Anchor Text: Basics, Examples & Best Practices




Updated 2/3/2024

This quick guide explains the concept of anchor text, provides examples, and highlights the difference between anchor text and other SEO concepts.

anchor text featured image - anchor and plants

Anchor text is an important component for web usability and SEO. Good anchor text helps set user expectations for what they’ll find if they follow a link, and provides navigational benefits for search engine bots. This quick guide covers the basics.

What is Anchor Text?

Anchor text is the visible, clickable text in a hyperlink that users interact with to navigate from one webpage to another. It typically appears as underlined or differently styled text, often in a different color than the surrounding content.

The text should concisely summarize the destination page and or even entice the user to click the link for further information or related resources.

HTML Example

Here is an example within a hyperlink:

<a href="">Visit Example Website</a>

In this example, “Visit Example Website” is the anchor text.

When users click on this link, it will direct them to the website indicated by the URL within the href attribute.

Importance of Anchor Text

Optimizing this can benefit both users and search engines. Here are a few reasons why:

  1. Improved User Experience: Well-crafted anchor text gives users clear and meaningful information about the destination page. It sets accurate expectations and helps users navigate seamlessly through your website.
  2. Enhanced Accessibility: Descriptive text is valuable for individuals using assistive technologies like screen readers. It allows them to understand the purpose and context of the link without relying solely on visual cues.
  3. SEO and Search Engine Visibility: Search engines use anchor text as a ranking signal to understand the relevance and context of linked pages. By using descriptive copy that includes relevant keywords, you can improve the visibility of your content in search engine results.

Best Practices for Anchor Text

To optimize effectively, consider the following best practices:

1. Be Descriptive and Relevant

Use words that accurately represent the destination page. Use concise and informative language that gives users a clear idea of what they can expect when clicking the link.

2. Avoid Generic Text

Avoid using generic text like “click here” or “read more”, as it provides little context and doesn’t contribute to the user’s understanding of the linked content.

Instead, opt for descriptive text that reflects the topic or purpose of the destination page, such as “a study about flowers” or “funny cat video”.

3. Maintain Consistency

Ensure that the text aligns with the content it links to. Consistency between the text and the destination page enhances user trust and reinforces the relevance of the linked content.

4. Use Relevant Keywords

Incorporate relevant keywords naturally within your text, but avoid over-optimization or keyword stuffing. Balance keyword usage with meaningful and user-friendly text.

Be sure to check out Google’s best practices for links guide for more. No place better than the source.

Anchor text and hyperlink are closely related but represent different aspects of a hyperlink.

  • Anchor text refers to the visible, clickable words users see and interact with, guiding them to another webpage.
  • A hyperlink encompasses the entire clickable area, including the anchor text and any surrounding HTML tags.

A hyperlink consists of both the anchor text and the destination URL defined within the href attribute. The anchor text gives users a preview of the destination, while the hyperlink connects the current webpage to the target page.

Bottom Line

Optimizing anchor text is crucial for enhancing user experience, improving accessibility, and boosting search engine visibility.

By following the best practices outlined in this guide, you can create descriptive and relevant links that guide users effectively and support your website’s SEO efforts. Remember, the primary goal is to provide valuable information to users while maintaining a balance between user experience and search engine optimization. ?


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