When talking about SEO and Google algorithms, “simple” isn’t the word I would use to describe it. In fact, Google identifies at least ten different types of anchor text.
Generic Anchor Words
A generic anchor doesn’t include any text referencing a keyword. Instead, the reader must rely on the surrounding copy for context clues about what is on the other side of the link.
Generic anchor text might appear to be spammy, but it is actually pretty powerful. Why? Well, it usually includes an attention getting CTA to the link.
Generic Anchor Examples:
About the Author
Branded Anchor Text
Branded anchors include your brand name, and they are great for building recognition. Plus, they are a safe bet to avoid getting flagged for spam.
However if you use an exact match domain (EMD) that includes a target keyword, it gets a little more complicated.
You get a little more leeway from Google before earning a penalty, but if you take it too far with the goal of over-optimizing, Google might catch you.
If you have public figures associated with your brand – such as a journalist or a CEO – Google might also
identify any links with their name as a branded anchor as well.
Branded Anchor Examples:
Bill Hartzer of BillHartzer.com
According to Reuters News Agency
Exact Match Link Text
Exact match anchor text includes the precise keyword the page you are linking to is targeting. If someone decided to link to this very blog post and chose to hyperlink with the words "anchor text", we would earn an exact match link text because that is the keyword we are targeting here.
While it is important to earn some exact match anchors, Google also pays close attention to these links if you have too many. In other words, don't overdo because Google could penalize you.
Exact Match Anchor Examples:
Naked Link Text
Naked anchor text is a URL pasted into the copy from the browser bar and it's clickable! You might see links like this if someone adds references at the bottom of their article and includes your link as a source. I do this when I'm sharing content from another blogger/article writer in my blog posts.
They don't look pretty, but Google likes naked anchors because they are far less likely to imply someone is
trying to use spammy practices to rank for a keyword.
Naked Anchor Examples:
Brand + Keyword Anchor Words
These include your brand name (or branded phrase) and a keyword. They can help you optimize for the keyword without looking spammy to Google AND build brand recognition at the same time.
Brand + Keyword Anchor Examples:
Twitter Marketing - TP Twitter Strategy Training
Syndication Express for Blog Content Syndication
SEMrush for keyword research
Be watching for part two of "What Are The Type of Anchor Texts?"
Founder - Syndication Express
Social Media Strategist