All There Is to Know About Anchor Texts. No Joke.

A huge attention in Google algorithms is given to internal and external linking patterns of a website. In this field an even greater impact upon rankings and relevancy has the anchor texts that cloth the links.

The rule of thumb of anchor text is to build it with keywords and phrases you want your webpages to rank for.

Whenever possible, include in the anchor text keywords that exist in the page’s title. In best scenarios, you’ll want to use the title’s exact match as a link.

If you cannot always use descriptive anchor text, or just look to give your linking structure a more natural feel, a good alternative for building relevancy is to include link titles within the code.

<a href=”contentpage.htm” title=”descriptive text”>Click here</a>

Search engines won’t put as much weight on this format as with the classical anchor text format, but is better than nothing.

Text vs. image for a link

Anchor text is better then anchor image for a link. The reason why is because search engines can’t recognize and index images. The way around this issue is to edit each image you use with ALT tags.

<img src=”” alt=”anothercontentpage”>

The drawback if you don’t use ALT tags:

If the only link back to your homepage is through an image, or logo with no descriptive ALT tag attached to it, then rest of your webpages can’t build relevancy (vote) for what the homepage is all about. The symptom in this case is internal pages outranking the homepage.

If the site’s navigation uses image links with no descriptive tags, this dilutes relevancy for each category page. You can fix it by embedding descriptive anchor text on the footer of each category page.

Avoid spamming your ALT tags because when spotted by human quality raters, this behavior could get your website de-indexed.

Another efficient use for anchor text is on longer pages, as with long structured sales letters, walkthroughs or the classical FAQ pages.

Relative vs Absolute links

So, which is better? <a href=”page/”>Anchor Text</a> or

<a href=”http://www.yourdomain/page.html”>Anchor Text</a>

The truth of the matter is that search engines convert each relative link to their absolute locations before assigning the page with an ID number.

The sole problem with the search engine is canonical URL, namely if a search engine indexes both the www and non-www version of your site, then relative links will generate duplicate content issues.

Other problems with relative links appear when content scrapers and site hijackers visit your site:

1. When content is being stolen from your domain, it is better to have absolute URLs in place then relative (irrelevant) URLs so that you could benefit from some inbound links.

2. When hijacking your website – making the search engines think your site exists at their URL- is better to have absolute URL in your content, so that he can’t steal as many webpages as he could if you had used relative linking.

As you can clearly see, I’m pro using absolute URLs when internally linking your webpages.

Positioning anchor texts

By far the best way to use anchor text is within the text body. Not only this better describes your website’s content but it also adds a sense of interactivity that enhances the way visitors perceive your site.

Being able to choose their own path to follow builds a feeling of control for each visitor which in return increases the the amount of time spent on your site. As a rule, article marketing falls short to satisfying this requirement since anchor text are only available in author’s byline. Nevertheless you should maximize the liking opportunity to the fullest in terms of diversifying the anchor text used, especially when articles are submitted with an article submission software.

Get in the habit of periodically checking your site for broken links. Nothing is more unpleasant when you find the next best piece of info you’re looking for and the link pointing to it renders a white dead screen. Linking structure is also an evaluation criteria for top submission directories.

There is a free, good tool to use called Xenu Link Sleuth for finding broken links. It also can be used with your potential linking partners websites as a way to knock on their door ;) .

All of your pages must be interlinked with each other. Having dangling links in your linking structure will prevent link juice from flowing naturally throughout your system, thus missing out on untapped, easy-to-get authority.

Please, let me know if this post was useful with a comment in the area below. Apreciate it! :)

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