You Must Write Effective Links

Links refer to both content and navigation.  Effective link names are key to satisfying your customers.  Eyetracking studies show that links written in plain language are the most effective.  Plain language links are clearly written so that the user understands exactly where the link will take them.

  • Do not use the full name of a document or program as the link name.
  • Be as explicit as possible.  Too long is better than too short.
  • The names of the links must be the same as the name of the page to which it is linked.
  • Add a short description when necessary to clarify the link.
  • Make the link meaningful.  Do not use "click here" or "read more".

Remember, you may have users who trust screen readers.  Make sure your links are accessible to everyone.  Taking the time to write descriptive link text has the added benefit of improving your search engine optimization.


McGovern, Gerry, Killer Web Content: Make the Sale, Deliver the Service, Build the Brand (and other works), 2006, A&C Black.

First 2 words: a sign for the scanning eye, Nielsen Norman Group.

Do not use "Click here" as link text, W3C.


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