The Insider’s Guide to Anchor Text: History, Types & Impact on Rankings

We all have seen the blue text in articles or blogs pointing to which the shape of your cursor changes (Pointing Finger). The text on which links are applied that takes you to another page is known as Anchor Text, link label or link title.

Anchor Texts can be Good or Bad based on which words or phrases you choose to make the ‘Anchor Text’ sound relevant to the link applied. 

Lousy Anchor Text: Click here!

Good Anchor Text: Learn xyz, What is xyz. Click here to learn about xyz. 

How Many Types Of Anchor Texts Are There? 

There are primarily seven types of Anchor Texts: 

Exact MatchThe keyword of a linked page is used for anchor text in exact match anchor text. E.g. Website Development
Phrase MatchPhrase Matched Anchor Text contains the entire keyword phrase for which you want to rank. E.g. Toronto-based web design company
Partial Match Partial Match refers to the anchor text, including all the words that frame a query, but they are not exact phrases. E.g. SEO Enterprises Services Toronto
BrandedWhen the anchor text shows the name of the Brand. E.g. Kinex Media 
Naked URLRaw anchor text is known as a naked URL. E.g.
RandomWhen the anchor text is unspecific or generic, which does not include any target keyword is known as Random anchor text. E.g. Click here
Image Links When the anchor texts are merely an alt text of the image. E.g.

Does Anchor Text Impact Rankings?

Yes, for sure!

Googlebot uses the anchor text to understand the context of the link you have applied to it. 

For example: If my anchor text is ‘Vegan Cosmetics’, Bot will understand that the page I am trying to link is about Vegan Cosmetics. 

On the other hand, if there comes out any issue with the relevance like: You have provided a link for ‘Vegan Cosmetics’, but that link takes you to ‘Healthy Juices’ Page, Google will drop your ranking. 

When Sergey Brin & Larry Page Had Blind Faith In Anchor Texts 

There was a time, two decades ago, when Google trusted the accuracy of Anchor Texts blindly. Sadly, Google’s heart broke. People tried to manipulate Google by applying irrelevant links to the anchor texts. The result was that the bounce rate of the high-ranking websites skyrocketed. Google couldn’t bear it anymore and thought of a way to sort it out. It introduced the Penguin algorithm in 2012. To our surprise, no sooner did the algorithm come to effect, the page ranking on #1 position downfell to #20. 

Can Keyword Anchor Texts Be Dangerous? 

Yes, they indeed are!

Since Malpractices on Google have been increasing day by day, Google is becoming even more conscious of finding out such activities. Google’s algorithm considers it a manipulative practice if you are targeting keywords as anchor texts.

For example, if you are selling ‘Oats and Nuts’, you shouldn’t only include ‘Oats and Nuts’ in your anchor text. By doing that, you are calling yourself for a penalty. 

What Are The Natural Anchor Texts? 

There are two types of the ‘Natural Anchor Texts’: 

Non Commercial KeywordsBrand Anchor Text
Click HereMore InfoSee MoreVisit this website BrandName BrandName.comVisit

Which Anchor Texts Should Be Used? 

Partial Keyword Anchor Texts

Usage of Exact Match Keywords is always risky. So we must use Partial Keyword Anchor Texts. Let me help you to differentiate about them with suitable examples: 

Example 1: Example 2:
Exact Match Keyword Anchor Text Vegan cosmetics have a lot to offer, starting with that makeup and skincare are far from their outdated stereotypes. You can Buy Vegan Cosmetics from several websites. Partial Match Keyword Anchor TextsIt is impossible to find a company that does not offer vegan options at this point, and reputable companies should clearly state what their vegan-friendly options are. If you want to know what we offer – please click here. 

Co-Citation Keywords 

When we talk about the co-citation keywords, then we are talking about the ones which are placed near the anchor texts like: 

Example 3: I found this website that offers cost effective vegan cosmetics. 

Example 4: If you want to make your skin look healthy and glowy, you should use vegan cosmetics. 

Here [‘this website’ & ‘healthy and glowy’] are anchor texts, but [‘vegan cosmetics’] is the actual keyword that needs to be targeted. 

How Can We Increase The Visitors Of Our Site By Not Including The Exact Match Keywords? 

Search engines are far better at determining what your website’s content is about, so it’s much better to include your keyword anchors naturally within the website’s content flow rather than having them in your link profile.

Follow these practices if you want to target your keyword ethically: 

  • Publish Content based on the keyword theme. For example: Consider having a Page ‘About Vegan Cosmetics’, ‘How can you buy Vegan Cosmetics?’ or ‘How can you avail discounts on Vegan Cosmetics?’ 
  • Make sure that the keyword embedment should not be forceful. Instead, it should look natural. 
  • The URL of the page must include the main keyword. 
  • You can gain the additional benefit of internal linking. Link ‘Vegan Cosmetics’ Page to the other pages of the site like: 
    • What are the predominant advantages of using Vegan Cosmetics? 
    • Which prominent ingredients are used in the making of Vegan Cosmetics? 

My Say!

Keyword Embedding & Anchor Texts have conflicting relations. There are specific scenarios in which this combination comes out to be fruitful. Usage of Exact Match Keywords may make you a victim of Google’s Penalty. But if you use Partial Keywords or Co-citation keywords combined with onsite optimization, your website will experience a good amount of traffic & profits.