(Britt) I am not clear about how keywords and links are supposed to look like on a website or blog.
So far, I have italicized keywords and I think this is how search engines identify them. URLs and phrases I have connected to their links, but they way they come out on the blog is not highlighted and not underlined. I wonder if I should bold them and also underline them with the underline editor.
Your intention is RIGHT (at least with backlinks) but your execution may be a problem. Let me know explain.
First, anchor text is extremely important when it comes to SEO (search engine optimization). This is the highlighted text that people can click on. It is cool because it can hide an ugly URL, but more importantly, it provides search engines (like Google) a correlation between keywords (words that people may search for in a search engine) and the landing page (the page that your link is pointing to). Using keyword-rich, relevant anchor text is KEY to ranking high in Google search.
Quick Note: Italics may add a little bit to the on-page SEO, but really doesn’t do very much for optimization!
Now to your question. My first suggestion is to ALWAYS use a WYSIWYG editor to do your writing, if you are not well hearsed in HTML. These editors allow you to select a word (or more), highlight them, and then assign a destination web page (this button usually looking like a chain “link”).
In general HTML, links are created using anchor tags:
<a href=”http://yourdestinationsite.com”>Your Anchor Text</a>
The structure (above) uses an href parameter which you assign to your destination URL. Then, you place the anchor text. Then you close it with an closing tag: </a>. Again, this is not meant to be an HTML lesson, but a quick description on what hyperlinks look like in raw HTML.
Now your other question concerns: “Should I underline it?”
No need to. Yes, the “standard convention” to hyperlinks is that they are usually underlined and blue. But there are simple ways to change the look of these links using Cascaded Style Sheets (CSS). Many designed themes, for example, may change this for aethetic reasons. They can very easily remove the underline and/or change the color.
This doesn’t change the link at all!
It simply changes how we see it. From an SEO stand-point, it doesn’t hurt a bit. From a conversion stand-point, maybe…it depends on whether this new style identifies that text as a link (like a different color shade, a background color, etc.). You decide whether it looks like a link or not.
And if you are not sure if it is a link or not, just click it! If it doesn’t take you anyway, then it is probably not linked correctly.
Hope this helps! cheers…matt
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