Authors: Think Beyond ‘Read More’ and ‘Click Here’

You guys are writers! You’re creative with words! Maybe it’s time to break out of the mold when it comes to link text on your website.

If you browse 50 author websites, you’ll probably find the words “Click here” … “Read more” and “Buy Now” appearing hundreds of times. Because it’s easy. It’s clear. It’s pretty standard, right?

Here are some reasons why you should throw “standard” under the bus and start getting more creative with your link text…

  1. Google likes words! Want to start ranking highly on Google for a keyword, like “science fiction novel”? Then have those words in the links on your website. Google calls this “anchor text” — it’s the text that is actually clickable and links to another page on your website. The page that is linked to from the exact words in the anchor text will actually start appearing higher on results pages for that search term. “Click here” does you no good in terms of the search engines.
  2. Readers like more detail. Sure, people will click on a link that says “Read more.” But even MORE people might click on it if it actually tells them what they’re getting. For example, if you have a picture of your book cover with a “Read more” link underneath it, try changing that link text to, “Get the publishing details,” or “Watch the book trailer.” The more information you can give people about where they’re going, the more likely they are to click.
  3. Remember, this is a marketing tool! Offer benefits to your readers in your links. For example, “Sign up for tips” is far more likely to get someone to subscribe than “Click here.” … “Get a sneak peek inside this breathtaking book” is more interesting than “Featured excerpt.” Get the idea? You need to sell your clicks, just like you’re selling your book.

So next time you see the words, “click here” or “read more” on your website … click your “edit” tool and change them!