possible to support some medium sized number of sites in today's SEO environment.

    I like the database site idea because they are pretty easy to set up and are very flexible in terms of the content that they generate. I'm assuming that you the niche sites are to be money sites, not a supporting network?

    And supposing that we set up a bunch of niche sites, how do we support them initially? It is obviously quite costly to set up a bunch of medium-sized sites (many weeks in content alone,) and if they aren't related then there's no point in interlinking them even if we could avoid footprints. Should we proceed to spamming free blogs with scraped content and such and then use those to begin supporting them? If we need to build a bunch of these sites and then buy links to them, that's just not economically feasible. I suppose your advice would be stellar keyword research?

    Is it worth building a backend for these medium-sized niche sites for linking, or should these be whitehat only?
    Gonna have to rethink this a little bit I guess T_T.
     
  17. madoctopus

    madoctopus Supreme Member

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    There's no way to make the support sites make money and have no footprints. Well, there is but depends on your niche and lots of other factors. You basically have to invest money into the network before it makes any money.

    You can interlink the main money sites just not in an obvious manner. Interlink just from 2 posts or so to other posts on 2nd site. From other 2 posts to 3rd site and so on. On a 100 page site is not a footprint especially if it is not an obvious link for SEO but looks natural.

    If you don't have the budget, start with 10 sites on cheap hosts $1-2/mo and grow from there.

    Focus on powerful links first - guest posts, d0f0llow comments, high PR links, etc. and relevant links - from related threads in forums and the like. You only need a handful of powerful links to rank well for mid competition keywords.

    Focus on user generated content if possible - forum or whatever - so that your visitors grow your site.

    On lower tier you can build crappy sites with computer generated content or autospun just make sure to bury them so they don't come and bite you in the ass later. I personally don't do this but then again I have content generators that produce readable content - tens of thousands of posts (i invested a year and shitloads of money in building it).

    Buy premium EMDs if possible ad if you have the budget - i invested over $8000 in premium EMDs. They rock for SEO when combined with an authority site and good links.

    Automation related, you can build an interface where you add an article in spintax and it gets scheduled for random publishing on your support network. So on one site you get first post1 on the other first is post5, etc.

    There are literally tens if not hundreds of pages I'd have to write to explain it all properly and as you can assume i don't have the time for holding your hand. Even more my methods are impossible to implement by you since they are beyond complex (some of them).

    If you are in health-pills/casino/porn niches just spam and cloack and computer gen. content as you won't get penalized and even if you do you make a profit before it happens. I know people who make money with OpenBH using completely blackhat methods. Then again you have to decide if you want a long term white hat (at least in front) system or full black hat.

    About the links you can get, there are loads. Just stop following retards that all they know is scrapebox blasts, xrumer profiles and crap links and start looking for link opportunities yourself. Both comment spam and xrumer work great just not how most people use them. As a matter of fact xrumer or sb blast directly to money site is just fine and safe if you do it drip-fed and targeted.

    Seriously whet you want me to do is just give you a strategy to follow which i won't for 3 reasons - 1. would take too much time to explain all details (detail make or break a strategy); 2. my strategy is too complicated to follow; 3. my strategy is not for anybody else's eyes.

    One thing to understand is that if you don't plan things well, especially budget and what you can realistically sustain, you will crash before you even start your engine. Don't over-extend beyond your skills, time, money, etc.

    Stop spending time on forums. If you start working on this stop reading forums and seo guides and blogs - 99% of the posts about SEO are complete crap and will make you run in circles without achieving anything. Just go and reverse engineer successful sites and competitors.

    Niche and keywords matter a lot, also competition. For some SEO fights you need the atomic bomb, for others you only need a stick to win. Pick your fight wisely.

    Any type of link building works (except n0f0llow that is just a waste of time). ANY! Even link directories (e.g. PhpLD) and profiles (though I wouldn't waste my time there at least not in the beginning). People fail at link building not because Google doesn't like a type of link but because they don't understand how to build those links and what makes a link count or get filtered (or flagged against you) and most fail because they blast hundreds or thousands at once. Pay attention to your link velocity.

    Good luck
     
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    Last edited: Jun 19, 2012
  18. niggy

    niggy Junior Member

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    Again, thanks.
     
  19. niggy

    niggy Junior Member

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    Just a quick update here.

    Decided to take madoctopus' advice here and scrap a plan centered around big indexes. We will still be doing these sites, they will be a liability until we actually draw traffic towards them. The plan now is to use Xrumer to create and support a flognet. We are still trying to get a copy of the software at the moment, so there won't be too much information to share for a while.

    I will still keep this thread updated whenever I have something to add.
     
  20. madoctopus

    madoctopus Supreme Member

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    Just prepare 20 seeds (spintax format of articles) in ultra-spun format (2 paragraphs, 3 sentences, words). Make these generic like a 17yo teen would write on his personal blog.

    Register 200 free blog accounts on 100 platforms (2/platform).

    Over the course of a few months add 10-20 (random number) of posts from those seeds in a random order (so you don't have "My dog got sick today" as 1st post on all blogs, etc).

    That's your core generic free blog network. Just don't link from it each of your satellites because it would be obvious.
     
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