You see it everywhere. Click here to download this or open that. So many people use it that you probably haven’t given it much thought. After all, it says “Click here”, and that’s exactly what you want your website visitor to do. And, if everyone’s doing it, what’s the problem? We’ll explain…
In previous articles, we’ve discussed how website visitors usually scan your site rather than read word for word. Assuming your links have been styled properly, they should jump out to anyone scanning your page. So, which of the following gets your attention with a passing glance: Click here to see our Website Portfolio. We have examples of websites we’ve designed in our Website Portfolio. At even the quickest glance, the second option tells the visitor that there’s a link, and where it goes. “Click here” can be easily dismissed because it’s meaningless without additional context. Also, you may want to consider only linking nouns, as verbs can be vague regarding what to expect from the link.
Search engines factor the strength of your links into their algorithm when determining your placement in their search results. The words “Click here” provide no additional context as to what your link does. Using the above example, linking the words Website Portfolio tells the search engine exactly what you’re linking to, helping it estimate link relevance.
When the Internet was in its infancy, some argued that “Click here” was essential because most people couldn’t recognize links or wouldn’t know that clicking a link performed an action. But, the World Wide Web is over a quarter of a century old now, and website visitors know what a link is and how to use a mouse. Using “Click here” may give the impression that your site is out-dated. Or, worse yet, it may come across as patronizing.
And if you’re using “Click here” because your links aren’t distinguishable from other text, you should remedy that instead of writing bad copy to compensate.
In the end, a good link should be able to say “Click here” without actually using the words. If you have any questions, or need help re-writing your “Click heres”, please don’t hesitate to contact us.