While there are many theories about SEO, basics are quite simple. Top pages on Google for a search query have passed all the possible signals and algorithms which Google uses. Quickest way to optimize your site is to start with those. If you can get a link from one of those, or from pages they link to, you are off to a good start!
On-page SEO is completely under your control. Off-page SEO and link building on the other hand depend on people who you want to link to you, and this step can consume huge amount of time and effort without a guarantee of success. It is very important to select the potentially most useful pages for link building and outreach. If you narrow the selection to the best ones, you will spend much less time outreaching to less valuable resources. Top results may not be easy to get a link from, but pages they link to may be much easier. The more relevant the better.
examplestopical crawl settings
What above achieves is the following, for the list of 100 pages which actually rank the best in Google for your query phrase, our machine learning algorithm will learn what defines a topic for those 100 pages, and what other relevant phrases are significant for those pages. Then, using the optimized crawling algorithm, it will retrieve the most relevant on-topic content (which will cover other relevant phrases, not only the one you queried on Google). The prospect pages backlink tool will show you the most popular among these relevant pages which link to at least few relevant external domains, and are therefore likely link building candidates.
In other words:
You can skip to the step 8 above right away, we'll do the remaining 7 steps:
This is still the most important step. Once you find your prospect pages, don't simply spam them as it will be an opportunity wasted. Sometimes it is worthwhile creating a new page or even a new feature on your website which will make it more relevant to that prospect page, and which will make it more likely to get a link there. I have done similar things numerous times, and it almost always works.. Sometimes I spend days in implementing new content or feature, but then successfully get a high quality link.