By: Sarah Nasir

Anchor text is the hyperlinked text that you click on. Anchor texts are significant for both external and internal links. There is not much that you can do about the anchor texts from inbound links as you have no control over how others link to your site. However, you do have significant control over how pages are interlinked within your site. Described below are 8 types of anchor text that may be optimized as part of your SEO strategy to interlink between your site or as outbound links.

1. Exact match

Anchor text that is an exact match is text that fits right into the flow of content. It is when the keyword used is definitely representative of the page that it links to. For example, “travel tips” linking to a blog with content about travel tips. Google values this as the content with the anchor text and the linked content is eminently relevant.

2. Partial match

Partial match anchor text also uses keywords related to the linked content. However, there are usually some add-ons or the text has been modified to fit into the flow of content on the linking site. For example “tips for traveling” or “things to do when traveling” are variations of anchor text that link to a page with content regarding travel tips. Because the content is relevant and the keyword is present, Google also values this anchor text.

3. Branded

The anchor text is the brand name. Google considers this beneficial because it increases brand visibility and the brand name hints at what the content is about. For example, using “Nike” as anchor text makes it evident that the content is about shoes or other sporting apparel. This should be used when the brand name is known.

4. Generic

This type of anchor text contains generic words or phrases. These are usually calls to action such as “Click Here” or “Sign Up.” This type of anchor text demands the audience’s attention and usually does not fit into the flow of the content. It is important to note that this type of anchor text does not indicate the content of the link to Google’s search engine bots.

5. LSI Keywords

LSI or Latent Semantic Indexing Keywords are keywords that are thematically related. LSI keywords are automatically associated with each other by Google. You may find LSI keywords by looking at Google’s autocomplete queries and related searches. To avoid using the same keywords as anchor text repeatedly, make a list of LSI keywords and use those instead.

6. Article titles

This is anchor text with the title of the article that the anchor text links to. It may be difficult to fit this anchor text into the flow of your content. However, this does provide both users and bots with an idea of what the linked content is about. If it provides an idea of how the linked content is relevant to the content that links to it, this type of anchor text is valuable for Google rankings.

7. Naked URLs

This is when a URL is used as an anchor text. URL anchor texts do not provide information on what the link is about. If this type of URL is to be used, it is better to use a short and concise URL rather than a long one.

8. Images

When an image is used as a link, instead of words or phrases, the image’s alt tag is considered its anchor text. The alt tag is read by engine crawlers. If an image is linked, it is important to fill in the alt tag.

To optimize anchor texts as an SEO strategy, keeping anchor texts and links relevant, quality-oriented and natural is essential. Try to mix up the aforementioned types of anchor texts in your content. Avoid sticking to only one type of anchor text as it indicates that the site is spammy. Also, it is crucial to use internal and outbound links only when content is relevant or helps the user. Do not spam your site with anchor text links.

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