Simple SEO Strategy: The “Middleman” Method

Want to see a simple SEO strategy? This is the “middleman” method.

It's a highly effective way for websites bothbig and small to maximize their Google rankings.

And today, I'm going to show you exactly howto execute this strategy to get more organic traffic to your website.

Stay tuned.

[music] What's up SEOs? Sam Oh here with Ahrefs, the SEO tool thathelps you grow your search traffic, research your competitors, and dominate your niche.

Now, this is one of my favorite SEO strategies and it's because literally anyone and everyone can use it to get results.

So before we dive in, let's get on the samepage.

In its simplest form, search engine optimizationcomes down to content and links.

And when I say links, I'm talking about bothinternal and external.

Now, content brings context to your pages.

Links, on the other hand, act as “votes” toshow search engines that your pages are worth ranking.

Most websites have two main types of content.

First are informational pieces, which I'llgeneralize as blog posts, interactive tools, and other useful non-commercial content.

The second type of content is probably whatyou want to rank the most.

And that's “money” pages.

Think of these as product pages for an ecommercestore, landing pages for a services or SaaS based business, and sales pages for thingslike online courses.

Now, if you've ever tried building qualitylinks to these revenue generating pages, I'm sure you found it quite difficult.

Generally speaking, people don't care to linkto things like product pages because it provides very little value to them and their audience.

But they do link to informational contentlike guides and reviews.

And this happens because: a.

) the external link may support a pointor statistic they're mentioning.

And b.

) it directs their visitors to helpfulcontent that they might not want to expand on.

A prime example of this theory is HubSpot.

If you look at their top 50 most linked topages, you'll see that 88% of them are blog posts and free courses.

As a result, these pages have racked up huge amounts of authority.

And that's where the “Middleman Method” comesin play.

On the far left, you have a bunch of websiteswho might be interested in linking to your content.

Let's call them “linkers.

” On the far right, you have your money pages.

And we've already established, that the vastmajority of these people won't be linking to your “money” pages.

So you add a middleman, which is your blog.

And this is going to bridge the gap between thelinkers and your revenue generating pages.

And as your middleman builds more authority, it can pass that onto your “money” pages using internal links.

And the result? More powerful money pages that should helpyou rank and hopefully bank.

Now, you might still have some questions like”which pages do I link from and which ones do I link to?” Or you might be thinking.

.

.

Sam! I don't have any authoritative pages.

No worries.

Because I'm going to answer the rest of yourquestions right now.

So step 1 is to choose money pages you wantto boost.

You know your business best, so you'll haveto use your best judgement to choose pages.

But if you're stuck, you can use this Venn diagramto choose.

The circle on the left are pages with themost traffic potential.

On the right are pages with the highest businessvalue.

You probably want to look for pages that fall somewherein the middle of the Venn diagram, where a small SEO boost has the potential to leadto significantly more traffic, and more importantly, revenue.

A great place to look is in the Organic keywordsreport in Ahrefs' Site Explorer.

As you can see, I'm searching pages acrossAhrefs' entire domain where keywords are ranking in positions 5-10.

And since we're looking for money pages tolink to, I'm excluding blog posts.

Right away, you can see that both 'keywordgenerator' and 'keyword rank checker' are in positions 9 and have commercial value to oursite.

Another way to do this is to look in GoogleAnalytics.

If you've setup ecommerce or goal tracking, you can look through your reports for pages that have a good balance between traffic, conversion, and revenue.

Alright, step 2 is to find relevant 'middleman'pages to link from.

Now remember, the middleman is your blog.

So we want to find pages that are both authoritativeand relevant.

There are two ways to do this.

The first is to do a Google search.

So I'll search for site:ahrefs.

com/blog tonarrow pages down to just our blog posts, then I'll type in the keyword I want to rankfor.

So let's click on this page and then do a find for”keyword generator.

” And you'll see a perfect place to link toour keyword generator page.

So we got relevance down, but at this pointthere are only three pages that mention “keyword generator” as a phrase match.

So let's change the query to search for thetopic “keyword research, ” since it's related to the page we want to rank.

And now we have a huge pool of blog poststo choose from.

To get all of the SEO metrics for these pages, justenable Ahrefs SEO toolbar, and then hit the Export button here to download a CSV file of Google's SERPs.

Now, it's important to note that the toolbar will only download visible results on the page.

So you can go to Settings, Search settings, and set the Results per page to the top 100 pages.

Now you'll have a nice CSV you can filterthrough with all of the SEO metrics.

In order to determine “authority, ” I recommend sorting the pages by URL Rating, which represents the overall strength of a page's backlinkprofile.

In general, the higher the UR, the strongerthe page.

In fact, we've found a clear positive correlationbetween a page's UR and its organic search traffic.

The second way to do this is to use the “Best by Links report.

” Just enter in the domain or blog subfolderyou want to analyze.

Then go to the Best by links report.

This report ranks pages of your target basedon the URL Rating.

If you prefer, you can sort your pages bythe number of referring domains pointing at your pages.

You can then use the Include search box tosearch for relevant pages where you can add internal links to your “money” pages.

Ok, so everything that I've shown you to this point works well if you have authoritative pages.

But not all websites have these so-called”High-PR” pages.

So if you fall into the latter, then you'regoing to have to build them.

To do this, I highly recommend using the Skyscrapertechnique.

If you haven't heard of this link buildingstrategy, then here's what it looks like.

You find an outdated piece of content thathas links and is relevant to the page you want to boost.

You create something that's better.

Then you reach out to all of the people linkingto the inferior page, and ask them to link to you.

So the first step is to find a relevant andoutdated page that has links.

You can do this in Content Explorer, whichhas over a billion pages of pre-vetted content.

Just search for a topic related to your “money” page.

So if I were in the body building space, Imight search for “protein powder.

” Next, I'll set a requirement for the pagesto have at least 100 unique websites linking to them or some other high number.

And this one seems promising with over 240referring domains and the page is less than 200 words.

Now, while word count isn't indicative ofa good quality page, 200 words just seems crazy low to me and is worth checking out.

The next thing you need to do is create apiece that's better.

Now, better doesn't mean that you should go and double the word count at a whopping 400 words or a post with 51 recipes over their 50.

What you want to do at this stage is analyzethe page and find points of weakness.

Can you create a more actionable guide? Can you make it more user friendly? Are there key points that are missing? Whatever “better” is to you and your industry.

.

.

do it.

So looking at the page, you'll see thatthe images are basically stock photos that look like they've been spliced together.

Also, there are no recipes on the page asthe title implies.

Instead, they have the name of the shake, a one-sentence description, and a link to a recipe that you have to click to get.

So I think I could create a better user experienceby adding printable recipe cards, talking about the benefits of each shake and whattype of athlete should use them.

Take an almond peanut butter shake as an example.

I could mention things about how this shakeis packed with heart-healthy monounsaturated fats, which is great for whatever type of person it would suit.

The point is that you want to find legitimatethings that you would do differently that adds more value to readers and linkers.

Finally, you need to reach out to the peoplelinking to this page.

Just click on the caret beside the URL andgo to the Backlinks report, which shows you all pages that are linking to the target page.

From here, you can set some filters to narrowdown your list of link prospects as well as study the anchor and surrounding text column, which can give you context into how and why the page got a link in the first place.

We have a full video on finding these typesof pages for link building, so I'll link that up in the description.

After you've built enough links and your pagehas gained some authority, you can use them as a middleman to pass authority to your money pages.

But hey.

Building an army of middlemen isn'tjust about boosting “money” pages.

It's likely that some of the content you createwill start ranking too.

And if you've chosen a topic that's relatedto your business, you'll get targeted traffic and most likely, more customers.

Now, if you enjoyed this video, then make sureto like, share and subscribe, and I'd love to know what you think about the “middlemanmethod.

” So leave a comment below.

So keep grinding away and I'll see you inthe next SEO tutorial.

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