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Hosting, PBNs and Google Hilltop
Google Hilltop is a very old concept for SEO and one that I felt never got the attention it deserved/deserves. Hilltop is Google's way of telling how closely two sites are "affiliated" (connected) with each other and this is part of the equation for how valuable a link may be. If you link to your own site from your own site, it probably shouldn't count as much as a link from a site that has no affiliation.

Here's some possible ways Google can detect affiliation, and there are others:
  • Same whois info.
  • On same server/IP.
  • Uses same affiliate IDs - Especially Adsense.
  • Logs into different hosts and social media using the Chrome browser.
  • Poorly "spun" content shared across the network.

"PBNs" are Private Blog Networks which are created for SEOers to manufacture link juice. They don't have to be "blogs" and can be html pages, etc., and really should be called "private site networks". The issue is, most PBN "experts" never grasped the concept of Hilltop and leave footprints showing "affiliation" all over their PBNs.

If done correctly, PBNs can be very beneficial, especially for low competition keywords niches where a little boost may make a big difference. Here's some tools I recommend for PBNs:

AppSumo Hosting Deals - This is my AppSumo "refer a friend" link. If it's your first purchase there, we both get a $10 credit with a minimum purchase. AppSumo often has the best deals for cheap hosting. After clicking the link, do a search for "cpanel" and check the reviews and prices. You really should only use cpanel because it's very easy to transfer a site from one host to another if they both have cpanel and this can some in very handy.

Rytr - (affilate) - Writing good, unique and helpful content about just practically any topic makes creating niche sites extremely fast and easy. And the faster you can get content up on expired domains, the more likely the benefits of the name are likely to "stick".

Expired Domains - Finding domains that people have let go that already have existing links and/or traffic can give you a big advantage. Check programs like SpamZilla, Scrapebox and DomDetailer.
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