Panda-ized Expired Domains And PBNs

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I've got a question for some of the more advanced users on this forum I hope I can learn something here.

I found this expired domain with a killer backlink profile. I mean tons of toolbar PR links (yes I know toolbar PR is way out of date) from VERY legitimate sources (Huffingtonpost, etc..)

Looking at the archive.org record it's abundantly clear this site was scraping news stories from other major sources and re-posting these stories on the site with a link back to the source.

It appears that there was 0 original content on the site.

The site stopped updating on June 14, 2012. Looking back at Google's algorithm change history I can see that on June, 8 2012 Panda 3.7 was released.

In my mind this screams of a site that was probably hit by this algo change.

I have 0% experience with Panda penalties. Though I'd imagine fixing the content on the page would fix the penalty. In this case I'd have all new content.

On the other hand if it was a Manual penalty, I'd imagine it would have expired by now.

Now the question is this: Would you personally think this domain is PBN worthy? Or would you pass due to the nature of the site's previous content.
#domains #expired #pandaized #pbns
  • Profile picture of the author kid3378
    Originally Posted by twilightofidols View Post

    Now the question is this: Would you personally think this domain is PBN worthy? Or would you pass due to the nature of the site's previous content.
    For me personally, I'd definitely grab it while I have the chance and the budget. :3
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    • Profile picture of the author oadvantage
      Some teach that you can type in the domain into Google and if it does not appear on top of the search results, then it has been penalized in some way.

      This is not always the case because some great domains are not even indexed.

      I like to check the backlink profile for blog comments, spammy blog commenting, xrumer backlinks, etc. If a majority of the links are like this, I avoid the domain.

      I like to see incontext backlinks.

      If the backlinks look "normal", then it is a go for me.

      There are many other factors, but this is what I start with.
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      • Profile picture of the author twilightofidols
        Originally Posted by kid3378 View Post

        For me personally, I'd definitely grab it while I have the chance and the budget. :3
        Thanks for the feedback.

        Originally Posted by oadvantage View Post


        This is not always the case because some great domains are not even indexed.

        I like to check the backlink profile for blog comments, spammy blog commenting, xrumer backlinks, etc. If a majority of the links are like this, I avoid the domain.
        The backlink profile definitely checks out. No evidence of blackhat in the link profile. It's not indexed, but the domain expired 2 years ago so it's hard to tell why as Google makes an attempt to remove expired/parked domains from the index.
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  • Profile picture of the author oadvantage
    You are right on this, but I doubt it had a manual penalty if the backlink profile checks out.
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  • Profile picture of the author Steve Waller
    Buy it, put a site up with a few pages, give one of those pages a very uncompetitive long tail phrase as the title (+ H1, in meta description, etc), wait a few weeks, check to see if that page ranks for the long tail phrase.

    If it doesn't then there is I'd guess some sort of penalty remains, if it ranks then I'd be fairly comfortable putting links to my money site on that site.
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  • Profile picture of the author GyuMan82
    Whether it has been "Panda-Ized" or not doesn't matter if you're going to make it part of a PBN.

    Now if you were using it to build a website on that you were trying to rank that would be another story, but if you're just going to use it for links you should be fine.

    I would be more concerned though that the domain may have been de-indexed since it appears it was scraping content previously. This could be a problem moving forward as you may not be able to get the domain into the Google Index unless submitting a request through Google Webmaster Tools, which seems kind of silly especially if it will be part of a PBN.
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  • Profile picture of the author VH
    I also have a similar question.

    I've found a expired domain with 44 .edu backlinks which are in the footer of the 1 edu site. It was the web developer for the university. The Domain name has no relevance to my domain. Because the link is on the footer is this a risk or might it be worth the $10?

    V
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    • Profile picture of the author Steve Waller
      Originally Posted by VH View Post

      I also have a similar question.

      I've found a expired domain with 44 .edu backlinks which are in the footer of the 1 edu site. It was the web developer for the university. The Domain name has no relevance to my domain. Because the link is on the footer is this a risk or might it be worth the $10?

      V
      That's a no-brainer. Assuming it hasn't been bought by an SEO before and spammed in any way then you should buy it.

      There is the risk that the domain will lose it's effectiveness should the footer link ever be removed but for reg fee it's always worth it. You can always check archive to see when this domain was last live and if it's been a while then it is somewhat likely that the link will remain for some time at least.
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      • Profile picture of the author VH
        Originally Posted by Steve Waller View Post

        That's a no-brainer. Assuming it hasn't been bought by an SEO before and spammed in any way then you should buy it.

        There is the risk that the domain will lose it's effectiveness should the footer link ever be removed but for reg fee it's always worth it. You can always check archive to see when this domain was last live and if it's been a while then it is somewhat likely that the link will remain for some time at least.
        Hi Steve,

        Thanks for the reply. It expired in Feb but on Wayback I could only find an active version of the site from 2012.

        I want to redirect this domain to my new domain. Is there any testing I can do to ensure its clean. All the back links I can find look natural. Customers websites, awards etc.

        Cheers,

        V
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      • Profile picture of the author VH
        Also because it was a web design company and I am a education company would this alert google to the fact that this might not be a legit 301 redirect?

        Sorry for the basic questions but this is new territory for me.

        Cheers,

        V
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        • Profile picture of the author Steve Waller
          Originally Posted by VH View Post

          Hi Steve,

          Thanks for the reply. It expired in Feb but on Wayback I could only find an active version of the site from 2012.

          I want to redirect this domain to my new domain. Is there any testing I can do to ensure its clean. All the back links I can find look natural. Customers websites, awards etc.

          Cheers,

          V
          Check one of the backlink tools such as Moz or Majestic for their "pages" or "top pages" report because it's not always the links that show spam but the pages that a spammer has created on the domain.

          If you pay then you can see whois history but it's not cheap.

          Originally Posted by VH View Post

          Also because it was a web design company and I am a education company would this alert google to the fact that this might not be a legit 301 redirect?

          Sorry for the basic questions but this is new territory for me.

          Cheers,

          V
          Personally I wouldn't 301 it as I haven't been seeing the greatest of results this way. I'd build the site out and link back that way because you then get to choose a more relevant anchor and more relevant content to surround it.
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          • Profile picture of the author VH
            Originally Posted by Steve Waller View Post

            Check one of the backlink tools such as Moz or Majestic for their "pages" or "top pages" report because it's not always the links that show spam but the pages that a spammer has created on the domain.

            If you pay then you can see whois history but it's not cheap.



            Personally I wouldn't 301 it as I haven't been seeing the greatest of results this way. I'd build the site out and link back that way because you then get to choose a more relevant anchor and more relevant content to surround it.
            Hi Steve,

            Thanks for all your help. Only 2 top pages the Home Page and a Testimonial page. The old site is pretty small.

            Domain Authority is 15. Page Authority is 29. 41 linking root domains from .edu. and the remainder from small business commercials with very low domain authorities. The domain is 7 years old.

            If I build it out I can make the links and site history make sense to humans and bots as I can relate the topic to my business.

            Is building out a domain like this worth the effort in your opinion?

            Cheers,

            V
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            • Profile picture of the author twilightofidols
              Originally Posted by Steve Waller View Post

              Buy it, put a site up with a few pages, give one of those pages a very uncompetitive long tail phrase as the title (+ H1, in meta description, etc), wait a few weeks, check to see if that page ranks for the long tail phrase.

              If it doesn't then there is I'd guess some sort of penalty remains, if it ranks then I'd be fairly comfortable putting links to my money site on that site.
              This will likely be my strategy with this particular domain going forward.

              Originally Posted by GyuMan82 View Post

              I would be more concerned though that the domain may have been de-indexed since it appears it was scraping content previously. This could be a problem moving forward as you may not be able to get the domain into the Google Index unless submitting a request through Google Webmaster Tools, which seems kind of silly especially if it will be part of a PBN.
              Right this is my primary concern. That the domain might have suffered a manual penalty at some point that could have caused it to be de-indexed. However, it's my understanding of manuals that most of their expiration dates are well less than 2 years, and many don't result in being deindexed. (I've never dealt with a manual on my sites, and don't work with clients personally thank the lucky stars). Though this is all conjecture on my end.
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            • Profile picture of the author Steve Waller
              Originally Posted by VH View Post

              Hi Steve,

              Thanks for all your help. Only 2 top pages the Home Page and a Testimonial page. The old site is pretty small.

              Domain Authority is 15. Page Authority is 29. 41 linking root domains from .edu. and the remainder from small business commercials with very low domain authorities. The domain is 7 years old.

              If I build it out I can make the links and site history make sense to humans and bots as I can relate the topic to my business.

              Is building out a domain like this worth the effort in your opinion?

              Cheers,

              V
              Yes.

              Let's not pollute the OPs thread with this side topic though - if you have more questions start your own thread or PM me.
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  • Profile picture of the author DiggitySEO
    With Panda, if a site was hit, you can make changes and it will come back to normal after the next roll out, refresh, or update. Typically 1-2 months tops.

    So in your case, you'll be repurposing the domain and likely writing panda-friendly content. Everything will be good to go after some time.
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