The relevance of anchor text in SEO

Anchor text has been an important part of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for quite some time now. It is the text that is hyperlinked to a page when someone wants to link to it. Anchor text not only gives context to the linked page but also plays a significant role in determining its search engine ranking. In this article, we will discuss the relevance of anchor text in SEO and its different types.

Anchor Text: The Basics

In simple terms, anchor text is the text that appears as a clickable hyperlink on a website page. It’s what people see and click to navigate to another webpage. The text is also essential for search engines to know what the linked page is about. Search engines use algorithms to understand the context of the linked pages, and anchor text helps them do that by giving them clues about what the linked pages are about.

Why is Anchor Text Relevance Important?

Anchor text helps search engines crawl and index web pages by understanding the content of a linked page. It is also essential to increase the visibility of the linked page in search engine rankings. Having relevant and well-structured anchor text can help increase the domain authority of a website and improve its search engine ranking position (SERP).

For example, a website that sells gardening tools might have better search engine rankings for the keyword “gardening tools” if many other sites with related industry link to them using that keyword as anchor text. With each link and anchor text used, the search engine algorithm becomes more confident that the targeted page pertains to the specific keyword. The result? The page is likely to appear on the top of the search engine results when a user enters a relevant keyword.

Different Types of Anchor Text

There are different types of anchor text used to link pages on websites, and each has its relevance factor. The primary types of anchor text include:

1. Exact Match Anchor Text: This type of anchor text precisely matches the keyword or phrase of the linked page. For example, if you are linking to “gardening tools,” your exact match text will be “gardening tools.” It was an essential ingredient of SEO ranking strategies in the past, but presently it’s overuse can lead to Google penalizing your website.

2. Partial Match Anchor Text: This type of anchor text includes partial matching of the targeted keyword or phrase, like “gardening tools that cut.” These anchor texts can help establish a more natural backlink profile by avoiding Google’s over-optimization penalty.

3. Branded Anchor Text: It includes the brand name of the targeted website, such as “XYZ – Gardening Tools.” It is helpful in improving brand recognition and also helps to establish brand associations connecting that term with the company.

4. Naked URL Anchor Text: It is when the website link is used as anchor text. It is typically used when linking to the homepage and can be helpful in improving brand awareness.

5. Generic Anchor Text: This type of anchor text uses general text like “click here” or “learn more.” It imbues versatility and a diverse backlink profile on the website.


Q. What is the ideal percentage of exact-match anchor text to use?
It depends on the targeted keyword or phrase, the industry, and the competition to arrive at a good number. However, a safe assumption would be no more than 5-10%. It’s important to strike a balance between an understandable user experience and avoiding Google penalties.

Q. What is the best practice when using anchor text?
It’s crucial to keep anchor text relevant to the content being linked, provide a helpful user experience, and even maintain brand recognition.

Q. Can I use the same anchor text for all inbound links?
No. Having the same anchor text for all links can make it seem like keyword stuffing which can negatively influence a website’s SEO ranking.


Anchor text plays an important role in establishing and boosting the authority of a website. However, it’s important to use it with caution since over-optimization can lead to penalization by search engines. It’s crucial to continually adapt to new SEO changes and remain open to ongoing maintenance and updates. Overall, quality content is crucial, and relevant anchor text helps in establishing an effective and authentic SEO strategy that can improve a website’s search engine ranking position.

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