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I am assisting a friend with a blog on WordPress. In his blog articles he is putting in URL's but since he is writing the blog in the visual portion of the editor it is not automatically adding anchor tags. To make them an URL you have to go to the text section of the editor and click on the link button and add the details there.

So that I can advise him, is there other than the benefit to the ease of use an SEO benefit to making these clickable links? I assume yes but have never even thought of this to dig deeper into the subject.

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Hyperlinks that contain words are referred to as Anchor Text, using anchor based links has 2 major benefits:

  1. They improve user experience by informing the user about the page they are about to visit before they click, or least this is how they should be used.
  2. Anchor text also helps SEO by becoming an page indicator, for example if you have a link that is labeled SEO then Google can associate that the page is about SEO, Google uses many factors but Anchor text is one of them - this works internally and externally.

Anchor Text is a big plus for both SEO and User experience but don't over do it... To many indications can negative SEO. So put user experience first and everything else falls together without trying to hard.

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Yes.

  1. If you are linking to your own pages, there is a direct SEO benefit to those pages.

  2. If you are linking to useful external pages, there is probably a small direct SEO benefit to establishing your site as a trustworthy source of information. The evidence for this is somewhat vague, and it's certainly a much smaller factor than inbound links and probably many other factors as well, but here is one example from Matt Cutts:

    In the same way that Google trusts sites less when they link to spammy sites or bad neighborhoods, parts of our system encourage links to good sites.

  3. If you are linking to useful external pages, there is also probably an indirect SEO benefit from the increased ease of use, which could make people more likely to keep coming back to the site, more likely to share links to it, etc.

Also, while it may depend on specific versions of Wordpress or settings therein, you shouldn't have to switch between the html and visual versions of the editor - the link button should generally be available on both.

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