Contextual Connections

Just a quick post to emphasise the importance of using contextual links for Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) purposes.

This is when the reader sees a relevant word or phrase which is a link going to a particular webpage. The URL for this link isn’t the same as the word or phrase that is visible, the information or instructions behind what the reader sees takes the link to its destination.

For example, visit my website to find out more about Alice Designs isn’t my website’s URL, nor is it immediately visible, but if you were to mouse over that link above and look below where that URL is shown at the bottom of your web browser, you would see it. And if you were to click on it, it would go to my website.

Contextual links are excellent food for spiders (SEO bots), especially if the link phrase itself is stuffed full of keywords or relevant words to the URL in question. If the information in front of them matches up with what they find at the other end of the link, then that earns you extra brownie-points.

You can also use contextual links to help towards disguising your email link against spammers. OK, this won’t necessarily deter the sophisticated versions, but usually simple bots won’t recognise a cleverly constructed contextual link as a email address, thus reducing your susceptability for spam. Something like Want to know more? Then ask me a question doesn’t gjve the impression of being an email link to an ordinary spider because it doesn’t contain the ‘@’.

And for goodness sake avoid using ‘click here’ everywhere, this is a totally useless form of contextual link. Be far more imaginative!

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