Choosing anchor text when creating links back to your website matters these days in a very big way. In fact, choosing the correct anchor text is at least as important as creating backlinks to begin with. Here’s what you need to know:
What is Anchor Text?
Put simply, anchor text is the text which has a link attached to it. So for example, if I were to create a link back to my personal finance blog, I could say look here. Or I could say, check out this great site for questions about money problems. Both of these are anchor text and they both lead to the same place, however one is better than the other.
Descriptive Anchor Text Gets Clicked
First of all, descriptive anchor text will get clicked when people see it. It’s simple logic. Saying “click here” doesn’t get anyone particularly excited to read what you happen to have to say. Saying “here’s the real reason why get rich quick schemes don’t work” does get people excited and makes them want to see what’s behind the link.
Descriptive Text Also Matters to Google
There was a time when simply getting a backlink was enough for Google. Not anymore. These days, Google checks on the quality of links. They want to know who is linking to you, where they are linking to you (in the body of the text of a website is more valuable than in the footer or comments for example) and how they link to you.
That last item is really what anchor text is all about. If they are using keywords to link back to you, then those keywords will get associated with your website and you gain rank for those specific keywords. This means more traffic not just from the link but also from Google sending people your way.
How to Pick The Right Anchor Text
Okay, so you know now that you need to pick appropriate anchor text. But how do you pick the right kind of anchor text for your needs? The answer is fairly simple – you do plenty of research. Basically, picking anchor text is a matter of looking at which keywords will bring the most visitors to your site without being saturated.
Therefore, you should use research tools such as Google’s own Adwords Keyword tool to figure out which anchor text will do you the most good when put in a link with that text.
What if You Don’t Control the Anchor Text?
Look, if you get a link from another website and you didn’t choose the anchor text, you could ask them to change it, but in my opinion, it’s better to simply leave it be. After all, these people were nice enough to link back to your website or blog and there’s no reason to bother them and sound greedy by saying “could you please change the anchor text to make it better for me?”