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The linked text, usually designated as anchor text (or anchortext), should describe the linked resource short and to the point.
The anchor text should contain the most distinct keyword(s) applicable to the target document. Ensure the visitor gets an idea of the linked page's content even if s/he reads only the highlighted anchor text. If the link is a call for action, link complete sentences. That's very important, because most surfers are scanning nowadays, that is they often don't read the words before and after the text link. However, always try to define the links context with the surrounding text. A well formatted text link looks like:
"Hierarchical site maps are a must for every Web site. Especially on large sites some users rely on this navigation element, and search engine crawlers make use of sitemaps to crawl even pages deeply buried in the link hierarchy. To make use of site maps download the free SEO tool Simple Sitemaps now and generate your HTML site map in no time. Simple Sitemaps even adds a RSS site feed and a Google XML sitemap to your Web site!"
... <a href="http://www.example.com/article.htm?node=154" title="Get THREE Free Site Maps for Your Web Site!
When it comes to search engine rankings, the anchor text and the surrounding text as well have great impact on both the source page's authority status and the target page's keyword relevancy. Always make use of the title attribute to describe the link's target.
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