I’ve been using PBN Lab ever since I started using expired domains (sometime in July 2015 – so that’s almost 2 years now).
I don’t have a monthly subscription since I only need a handful of domains every now and then, but whenever I need some, PBN Lab is my go-to software.
For this particular tutorial we’re going to learn how to find awesome-quality domains just like this:
Sweet mother of God.
One single homepage link from this site increased my rankings to more or less 10 spots – I guess this isn’t the magic link that takes me to first page, but I’m pretty happy with the results.
“But Yesh, that’s a fluke – you should be called FlukeMeister instead” (man I’m so corny)
I actually found a few more.
This one’s a got a hundred RDs and ranking for some keywords.
While this one has 90, ranking for keywords, AND gets some organic traffic.
Each domain is super niche specific and has links from multiple authority sites. I would love to share more, but that’s giving away too much. 😉
Want to find expired domains like these ones? Read on and find out!
An expired domain scraper is a software or automated tool that “scrapes” webpages for expired domains, or domains that can be renewed.
The main purpose of expired domain scrapers is to find domains with good backlinks, recreate them and point a backlink to your money site. Some “white hat” SEOs also use scrapers as a tool for broken link building.
You can actually find expired domains manually, but scrapers will finish in a few hours what you can do in a month.
Needless to say, PBN Lab is my go-to scraper because it’s easy to use and provides what I need – high quality domains.
Let’s have a quick look at PBN Lab’s pros and cons first.
As for the software’s cons, I haven’t used any other scraper so I really can’t make an objective comparison. I do like to have more filters like the following:
All in all, I think PBN Lab is perfect for occasional scrapers like me. I’m paying my money’s worth.
It’s time for the exciting (although tedious) part of finding awesome domains.
I broke the entire process into 6 steps:
Before you access PBN Lab, we need to prepare three things first. Make sure to sort these first so the entire scraping process will go smoothly.
This sheet is very important because it contain all the keywords/search operators you’re going to use later on.
Instructions are already available per tab. Just fill up the cells highlighted in yellow green and the Keyword Search Compilation tab will be filled up automatically.
Note: Don’t forget to fill out what niche you’re in. Refer to the screenshot below:
The sheet is pretty much like a survey. Coming up with answers do get hard sometimes so here are some tips to help you come up with answers:
To fully utilize PBN Lab, you need an Ahrefs, a Majestic, or a Moz account to check RDs and backlinks. I do recommend Ahrefs though.
If you’re low on budget, find an SEO Group Buy. It's kind of unethical, but I'm just showing you what's available out there.
PBN Lab already has several in-depth videos already on their website. Watch the following videos and familiarize yourself with the software.
When finding expired domains, we’re mostly looking for websites owned by business that closed down, or lazy bloggers who simply stopped blogging and let their websites expire.
That being said, we don’t want any domain whose sole purpose is to make money online since these might be already spammed.
We also have a list of “red flag” words to avoid. If you find these on domain names, remove them because they are most likely going to be spammed domains.
Before you start scraping make sure to filter these by going to Your Account > Spam Settings.
Add a new Private Spam Rule by clicking “New Rule”:
And then on the Edit Form popup, set your filters:
Head over to PBN Lab and follow this article. It’s a step-by-step process of finding expired domains. You’re going to use the Keyword Search Builder on this part so make sure you have that ready as well.
Now that you know how to find expired domains (remember Step #2?), I’m going to share with you some filters that I’ve found the most success in.
Don’t even bother with metrics. Metrics are often inaccurate representations of a domain’s true quality.
Why bother looking at metrics when you can directly look at the quality of referring domains?
Recent news even suggest that Majestic metrics have gone haywire too. If you’re going to rely on metrics, I would suggest to just go for Ahrefs. Then again, I don’t really rely on any of those things.
So what metric do I use to find good expired domains?
Referring domains, baby.
The bottom line is, quantity and quality referring domains (RD) is what determines the value of a domain. Metrics like PA and TF are mere results of those links (among other unknown variables). My best domains – 100+ RDs with 1,000+ monthly traffic – only has a measly TF of 14!
Going back to PBN Lab, here’s how I set my filters on the Crawler Results page:
Ideally, I want to hit a sweet spot of more than 50 backlinks, but less than 1500.
Why? Domains with <50 backlinks won’t be powerful enough while those with >1500 backlinks has a higher chance of it being spammed. That’s my reason anyway.
Unfortunately, PBN Lab doesn’t have that “in between” feature yet, so I stick with a “Greater than 50” backlinks filter. Alternatively you can go for the “Less than 1,000 backlinks” filter, but that may leave out some good domains in the process.
It’s best to play with the filters and find a setting that fits your preferences. There’s no be all and end all steps to scraping.
BONUS TIP: Ignore .gov and .edu domains. They’re good domains but you simply can’t register them.
Now we have filtered the domain list thrice – first is by using the software’s built-in filters, second is removing the .edu and .gov domains, and thirdly trashing obviously spam domains.
That means you already have a viable list of domains you can potentially use. But let’s not stop filtering here. We need to take a closer look at each domain.
Now you have to go through each domain one by one.
The anchor cloud lets you see the most used anchor text for that particular domain. This is a quick way of verifying if your domains is good or not.
Just scroll down to view the Anchor Cloud.
Ideally, a good anchor text cloud is mixture of anchor texts types. For example:
On the flipside, if you see red flags like the ones I listed above, hit the trash button.
Sometimes the anchor cloud isn’t enough to gauge the quality of your domains.
Check the Backlinks section and see if the websites pointing to the domain pack enough punch.
Ideally, you’d like to see backlinks from authority domains like Wikipedia, Tech Crunch, or NYPost, but if the domain isn’t popular enough, contextual links (links within the actual blog post) from blogs and other publications will do just fine.
Excessive links from the following sources should be avoided:
I noticed that these type of links are fairly common in your typical mom and pop blogs and I believe they don’t pack much of a punch. Furthermore, excessive links from these sources simply don’t look good.
The final check is looking at the site’s history using Archive.org in order to answer the following questions:
All results on PBN Lab have been already checked as available, but there’s no harm done in giving it a second look:
If it’s available record everything on an Excel spreadsheet formatted like the screenshot below.
Nothing too special, just a good old sheet where you can record all available domains for registration.
Let’s recap a bit:
And that, my friends, is how I found an awesome 200+ RD domain with freakin’ traffic.
If you have any questions or want something to add to the article, just comment below.