Sunday Morning SEO: What is Anchor Text and Why is It Important?

Filed as Guides on May 17, 2009 11:38 am

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In a survey of 37 search experts, the 2nd highest SEO factor was the anchor text of links from other sites.  However, many webmasters who want to rank better on the search engines don’t know what anchor text is.  Fortunately, anchor text is an easy concept to understand.  In this post and next week’s post, we’ll look at what anchor text is and how to use it well for your blog. 

Simply put, anchor text is the text in a link.  Here’s an example.  The anchor text of the following link is the best blog in the world:

the best blog in the world

Anchor text is important because search engines use it in their algorithms to determine their rankings.  Here’s how it works.  Search engines are constantly checking the anchor text of your site.  Each time you get a link from another site, the search engines will note the anchor text of that link.  With each instance a word or phrase shows up in your anchor text, your chances improve for increasing your ranking for that word or phrase.

For example, let’s say you have a blog about movie reviews.  If you build a lot of links with the words movie and reviews in your anchor text, you’ll improve your chances of increasing your ranking for movie reviews.

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  1. By Sapien posted on May 18, 2009 at 2:58 pm
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    Anchor text is a brief description of the site you are linking to. It is important to mix it up with synonyms and related words in a big link building campaign.

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  2. By arielz posted on May 18, 2009 at 4:02 pm
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    i agree with you, good anchor text will increase visitors from search engine. Now, I just wondering, is it important to add “tittle” in anchor text? what do you think? please help me, i am a newbie here

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    • By Lorelle VanFossen posted on May 20, 2009 at 1:53 am
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      I’m sure you’ll get a reply from the author but I wanted to chime in here.

      It is critical to add the “title” selector/attribute to anchor links for web accessibility standards. More specifically, if you are have link to “this article” in the anchor text, the title must contain the descriptive “title” of the link such as “Blog Herald – Sunday Morning SEO article on Anchor Text.” It must help the disabled, and any one who hovers their mouse over the link, to know where the link will take them when clicked.

      Thing of it as a good set of directions. While someone might tell you turn right, go one blog and turn left a the white mailbox, it is much more helpful to know that you will turn right on Green Street and go one block and turn left on Red Street. Think of the latter as the “title” of the link and the anchor text as the former vague directions. :D

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  3. By Dee Barizo posted on May 24, 2009 at 11:25 pm
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    @Sapien

    Good point. I will talk about mixing it up in the next post.

    @Lorelle

    Thanks for the great explanation especially the directions analogy. Very helpful. I often forget to use the title attribute but your analogy will help me remember to use it.

    @arielz

    See Lorelle’s comment :)

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  4. By arielz posted on May 24, 2009 at 11:42 pm
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    @lorelle: thanks for great explanation, i’m surely clear now

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  5. By Alex posted on May 31, 2009 at 8:23 pm
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    Great tips thanks for sharing.
    Alex

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  6. By Buy Text Links posted on June 24, 2009 at 7:07 pm
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    Good point, drop me an email and I will be happy to help.

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  7. By sachin sharma posted on June 29, 2009 at 6:40 pm
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    i really liked this post, enought information about anchor text.
    keep it up dear.

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  8. By seo services usa posted on July 14, 2009 at 4:20 pm
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    very informative post about using anchor text to get high rank in search engine for a specific keyword thanks for sharing though.

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  9. By candry johnson posted on August 22, 2009 at 2:30 pm
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    NIce Article dear,

    Your information is so beneficial for seo i will use all this thing. Can you let me know how many anchor i can use for each keyword which not shown as spamming.

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  10. By Lance posted on September 15, 2009 at 11:18 am
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    Hi…what is the keyword index percentage necessary for an article to be considered properly SEO’d. Once the amount of keywords is determined, are the anchor tags on these keywords the kws themselves or can it be something else related? Article writing has to be perfected or it will be a waste of time to write 300-500 without any purpose or ranking.

    “Empire State of Mind”

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  11. By Sean Durrant posted on October 12, 2009 at 2:13 pm
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    Useful info Dee and I found it on the first page of Google.

    When you’re using anchor text, which site gets the most benefit? I presume it’s the site that you are linking to?

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  12. By ajay jones posted on October 29, 2009 at 2:00 am
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    very useful infomation i found that pretty usefull as i had been looking for over a hour tto find how to do quality anchor texts i even found some infomation on a ld geocities page that was half-a-website since yahoo has unplugged the whole geocities,

    can i ask if you are linking to a high authority page does that mean that page rank gets passed over from anchor texts, im really new to all this linking to new pages

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  13. By http://seoclass.cz.cc/ posted on August 9, 2010 at 6:16 am
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    Waoo great post thanks admin for this post. it may helpful for every new blogger who want too learn Seo. thanks again, I invite you to review my blog and comments on my blog.
    http://seoclass.cz.cc/
    thanks

    Reply

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