As a digital marketer, your plate is likely full of day to day priorities, like managing social media posts and sending out email blasts, so there’s probably not a lot of time to pay attention to the minutia, like anchor text. After all, does it really matter what text you use to link to a page?
The answer, of course, is yes. Anchor text can be far more influential than many marketers realize, driving the ways in which Google makes information available. If you want to truly step your marketing up a notch, how you utilize anchor text can make a difference.
What Is Anchor Text?
Anchor text refers to the visible text and words in a hyperlink. For example, this sentence, in which “this sentence” serves as anchor text for our home page. Often appearing underlined and in blue, hyperlinks are a valuable part of website navigation, making it easy for customers to follow written cues to seek further information.
In HTML, anchor text is included in the code used to indicate a link. In the above example, the reference points to our website, “https://www.rivalmind.com/” while the anchor text is included in brackets within the <a> tags:
<a href=”https://www.rivalmind.com/”>this sentence</a>
In theory, any text can serve as anchor text, but when used effectively, the selected words or phrases should provide contextual clues about the link’s destination.
Why is Anchor Text Important?
Anchor text may seem like a simple function of linking, but the reality goes a lot deeper. The anchor text phrases and keywords you use to link to your pages, and the text used by others, all play into Google’s rankings.
Don’t see the logic? Just ask Adobe. For years, searching for nothing but the words “click here” would provide Google results to Adobe’s Acrobat downloads page, solely because so many websites and documents requiring Acrobat prompted site visitors to download the program with anchor text reading “click here to download Adobe Acrobat.” While Google has since remedied this and now provides more relevant results for “click here,” this should be a lesson to marketers: whatever you use in anchor text will indeed be a part of the associations Google’s algorithm builds with sites.
Anchor text isn’t a be all, end all of SEO, however. Google’s algorithms are exceedingly complex, and anchor text is just one small part of a larger whole.
When creating anchor text for your website, it’s important to keep these best practices in mind.
- Don’t force it. SEO should be organic, so don’t manipulate sentences to use specific keywords. Simply use natural, relevant phrases when it makes sense to do so.
- Avoid unnecessary repetition. Google sees hyperlinks that utilize the same keywords over and over as spam and may rank lower for it.
- Promote and distribute content to increase the likelihood that others will link back to your pages
- Create a blog to link to in order to share valuable, actionable information with site visitors
A strong search engine ranking is a must-have for all businesses, and every little element helps – and that includes anchor text. By keeping the connections between Google’s algorithms and hyperlinks in mind, you can improve your SEO strategy, one anchor text phrase at a time.
Want to be sure your approach to SEO succeeds? Get in touch with RivalMind today to learn more about what our marketing services can do for you.