How to Get Backlinks By “Stealing” From Low-Quality Pages

By | August 23, 2019

I’m sure you’ve been there before. You search for something on Google, you click
through to a page and you think to yourself: What in the world? How is this ranking on the first page of Google? Rather than getting frustrated, think differently. Because this is the perfect opportunity for
you to get backlinks from pages that probably don’t deserve them today. And in this video, I’m going to show you how
to find a ton of these pages, find thousands of link prospects, and get more backlinks
asap. Stay tuned. [music] What’s up SEOs? Sam Oh here with Ahrefs, the SEO tool that
helps you grow your search traffic, research your competitors and dominate your niche. So this video is all about finding low-quality
content that has high-quality links. Which is the perfect opportunity for you to
pitch your superior resource and earn some backlinks. So let’s get started with this link building
tutorial and find tons of relevant link prospects. Shall we? Alright, so the first step is to find a page
that has a lot of quality links, and ideally, their content should be subpar at best. This will increase your chances of gaining
a link. The best way to find these pages is to go
to Ahrefs Content Explorer and type in a seed keyword that’s related to your niche. So I’ll use “protein powder” for our example. Next, I’ll set the minimum number of referring
domains to something high like 50. And since we’re looking for pages that are
of “low quality,” a good place to start are articles that were published a while ago. So, I’ll set the publish date to something
like from somewhere in 2012 up until 2016. And we’re down to a list of around 270 results. Finally, I’m going to set the word count filter
to pages with less than 1,000 words. Now, I’m not saying that articles with less
than 1,000 words are low quality. But in general, content length is often the
byproduct of a very thorough article. So it’s more of an “eyeball” metric for me. Alright, we now have 76 pages at this point,
which is a very manageable list to filter through. To make things even easier, I’m going to sort
these results by “search traffic” in descending order. More often than not, you’ll find that pages with good-quality link profiles get the most search traffic. And if these link profiles happen to be low-quality
today, it might reveal a low-competition topic that generates search traffic. Scrolling through the results, this one immediately
stands out to me. This page has 242 referring domains, gets
over 11,000 monthly search visitors, and is less than 200 words. Clicking through to the page, you’ll see that
it’s just a curated list of images with links to separate recipe pages. From here, you can click on the caret, and
then open up the Backlink report to scan and vet the quality of the backlinks. And it looks like there are some decent sites
linking to this page. Now, something that catches my eye on this
report is that this page has links that go to an old URL, which was redirected a couple
of times. And this is actually quite common for old
content, because websites tend to consolidate pages as their site grows in size. So let’s investigate this redirected URL. I’ll just click on the caret beside the old
URL, and open the page on And there is one huge difference on this page
compared to the current version. The old version actually had the recipes on
the page. In fact, they even had a way you can download
them as a PDF. Not the prettiest, but an A for effort. But the current post forces you to click through
to a page just to see the recipe. Not a great user experience in my opinion. Now if I were to create a post on this topic,
there are two things that I’ve learned about stealing links from this page. So first, I would create some nice visuals
and add printable PDFs for each recipe for a better user experience. Second, I’ve found a point of leverage. The content that these pages are linking to
got worse. So I could integrate this somehow into my
pitch. Now, you don’t need to limit yourself to very
thin posts like our example. You can actually extract ideas from all of
these pages that have clearly attracted a lot of links. But the key point is that you should be able
to create something that’s better, which will make it easier to formulate a good pitch. So at this point, it’s time to create your
content. And the goal here is two-fold. #1. You want to create something that’s better
than the page you’ve found, but still on the same topic. So in this case, that would be “protein shake
recipes.” And #2. If the page is getting organic search traffic,
then you want to know which keywords they rank for so you can optimize your page for
maximum search traffic potential. So from inside Site explorer, you can go to
the Organic keywords report, which will show you all of the keywords that this page ranks
for. And you’ll see that it’s sorted in descending
order by search traffic. From here, you can try and extract some keywords
that can act as subtopics for your post. I won’t go any further into the actual content
creation process, because we’re talking about link building here. Instead, I’ll show you a couple more ways
to find relevant link prospects. The first way is to analyze the backlink profiles
for the top 10 ranking pages for your target keyword. So I’ll go to Ahrefs Keywords Explorer tool
and enter in “protein shake recipes.” And from here, I’ll scroll down to the bottom
of the page to see the SEO metrics for the top 10 ranking pages. From here, I’ll look for posts that are similar
to mine and see if there are any other backlink profiles I can hijack. These two look promising to me, which even
follow the same list post format as the original article we found. And it’s worth checking these articles to
make sure that the pages will be inferior to the content you create. For example, this page has no images or instructions
on a post that you think should have them. So from here, I would go to each individual
link profile of the low-quality pages, qualify link prospects, and add them to my outreach
list. Now, you don’t need to stop at just your target
keyword. The original article we were looking at was
called “50 Best Protein Shake AND Smoothie Recipes.” So I’ll scroll back up, and type in “smoothie
recipes” as our target keyword. And again, we’ll go down to the SERP overview. As you can see, there are a few more potential
opportunities that would be worth investigating. Another way to find link prospects would be
to search for variants of the title in Content Explorer. So I’ll search for something like (“protein
shake” or “smoothie”) in brackets and then I’ll add, “and recipe.” Finally, I’ll set the search type to a title
search. Now, 11,000 results is way too many to go
through, so we’ll set a minimum number of referring domains to 30, which will give us
about 118 pages with at least 30 referring domains pointing at it. The thing with referring domains is that it
can be misleading. Sometimes these linking sites won’t be of
great quality. But we can actually export these results and
throw them into Batch analysis tool to get the URL rating for each page. And URL rating represents the overall strength
of a page’s backlink profile. So I’ve already exported the results, ran
my batch analysis with the Target mode set to URL, and sorted the table by URL rating. So based on these results, I’d probably want
to reach out to people who are linking to these two pages since they seem to have decent
link profiles and just by looking at the URL, they seem to be relevant to what I’m creating. Now, I want to put this into perspective. Here are the number of referring domains for
each page I said I’d steal links from. If we add these up, that’s potentially 1048
link prospects that we found in around seven minutes. But let’s be realistic here. I would probably reach out to maybe 50% of
these websites after deduplicating and qualifying the linking pages. So that’s a total of 524 outreach emails. And let’s say you convert at a 5% link acquisition
rate. That’s 26 links from unique referring domains,
which in my opinion, would most likely be enough to get a top 10 ranking for both “protein
shake recipes,” “smoothie recipes,” and a whole bunch of long tail variations. So to scale this process, it’s literally just
a matter of going through all of the pages that you’ve found in your initial search in Content
Explorer, picking pages that have good link profiles and low-quality content, expanding
your list of link prospects, doing outreach, and then repeating the process for other keywords. Pretty straightforward, right? Now if you enjoyed this video, make sure to
like, share and subscribe, and actually, I highly recommend watching our video on creating
a link building system if you want to take this strategy a step further. So keep grinding away, go steal some links
without feeling bad, and I’ll see you in the next tutorial.

25 thoughts on “How to Get Backlinks By “Stealing” From Low-Quality Pages

  1. Hindustan Biography Post author

    This is the analysis of backlink but please show full practical by making a backlink in website so that I can rank.

  2. Mojar Recipe Post author

    It was an amazing technique. waiting for your next episode.

  3. Militsa Chervenkova Post author

    The only problem with this example of is that they are a unicorn in the Health and Fitness niche. Most of their articles are less than 500 words. They would rank for a single picture on a blank page. Their articles are written by highly authoritative athletes in the niche, and mostly, the 500 hundred words said by these athletes weight more than any 3000-words guide by a niche site, covering the same topic. However, the tip in the video is great, and I do it all the time. 🙂

  4. Blogger Kickstart Post author

    Backlink analysis is interesting but for most beginner is hard to outreach "season" website owner because our blog have not much value for them. What your best suggestion if no people would like to give you backlink? Can i ask Ahrefs to backlink to my web in future? lols

  5. Maudy Pedrao Post author

    great video, I will study but these steps and apply them. Congratulations

  6. Granit Sadiku Post author

    Yeah, this was a decent different way of thinking. Smart move. Any content upcoming related to DigitalPR? Links are appreciated even outside Ahrefs Blog.

  7. Ahrefs Post author

    This has become one of my go to link building strategies. What are you using to get backlinks to your website?

  8. App Technology in Hindi Post author

    Awesome Bro . My website is i want to more visiter please suggest me correct way.

  9. MO Nour Post author

    What a great recipe for cooking backlinks! Great content as always guys 👍

  10. Mohit Sharma Post author

    Your work appreciated Sam Oh. I have learned many things from you. Your way of explanation is too good and so easy to understand. Thanks for the tutorials.

  11. Andreea Stroie Post author

    Great tips as always, Sam! I do have a question though.. How would you explain the #1 result for 'protein shake' being a DR 15, and outranking a way superior website with a DR of 85, higher volume AND more quality backlinks like #2? I's Men's health … I see this in my industry all the time and I'm never able to find the red wire… Older sites, with high volume PR links, amazing UX and amazing brand get outranked by newer sites with a DR of under 10, and 10 backlinks altogether.. It's not frustration 🙂 I'm just trying to understand what's happening in this particular example

  12. Brckata Post author

    Great information! Much appreciated! Also, where can i get one of those tshirts? 😀 Much respect, thank you for sharing all this quality info Sam Oh & Ahrefs!

  13. Bryan Bloom Post author

    Once again Sam you rock! 👍👍. I keep learning so much every day I’m so many ways.

  14. BakaOppai - Post author

    Examples of the emails you send would be more useful.

  15. Modern Garden Rooms Post author

    does anyone know if the keyword difficulty is 10, does that mean you need 10 backlinks with that keyword as the anchor text, or just 10 backlinks in general to that page?

  16. awill guru Post author

    how much time ahrefs takes to show current added backlink?

  17. Scott Wardle Post author

    I mean, how good is this guy. Promoting ahrefs like a boss


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