Why you should never write “click here”
July 05, 2013
Morgan and I recently attended the HighEdWeb West conference in Orange, California. We returned to campus with lots of new ideas, but one seemingly tiny thing looms large for me: we’ve got to stop telling our web visitors to “click here.”
It’s an antiquated construction, and there are plenty of reasons to stop. Here are a few that stand out to me:
- It impedes our site’s accessibility because it provides no information for visually impaired visitors using a screen reader to quickly navigate a page based on its links.
- In fact, it slows down all visitors! Everyone has to rely on context to determine what will happen when following a link.
- It’s irrelevant. Lots of web traffic comes from mobile devices whose users aren’t clicking on a mouse.
So, what should we do instead? Several sites offer detailed examples about how best to structure links for a good user experience. I’ll boil it down to a few tips here, but please read more from Smashing Magazine.
- Link to nouns, not verbs.
- Tell people what they’ll get at the link.
- End your sentence with a link.
You can find more information about links, web writing, and a whole lot more on our Web Best Practices page. And, as always, please get in touch if you have any questions!