In the world of SEO, where the rules are always changing and the opinions always varying, it can be difficult to know where you should put your efforts. But if there is one thing we know for sure, even after years of Google algorithm updates, it’s this: link building is not going away any time soon.
There are many ways to go about building back links, as you will see in future posts. But however you choose to go about it, there is one critical factor to keep in mind: anchor text.
Even those who supposedly specialize in SEO sometimes do this wrong. Sometimes, novices seem to have a better understanding of how you should structure your anchor text.
First of all, I will quickly explain what the anchor text is, for those of you who are unaware. It is the text used to “anchor” a link, like this: Accountable Communications. In this case, the words “case studies” are the anchor text.
Now let me explain why so many people are doing anchor texts wrong.
Contrary to popular belief, using keywords as your anchor text can actually have a negative impact on your SEO. At the very least it does absolutely nothing at all, but it definitely won’t help your website rank any faster or better. That’s because keyword stuffing has long been penalized by Google (as I’m sure we are all aware), and that doesn’t change with anchor text.
On Average, 16% Of Anchor Texts Are Exact Matches
What does this mean?
That if you have 100 links, 16 of them are probably anchored with the keyword you are trying to rank for. This number is way too high, and in fact should be even less than 1%.
So What Should You Use For an Anchor For SEO Purposes?
We’ve found that some of the most effective anchors are branded anchor texts or plain URLs. By leaving out the keywords, you may not be using those links to rank for a specific keyword, but you will be building brand awareness. Google loves this, and will share the love by listening more to the keywords that you have on your page titles and within your body text.
Another way you can make sure that you anchor text is properly optimized is to look at how your competitors are anchoring their back links. Contact ACI to get a full report on what your high-ranking competitors are doing to get there.