Linking from text

Linking correctly is important not only for the reader’s experience of your site, but also for SEO-purposes, as a well-linked page will be rewarded by a higher Google rank.

Rules of thumb

1: Keep links relevant

Do not link unless there is something useful and relevant to link to such as destinations or content that enhances the topic of the article.

This means that from an article on the northern lights, don’t link to a destination article from Finnmark with a summer focus, but to content that is relevant for users exploring the northern lights page. Likewise, in the cycling article below, a link to an editorial page on Rallarvegen would be correct as this is a cycling road, but the destination pages on Lofoten and Vesterålen are probably too general for the user exploring the cycling content.

bikingsnippet

2: Use descriptive link texts

A link text should give a good impression of what the link leads to when seen alone, without the context of the surrounding text.

Avoid using link texts like these: Instead, use link texts like these:
Click here to read more. Learn more about fjords.
Click here to read more. Read more about biking in Norway.
Read more. Find out more and plan your own trip to Finse.
You’ll find more about this here. Save money on your trip to Norway.

3: Place links towards the end

Links should be placed as late in the sentence and the paragraph as possible, never at the beginning. Alternatively, link after the paragraph or at the end of the text block. As they say; write to the left, link to the right.

4: Avoid short link texts

Try to avoid single-word link texts. Ideally you should use 4-9 words in a link text.

5: Don’t link too much

Don’t exceed 10 links in one article. Too many links in a text is bad for readability and might lead to “choice overload” for the reader.

6: Never include «www»

A URL may be used as a link text, but never include “www” in a URL link text.

7: Do not repeat links

Never repeat links on the same page, as this may be seen as an attempt to artificially increase the article’s search value by Google.

8: Avoid linking to products

Don’t link to products from editorial pages. Products should instead be given visibility through using the listings feed.

9: Internal links

Always use the CMS link function and select nav item, like this:

linknav

… and then this (for Primary – select the equivalent for your language version if you are working on a different version):

linknav2

10: External links

Link externally when useful content is not found on Visit Norway. If the external site does not exist in your language version, link to the English version instead (except for Swedish and Danish, which may link to Norwegian sites) add «(English only)» in the link text.

If you are linking externally, do the same as in 9) above, but instead of selecting nav item, select custom link and paste the URL there:

linkcustom

A few things to keep in mind

  • Do not link from bold text or headings – plain text only.
  • Never use quote marks in link texts! It will screw up the HTML code and ruin your article!