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10 March 2016

Web Design

Ahoy Anchor Text

Ahoy Anchor Text

Whether we are referring to blog/article production for SEO purposes, or to webpage content, choosing the correct anchor text is essential.

What is anchor text?

Anchor text is the text you might to use as a link to a webpage and is often described as “clickable text”.

When can anchor text be used?

Anchor text can be used in a variety of situations.

If you are writing content for your webpages (or someone else is writing content for your webpages) you can have anchor text that links to pages that are internal on your website.

If you are writing blog and/or article content, you can use anchor text to link either to other sites, or again pages of your own site that may be relevant. If doing the former, be careful that the website is reputable, as if they have links with a “bad reputation” with Google, those could affect the perceived reliability of your website too.

Examples of anchor text

An example of anchor text is “contact us” or “visit the xyz site” or just keywords that are relevant to the page you are linking to e.g. “fruit” with a link to a fruit related website in the correct context of what you are writing about. For instance:

“There are many different types of fruit, and xyz stocks and sells home-grown and organic grapes, which complement our cheeses excellently.”

In the passage above, you can use “xyz” as anchor text for the “xyz” website, “grapes” as anchor text to the grapes page of the xyz website and “our cheeses” as a hyperlink to the cheese page.

Why is this text important?

Well, simply put, this text is important because Google uses this anchor text to see what you are linking to. In other words, the anchor text initially communicates what the link might be about. This is why it is important to have tidy, user-friendly URLs as discussed in the previous blog.

Good vs bad anchor text

How do you choose what good anchor text might be? Well, for starters, you need to avoid generalising and using overly vague text “click here” and “contact us” is just not good enough as it tells Google nothing about where the page leads to. It would be a lot better to put something to the effect of “visit xyz” instead of “click here” or “contact xyz” instead of “contact us”.

Try not to use the same URL for all for all of the anchor texts. Instead, vary what you are talking about and use different links.

Try to limit the anchor text length to a word or short phrase. Making sentences or paragraphs into anchor text just isn’t right.

Notice how when you make text into anchor text, it underlines it? This is so that the reader can easily tell the difference between the normal text and the text that is going to take them to a certain page. Keep the anchor text looking different to the normal text so people can tell the difference between the 2. There is no point reformatting the anchor text to look the same as all the other text, as users will not know which words are taking them to a different webpage.

Finally, don’t create anchor text just for the sake of it. Keyword stuffing (putting in too many keywords) and then using them as anchor text to the same page (or even different pages) will not go down well with Google, and neither will creating links you don’t need. Remember, Google is a robot, it’s not stupid, so avoiding these two things will stop you getting penalized.

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