Anchor text has a big impact on SEO because search engines use it to understand context and relevance.
This article on anchor text and SEO will help you understand what you should and shouldn’t do when it comes to using anchor text on your website.
What Is Anchor Text?
Anchor text refers to the clickable words that appear in a hyperlink linking one web page to another web page.
Anchor text has traditionally been blue and underlined but this is changing now. Websites today often use an anchor text color that fits with their branding.
Here’s an example of anchor text:
The HTML code that produces anchor text is quite simple and looks like this:
Why Anchor Text Is Important For SEO
So why is anchor text so important for SEO?
Firstly, anchor text is important for your human visitors. It tells them what to expect on the linked page. Before clicking on a link in a sentence, people look closely at the anchor text to see if it’s a link that’s worth clicking on.
Secondly, Google uses anchor text to understand context and relevance. In fact, Google regards anchor text as a better and more objective indication about the content of a page than the page’s own meta tags.
This is because anchor text from other websites is objective information about the content of a page.
“The text of links is treated in a special way in our search engine. Most search engines associate the text of a link with the page that the link is on. In addition, we associate it with the page the link points to.”
In other words, anchor text gives Google important contextual information about the destination page.
This was reaffirmed in 2017 by Google’s John Mueller in a couple of tweets:
Yes, but anchor text (and image alt text) helps us quite a bit in understanding context, so I wouldn’t leave it out if you can avoid it.
— 🐄 John 🐄 (@JohnMu) May 15, 2017