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How to Select the Right Anchor Text for SEO

By: Sam | Last Updated: 2022-06-06T22:52:46

How to Select the Right Anchor Text for SEO

Anchor text selection is, without a doubt, the most crucial skill you can have when it comes to offsite SEO. Having the right anchor text distribution can make (or destroy) your search engine ranking. You’ll be at the top of page 1 if you do it correctly, even if you have fewer links than your competition.

This article highlights everything you should know about choosing the right anchor text for your content.

But first, let’s define what an anchor text is.

What is an anchor text?

Anchor text is a hyperlink text that connects a link on one page to another. Anchor texts can link to web pages or initiate downloads and links to documents such as PDFs or Google Drive files. So it’s important to choose anchor texts that not only resonate with your goal but also aid SEO. 

Here’s an illustration:

There are several SEO tools available for marketers.

The term “SEO tools” is the anchor text in that sentence. 

The anchor text you choose is important for several reasons:

1. It gives your readers a heads-up on what they can expect if they click the link. Anchor words must be incredibly relevant since they highlight the information on the other end of the link.

2. It helps Google crawlers to better understand your content. Google’s algorithms examine your anchor text choices to ensure that you aren’t spamming them and to determine what you are linking to in your content.

How To Choose The Right Anchor Text For SEO

Here are the best practices for choosing the right anchor text for SEO.

Use Relevant Words

The importance of ‘relevance’ cannot be overstated. While a large number of over-optimized exact match anchors can sound spammy, you also want your anchors to be relevant to the topic on the other side of the link.

Remember that Google uses anchors to figure out what web pages are about and how important they are, so it can rank them appropriately in keyword searches. You’ll want to choose anchors that make sense for the link and will help your readers have a great experience.

If you start using random words for anchors just for the sake of variety, you might end up with clickbait, which will annoy your readers.

Don’t Spam the Same Target Anchor Text Multiple Times

While anchor texts can be repeated, it’s best not to use the same anchor text more than once on a page.

For instance, if you’re writing guest posts about “dog food” with links to your website. It could be tempting to just use “dog food” as anchor text for every link. But that will seem unnatural to the search engine and may not increase your ranking.

Avoid repeating the same target anchor and mixing up your keywords by including filler terms. It not only looks more natural, but it also achieves a better outcome by using fewer links.

Choose an Appropriate Length

Keep the link text as short as feasible. Having more words in the anchor text does not imply that the linked website is more valuable. We’ve seen how Google might look at the words around you. 

Shorter anchor texts also enhance the reading experience for your readers.

Use the Persona’s Name

If your website has a persona linked with it, provide some links with the name of that persona as the anchor. It happens frequently and naturally. For instance, if you want to talk about Bill Gates, you can use “Bill Gates” as the anchor text. The same thing applies when you’re mentioning a specific organization or company. It gives the site a new level of “completeness.”

Use Your Keywords (Exact Match Anchor Texts)

When you employ anchor text language as the page’s targeted keywords, you’re using exact match anchor text. For example, to link to Ahref, you can use the anchor text “free SEO tool.”

Using exact matches multiple times on a single page nearly ensured your content will do well in the early days of SEO. However, they were overused to the point where Google punished them.

Using exact match anchor texts is still a smart idea. However, you should mix it up with various forms of anchor texts in general.

Allow the different types of anchor text to evolve spontaneously.

You can mix up different types of anchor texts in your content depending on the structure. The following anchor text distribution ratios are recommended:

• Branded Anchor Texts – 25% to 50% of all anchor text.

• Partial Anchor Texts – 25% to 50%.

• Other types of anchors account – for 10% to 25% (Generic anchor texts, naked anchor texts, etc.)

  • Branded anchor texts aid in the development of brand recognition. 
  • Partial anchor texts can help you establish topical authority and establish yourself as the “go-to” “web pages” for your desired keywords. 
  • Readers benefit from generic anchor texts because they provide a concrete call to action (“click here”, “download this”). 
  • Naked anchor texts are beneficial since Google is less likely to consider them spammy. They are frequently cited as sources to support claims made in blog posts.

These anchor text ratios aren’t set in stone, but they should keep you out of Google’s bad books.

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