Why You Shouldn’t Use “Click Here” Links on Your Website
Click here is a practice that should be abandoned for several reasons. It’s bad for SEO and it doesn’t help people understand what they will get if they click the link.
Most visitors don’t read content – they scan it. They want to quickly locate links and know where they’re going if they follow them.
It’s a throwback to the 1990s
’90s fashion trends like ripped jeans and baggy shirts are having a major moment in the style world thanks to rappers and streetwear brands that rehash the look. ’90s music is also having a huge moment, with everyone from rap artists to indie bands rehashing the sounds of that amazing era. From Des’ree’s “What Is Love” to 5ive’s “Got the Feelin”, ’90s music is just great.
Using the phrase “click here” in your links is a throwback to the 1990s when people still thought the Internet was new. This outdated language is unprofessional and can confuse visitors to your website.
Plus, “click here” doesn’t tell search engines what the page that contains the link is about. This can negatively impact your SEO as relevance is a key factor in Google’s ranking algorithm.
It’s bad for SEO
Search engines like Google put a lot of importance on the text of a link to determine relevancy. Links that use generic words like ‘click here’ or ‘go here’ don’t pass on as much relevancy signal to the page they go to as descriptive links, so it’s a good idea to always opt for the latter.
Plus, using “click here” for hyperlink text can make you seem old fashioned and out of touch with your website visitors. These days, people don’t just click on a link; they tap it with their finger or swipe it with their smartphone. In addition, using ‘click here’ can bog down your page with unnecessary words that will make it slower and harder for users to read. This is especially true for screen reader users, who need context to find the information they’re looking for. As such, it’s best to avoid this outdated practice altogether.
It’s not user-friendly
While some website visitors may not be bothered by “click here” links, they’re a huge problem for those with accessibility issues. These visitors often use screen-readers to read the content on websites, and the words “click here” provide no contextual information about what a link does or where it will lead.
Instead of relying on ambiguous link text, it is recommended that site editors use descriptive link titles for their links. These can be shortened to just a few words and can help users find the information they’re looking for more quickly.
Using “click here” in hyperlinks is also problematic because it shifts the focus to mouse navigation, while many users access websites on mobile devices and tablet computers that don’t have mice. For these users, keyboard navigation and voice recognition can be more effective ways to navigate a website. In fact, for some assistive technologies, clicking isn’t even an option. Naked links also don’t have an ALT attribute, which can be helpful for some assistive technology users.
It’s not relevant
If a link’s text doesn’t make sense or provide basic information about what it’s linking to it’s considered ambiguous. This can cause problems for accessibility, usability and SEO.
The phrase ‘click here’ does not convey any information about where the user will be sent when they activate the link. It also shifts the user’s attention from your content to their mouse.
In the early days of the web, this practice was defended on the basis that users wouldn’t know what to do without a hint. But since the development of eye-tracking technology, it’s become clear that “click here” provides no useful hint to users. Using a more relevant descriptive text to accompany the link is much better. This text will help search engines assess how relevant the link is. Alternatively, using keywords in the link text can also increase relevance. These are all advantages to avoiding the ambiguous “click here” text.