SEO Glossary: Anchor text - everything you need to know!

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In a nutshell: What is an anchor text?

An anchor text is a clickable text element that leads to a subpage or external website. It is also known as link text, anchor text or reference text. Such anchor texts are often conspicuously highlighted in color or underlined.

What exactly is an anchor text?

When users click on a hyperlink that leads to another web page or document, it is called an anchor text. It is highlighted and stands out from the rest of the text to encourage clicking. At best, an anchor text describes what the user can expect to find on the linked page or document.

Furthermore, there is the option to add an additional mouse-over effect. It ensures that the anchor text is visualized and thus stands out even better.

When the user moves the mouse over the link, the anchor text including the link is visually enlarged and highlighted. The rest of the text around it, however, remains unchanged, so that a clear link is recognizable.

Furthermore, the setting of anchor texts is an important part of the search engine optimization. They serve to show search engines the Google signals at the INTERNAL AND EXTERNAL LINKING to send.

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How does an anchor text work and how is it structured?

When the user clicks on your anchor text, he is taken to the linked target page. Both the URL of the target page and the corresponding anchor text are stored in the HTML code. Moreover, it does not matter whether the anchor text links to an internal or external page.

The goal should be to choose a meaningful text as an anchor text. It should fit thematically to the target page and give the user an incentive to the content.

How important are anchor texts in terms of SEO?

Search engines like Google permanently evaluate the linking of a website. The anchor text is included in order to evaluate the entire linking. For this reason, it is important to ensure that the linking is as natural as possible.

Google is constantly striving to recognize artificial link building and to distinguish it from natural link building. The best example is the Penguin update introduced in April 2012. This algorithm independently detects the excessive use or misuse of keywords, which is also known as keyword stuffing. keyword stuffing is known. Accordingly, the page is penalized, which has a negative impact on the ranking.

For this reason, the anchor texts should not be too general and should not contain general or simple keywords, for example. Instead, individual keywords or short sentences that describe the content of the target page in more detail are more effective.

Anchor texts also play an important role in terms of accessibility. If people are visually impaired or even blind, a good anchor text helps them to find their way around better. In this case, the text and anchor texts are read by a screen reader.

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Conclusion on the topic of anchor text

Not only the type of links, but also their description should be well thought out. Because anchor texts are an important part of search engine optimization. Internal and external links are an important ranking signal, which is why individual links should be described carefully and never too generally (keyword stuffing). Here, meaningful and professional anchor texts score points, so that users can easily find their way around.


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