Dons boss Derek McInnes is open to securing loan signings to boost his squad for the upcoming season.
In the previous campaign McInnes had six loan players at Pittodrie.
He views loans as an effective way to secure quality that would otherwise be outwith Aberdeen’s budget.
McInnes said: “The loan market can help you bridge that quality gap.
“Like most Scottish teams the out-of-contract list is usually our first port of call.
“We look at those on that list and then we’ll look at the loan market.
“That is further down the line but we will try to bring good players to the club again this summer.”
McInnes faces a busy summer of rebuilding having lost 10 players at the end of last season. The six loan players all returned to their parent clubs: Ryan Christie (Celtic), Kenny McLean (Norwich), Greg Stewart (Birmingham), Dominic Ball (Rotherham), Chidi Nwakali (Manchester City) and Freddie Woodman (Newcastle).
Christie and McLean both featured for Scotland in the recent friendlies against Peru and Mexico.
Woodman won the Toulon Tournament with England this month and picked up the goalkeeper of the tournament award.
Already an U21 World Cup winner, Woodman was the hero for the Dons in the Scottish Cup penalty shoot-out win over Kilmarnock.
The loan system has allowed Aberdeen to secure the services of players beyond their budget like Norwich’s James Maddison.
Southampton and Leicester have both tabled £20 million bids for Maddison who was on loan at Pittodrie for the first half of the 2015-16 season.
McInnes said: “James Maddison was a loan who was on wages way above what we could do. But Norwich saw sense in putting him to us.
“We have previously done that type of thing with players like Michael Hector and Danny Ward.”
Everton are also interested in Maddison and view him as the long-term replacement for Wayne Rooney, who is set to join DC United.
The midfielder scored a sensational late free kick to secure a 2-1 win over Rangers in September 2016.
Aberdeen also had Liverpool’s Welsh international keeper Danny Ward on loan during that season.
Michael Hector was on loan from Reading for six months in 2013 and went on to sign for Chelsea in a £4m deal.
Dons boss McInnes will focus on the players out of contract first and is closing in on securing Republic of Ireland international midfielder Stephen Gleeson. The 29-year-old is a free agent having left Ipswich.
McInnes has also targeted Hibs’ out-of-contract midfielder Dylan McGeouch.
Former Rangers striker Kenny Miller, 38, is also a transfer target having left Ibrox. McInnes met Miller in Florida recently.
The veteran striker is also being tracked by Hibs, Motherwell, St Mirren and Livingston.
Miller is expected to make a decision on his future next week.
McInnes said: “We’ve identified positions, we’ve identified key players within that and hopefully we can get all of our main targets.”