Anchor text

Anastasia Kurmakaeva

Written by Anastasia Kurmakaeva

The anchor text is the text that functions as a hyperlink or link from a content in which it is included, to another content where the browser will direct the user if he clicks on it.

A standard HTML link can display this code:

Code of an HTML link where the anchor text is visible

In this HTML link example:

  • <a> < /a >: are the tags indicating the opening and closing of a link.
  • href: “”: is the destination URL to which the user would be directed if he/she clicks on the link.
  • target=”_blank”: indicates whether the link should be opened in the same browser window or tab, or in a new one (as in the example shown in the image).
  • title=”Click to go to landing page”: is a text included for accessibility purposes. This text is displayed as a hint or tooltip to the user when he/she hovers over the link. It does not fulfill an SEO objective.
  • Anchor text: or anchor text. This is the text that the user sees as a link and must click on if he/she wants to visit the page to which the link points.

But what is the impact of anchor text as far as SEO is concerned?

If you are reading this page, you have probably already read many discrepancies of opinions and guides regarding anchor texts and their correct use for the benefit of a website’s SEO. We usually find ourselves between these two positions:

  • Always build keyword-enriched anchor text links.
  • Never use keywords, use neutral terms in the wording of your anchor text.

Which of the two pieces of advice should we heed? The reality lies somewhere in the middle between the two, and that is that moderation and common sense are the key, as well as the type of links we are going to build: internal or external.

Depending on the type of link, the anchor text may have one function or another.

External links

Backlinks or inbound links, i.e. those we receive from external sources to our website, feed the popularity of the portal. They can do so negatively or positively, and this will depend on several factors, among which is the anchor text used by the website that gives us the link. If Google – the king among search engines – detects a large number of links with anchor text well nurtured with keywords to your site, will be alarmed and may penalize you, especially if the content from which you are linked does not share commonalities with your site’s page, or is a suspicious domain. Each case is different and there is no one-size-fits-all recommendation.

In addition, many SEO consultants worry about this type of links, completely forgetting about the links that…

Internal links

Internal interlinking is also fundamental for positioning, and the use of the correct anchor text also comes into play in this type of links. It allows us to correctly distribute the positioning power of our website among the different sections: categories, subcategories, etc.

Here it is very important that the anchor text matches the content you are linking to as closely as possible, which will also help Google determine how relevant the landing page is.

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Anastasia Kurmakaeva
Anastasia Kurmakaeva
Former SEO consultant and translator at Human Level. She is a specialist in translation and SEO, with a special focus on the Yandex search engine. She is fluent in Russian, Spanish and English, being fully bilingual in the first two.

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