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I have two domains hosted on one hosting account that talk about subject X. However, one site is like a Blog and the other is like a news site. Is it bad for SEO if I link between these two sites. I ask this because I heard that linking these domains makes some called PBN or private blog network and Google doesn't like that.

Is this true?

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There is always some level of danger linking between domains that you own, however, it is perfectly legal to do and something that should be done. Where Google draws the line is debatable though a lot is understood.

Know that no matter how hard you try, Google will relate your sites using a semantics database. That is inescapable short of some extraordinary means. So know that Google will be looking at both sites and not one or the other in many regards.

But do not let that scare you. Many people have more than one site.

Be that as it may. Google will look at link patterns to determine if you are trying to influence the SERPs. However, with just two sites, I am fairly sure you will fly under the radar for much of it. Still, if linking between the two sites are not done in a natural way, as anyone would normally and reasonably do, then the danger is very real.

What you do not want to do is any site-wide linking which are often found in headers, footers, and sidebars. As well, you want to keep your links as natural as possible and a bit sparse. Do not go crazy linking every page using keyword centric links. Make sure that each link is appropriate and conversational and that the topics of the linked pages are compatible. It is best to link within content using a sentence or partial sentence with at least a semantic subject, predicate, and object. This would be something like: Find out more about how Apache Tiki interacts with Apache Solr. where Apache Tiki is the subject, interacts with is the predicate, and Apache Solr is the object. There are many other semantic clues in this sentence such as the use of the word how, but let's leave it at that for now.

Since it is common that many sites are news and blog sites, perhaps it is best just to avoid the whole issue and make just one site. It is far easier to make one site rank and perform well than to divide the effort. It has been my experience that this could become messy and some level of duplication will arise. Just my 1.27 shillings worth.

  • +1 for your good example semantic subject, predicate, and object :) – Sathiya Kumar Oct 30 '15 at 6:55
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If you do it in unnatural way, my answer is Yes!

Why don't you own a single website that can have a news section instead of having two domains of same niche from same hosting and pointing each other?

Private Blog Network is the most common way for some SEO's to get inbound links easily. They put news in one website and they will give hyper link to their another website(Main Website) by Main Keyword as anchor text. PBNs are highly risk and Google will easily identify these things. This is definitely fine in some point when you do it naturally. But if you build unnaturally by giving links at the Header or Footer or Sidebar it will definitely hurt you.

I'm saying all these from my own experience only.

Most of the people own a blog or news website intentionally for giving link to main website. If you have only two websites like this as you said in your question, some times you won't get hurt at the beginning but it will motivate you to do it in huge range that will definitely hurt you in near future.

As Closetnoc stated in his answer, It's for better and easy to rank one website than maintaining two websites of same niche.

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    Back at'cha buddy!! I have noticed that you give particularly good answers. I am glad you are here. – closetnoc Oct 30 '15 at 14:36
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Why shouldn't a visitor not know about your other websites? But that's no reason to let them know from every single page on both sites.

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