I have been both selling PBN domains on this forum for quite some time and using BHW services for even longer. I've encountered many misconceptions that people focus on when building their own PBN or ordering from Marketplace. I am not saying, that everything I stated in this thread is necessarily true (some things are even subjective), however, if you use a bit o logical thinking, you can come to your own conclusions. My plan is not to trash anyone. Not marketplace, not sellers, not moderators, not Trump, not Clinton, not Putin, not anyone. So bear that in mind please, as you will be reading this thread. Also, my point is not to promote my BST. I simply state things as they are or as I, and many others here, perceive them. Some things here are my subjective point of view and if you disagree, feel free to share your opinion. In some polite manner please, let's keep it civil here. 1. - Unreal Expectations and Prices There are people who have quite farfetched expectations when it comes to domains and domain quality. These people are in significant minority, but still... The price at the auctions has grown 3 fold in the past half a year. Domain that you would pay $100 for a year ago can now cost around $400. PBN links work and will continue to work unless something unimaginable happens and people are becoming more and more aware of this and the demand is higher. Thus the huge price jump in the auctions. With the expired domains it's not any different. People who cannot afford to pay these prices on auctions have to scrape their own domains. Everybody is scraping these days and the amount of domains online is limited. Especially the clean ones. For example. Out of 350K batch of domains, I was left with around 300 clean domains with TF9+ and RD10+ (yes, I know, it's just the metrics, but you get the idea). But let me get to the point. There are people who expect niche relevant domains (preferably something unreal as home improvement or parenting) with TF20+, RD40+, DA20+ and are willing to pay $30 for that. That is simply not possible. There is only SO much you can do with the expired domains and there are only THAT many good ones to be found. So please, try to understand, that finding a domain in parenting with TF20+, RD40+ and DA20+ is simply not possible. You will have hard time to finding something like that even on auctions, not alone by scraping and clean. Point - Please, for your own sake, have realistic expectations when building your private blog network, adequate to your budget. 2. - Niche Relevancy Is niche relevancy necessary? Is it better, is it more effective? Is it better to go with niche relevant domain, rather than just going after metrics? Well... there is no right or wrong here and there is no clear answer, so I am not going to go into this that much. Whether you would rather go with niche relevant domains with lower metrics, than some general niche with better metrics is up to you to test, but there are a few things that I would like to mention in regards to niche relevancy. And that is, that people have really high expectations when it comes to expired domains. There are some niches, which are impossible to get. Home improvement, parenting, etc. People search for these domains actively and you will have hard time finding them even on auctions for crazy prices. Some niches are simply impossible. Other people want way too narrow niches. For example domains about computer keyboards. This is also pretty impossible. You have to go wider. Go with Computers/hardware or with Computers overall. This is still niche relevant and you will have options to go after domains with better metrics, while still retaining niche relevance. For example. Regular domain provider has 1000 domain in stock. Out of those, maybe 100 have great metrics and 5 are relevant to your niche. How often does these 2 groups meet? Rarely. But if you decide to go wider, 5 domains change to 50 and now you can get better domains. Just please, do not expect 20 domains with TF20+ RD50+ DA30+ in some really narrow niche. This is not possible whatsoever, not even on auctions. Have realistic expectations from your PBN domains. Point - Don't expect amazing metrics if you want to receive highly niche relevant domains in obscure or hard to get niches. 3. - Obsession With Cleanliness - WARNING - Highly Subjective! You can find more about this in the points 5 to 7. The fact, that the domain is still indexed, has no impact on the fact, that it's not clean. It may be spammed to hell and yet still be indexed. Are these domains safe to use? Well... Yes and no. It depends on the level of spam they have. In my SUBJECTIVE opinion, if the domain is still indexed and has clean anchors, it's fine to use, despite its history. It doesn't matter what was on the domain in the past. Once you register and build the website, it will have new content and Google will not penalize you for something that used to be there a year ago. However, anchors should still be clean. If they are spammed and if backlink profile is terrible, it will most likely get penalized sooner or later. This view is SUBJECTIVE (can't mention it enough) and I do not sell the domains with any signs of bad history, despite the fact that they are still indexed. I use them, however, for personal purposes, churn and burn projects etc. There are people who are literally obsessed with cleanliness. They are over-thinking anchors, history of the domain in the year 2003. 1 - 2 spammy links. As I have stated before, domains are limited. Good domains even more so and amazing domains are like finding a gold hair in a pile of shit. There is no need to over-think this all the time. If you are confident that the domain has good backlink profile, clean anchors, is still indexed, but for 2 months in 2011 there was some Asian PBN, I wouldn't be way too worried. But as I said, that's just me. I do not sell such domains and never will. Just saying, that being too paranoid is just as bad as being too rash. Could this be perceived as cutting corners? Or is it better to be really safe? Well, that depends on your experience and techniques. Take it as a food for thought. Point - SUBJECTIVE - Don't be obsessed with the domain cleanliness, sometimes it's worth the risk. 4. - 301 Redirect Makes the Domain Useless Well... there are some people who think, that once the domain had been redirected in the past, it is useless and does not have any link juice whatsoever. It doesn't matter, that the domain was redirected in 2008 for a month, no, they are adamant, that the domain is worthless. Domains aren't ammunition that you once fire and then they are good for nothing. Each domain has its own link juice, which is accordingly spread whenever you link out or redirect the domain. Once you redirect the domain, the link juice will get transferred to the redirected domain, which will receive a SERP boost, if you did everything right. Once you take the redirect down, the link juice will stop flowing and the 301 receiving domain will lose the SERP boost it got. Of course, there are multiple issues with 301 redirects overall, which I am not going to thoroughly cover, because I don't want to get too much carried away. Let's just say that for 301 redirect to work, you have to do everything right. Reason why people think that the redirected domain becomes useless, is because it takes some time for Google to take the redirect into effect. It's been taking longer and longer for the 301 redirect to catch up, even months now. And when you take the redirect down, the receiving site of the redirect will still retain the link juice boost until Google realizes that the redirect has been taken down. This can also take months. That all however does not mean, that the previously 301 redirected domain is now useless. Especially if redirect has happened years ago. Also, most of the expired domains that you ever encounter online, had been redirected in some point in their life. Parked domains are being redirected left and right and most of the people are not even aware of that. Hope it's a bit more clearer now. Point - 301 redirect in the past doesn't make the domain useless and without link juice. 5. - Marketplace PBN Links Safety This part will probably be the most "controversial", but I have many people asking me about quality PBN links from BHW marketplace, especially for the long-term projects. Even though I believe there are a few sellers where it is possible to receive this kind of links, I cannot say for sure. What people have to be aware of, especially the newcomers, is that these networks are public. Sellers either provide reports, which is completely unthinkable, because everyone who orders can see your niche. Some provide screenshots with content. In that case you can just enter 2 - 3 sentences into Google and find these domains. Or they do not provide anything at all, which is of course the best call, but you can still see the backlinks in your Google Webmaster Tools, but at least, the damage is somehow limited. However, there is another group of sellers, who are doing something, for me at least, unthinkable. I am still wondering how is this even allowed, but I am not the one making the rules. Some sellers provide samples of the domains on which they post links. That's not a problem, however, some use the actual PBN domains they use for their clients. All you have to do is to ask for a sample and there you go. You will get an access to 1 - 3 websites. If you are a dickhead, you can browse them, steal dozens of niches and if you are a super dickhead, you can feel free and mass report them just for fun (there are people like this) or do whatever you want with them. And you don't even have to order from the seller, just ask for samples. And all you need for that is simply an account on BHW, which anyone can get in 2 minutes time. How is this even allowed? Sure, everyone should use due diligence when ordering, but newbies, who are often confused and don't have necessary knowledge will get, in a way, ripped off. Point - Be careful about what you are ordering from marketplace and be aware of the risks. 6. - Marketplace PBN Links Quality The safety is one thing and the quality is a different matter. The fact that many PBN websites in marketplace have OBL above 50+ and really minimal effect is at least stated in the threadss. What I believe is the problem, is the quality of those websites. Now, I don't mean the graphics and design and stuff, that will most of the times be really basic. What the actual problem is, is the anchors and links of those domains. Let me show you a free screenshots of the samples that I received some time ago. Remember, that I am not revealing any domains here and that anyone here can ask for these samples publicly and receive them. And these are really just a few domains I have randomly picked. I wouldn't touch domains like this with a 6 foot stick. It's either 95% nof0llow backlinks profile or terrible anchors or both. The fact, that the domain is still indexed and isn't penalized, doesn't make it clean. If you are okay with that, then that's not a problem, but domains like these may get penalized and deindexed sooner or later. So yes, for churn and burn and short term projects, these may be fine, if you know what you are doing. But if you are launching an Amazon affiliate site and expect it to stick, or expect these links to stick, then I will have to disappoint you. Not to mention, that with OBL of 50+, you will need a LOT of links and eventually it won't even be safe and cost effective either. But, every link can be used to your advantage after all, so it's up to you what you like to pay for and how you want to use it. After all, it's just a tool and every tool has its use. Point - Be really careful what you are buying, it's a minefield out there 7. - Marketplace PBN Links Allowed Niches Another thing I have hard time to understand, is that PBN link sellers have no issues with accepting hack/crack niches. These niches are maybe even more toxic than porn or pharmaceutical links. Do you really want to have your links on the same website with dozens of hacks/cracks links? Hack/crack sites are getting penalized left and right these days and I would stay away from them. Fact that sellers do not accept porn or pharma links and accept game hacks and cracks or PPI niches is like trying to explain to your girlfriend that she shouldn't be mad at you for cheating, that you are only sleeping with blondes and not brunettes or redheads. Same principle. Point - Ask about the niches that seller accepts before you order Conclusion Thank you for reading and please, remember. If you do not agree with me, feel free to share your thoughts, but let's keep it civil here please.