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159

Most of the other answers here seem to be focusing on accessibility, which is fine, but is hardly the point. Screen readers are what? Less than 5% of the market for a general website? The reason "Here" and "Click Here" are bad is because they are useless words. They provide no context. This isn't an accessibility issue; it is a usability issue. There's an ...


124

When links were new (think 1995), designers felt that it was necessarily to let people know that something was a link by saying "here". I'm not sure if it was ever necessary, but it is not necessary now. When people see text formatted as a link, they know it's a link. Using "here" as the link text gives no context (which is especially bad for screen ...


75

My suggestion would be to make the Title and the image click-able. The reasons are as follows The title is generally referenced as the link to go to the actual item and is generally click-able. You can see this in a number of sites including Amazon,Ebay and Google news where the title is click-able and is as the main link for users to go and check out the ...


49

One aspect of this is accessibility. You don't get any context from the link itself. You can see further info on wc3: http://www.w3.org/QA/Tips/noClickHere: When calling the user to action, use brief but meaningful link text that: provides some information when read out of context explains what the link offers -doesn't talk about ...


40

Underlined links can have a negative effect on readibility, according to this 2003 study comparing text readibility for plain text, standard blue hyperlinks and overlay link markers. A later study comparing different link visualisation techniques found that at that time (2004) the common web user was conditioned to underlined blue links, but couldn't ...


36

Rule of thumb: a link takes you to other place, a button does something. That said, things can be flexible in this regard. Links are sometimes seen as low priority buttons, and buttons, almost always take you to other place. [edit 2013] Things have changed a bit since I wrote this answer. I now use big buttons as clear "call to action" and try to avoid ...


36

It emphasizes the wrong part of the text, like this. Links tend to be visually distinctive, and draw the eye. (Less so now that they're not underlined in most cases.) But the 'here' is the least important part of the text, really, and so the link disrupts the reading flow.


30

In general, users expect links to link and command buttons to command. That is, links navigate, presenting new content without changing the underlying data objects or their relations or positions. Buttons change these things, performing creation, deletion, association, conversion, duplication, etc. An easy rule-of-thumb is if the most terse caption for the ...


27

As I disagree with a lot of the notions here I am going to add an opposing view as well. Like most answers I agree that the image and title should be clickable, but in modern designs making the entire box clickable is quite acceptable. Now, first I would like to point out that in the latest Youtube iteration the entire box is clickable: Additionally I ...


27

Browsers render textlinks blue by default. Jeffrey Zeldman wrote an article stating Sir Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the world wide web, reached it at random: http://alistapart.com/blog/post/why-are-links-blue I can't find any information on why visited links are purple. It does however seems logical to me to choose a color close to the link color, ...


26

From a historical viewpoint, I suspect the reason is simply "because someone thought it would be a good idea". In fact, I did a little bit of digging. The padlock icon for HTTPS links was first introduced to MediaWiki in 2004 as part of the then-new MonoBook skin by Gabriel Wicke. Specifically, it first appears (along with a generic link icon and special ...


26

A button performs an action. E.g. Save, delete, register, submit. A link connects you to resource. E.g. a URL or a file. Think of buttons as verbs and links as nouns. That said, there are also other distinctions. Often a link is used where you would have a button, but where you want to de-emphasise the action. Often for secondary options or high risk ...


25

Short answer, no, it's not OK. Code-wise/standards: If you're writing xhtml, it's a deprecated attribute and shouldn't be used. You could consider using the rel="external" attribute instead if you absolutely must. For external links: As you noted, it prevents users from completely leaving your site, which remains open in another tab/window. I prefer the ...


21

Please do make the cancel option a link rather than a button. It makes it so incredibly simple to see which button I should click. Look at this AgileZen login, it's obvious which option is the default:


21

I don't have much in the way of hard data to back this up, but a number of sites which host user-generated links (eg. news aggregators, Wikipedia) specifically ban shortened URLs for trust reasons. Joshua Schachter (creator of Delicious) wrote a blog post explaining some of the issues with them.


20

It's a good idea to think of the link — marked in bold in your post — as the main focus of the sentence. It's what's most important. So if you want the user to focus on the concept of "Android market" that should be the link — if the user should focus on the concept of "upgrading", that should be the link. A good test for this is ...


20

Nielsen says: "Tag clouds were a huge fad in 2009, and have actually been a fad for several years. Even so, usability studies show that most normal users don't know what they are and don't know how to deal with them." Although he doesn't link to any studies, I tend to believe him. Tag clouds are hard to understand and hard to process visually. If it's a ...


20

It is not so clear for people using screen readers. Often all the text is read out first followed by a list of all the hyperlinks. If the hyperlinks are just named things like 'Click Here' then there is no context as to what that link is for. However if it is named 'Full McGuffin product spec' then there is no ambiguity.


19

Wikipedia is, I suppose, the ultimate in hyperlink use and has quite a strict linking style guideline for the ways in which URLs and hyperlinks are used within the text. Editors who don't conform to the style are quickly picked up - especially on more popular articles. I have to say it really does make for a pretty consistent reading experience from one ...


19

It's a verb phrase because it's a call to action; in your blog example it's also navigation, but it's not the same as labling a link "click here to go to X". Users already know how links work and they want to know where the link goes or in this occasion what a link does. Calls to action are usually buttons because of the visual differentiation and emphasis ...


18

Firstly this is really just an extension of an inherent problem with links in the first place, which is that the target doesn't need to have anything to do with the link text - even if the link text looks perfectly adequate. In fact I would suggest that a well written text link is even more likely to engage and fool the user than a shortened link which might ...


18

I can't say if this is the actual reason it was chosen, but a reason why purple is a good choice is that, other than red, it has the lowest relative luminocity of any hue. So, a purple will tend to appear darker than an equivalent blue. Assuming the background is white and the text is black, and assuming we expect people to be more interested in pages they ...


16

You have a few options in terms of referencing pages... QR Codes URL Shortener Using full URL Search No matter which method you choose to use, you have your pros and cons depending on your site's demographic. QR Codes Using a QR code is great for the younger, more tech-savvy, users. They usually carry smartphones with them and can easily scan your ...


15

Agree with everybody else here :-) But just on this one particular point: "Marketers love it because it allows them to link to external content without taking the reader off the page." This is a reasonable fear for a client to have. The user leaving the site and not being able to get back. However, in every single usability test I've done, opening ...


15

Striking through signifies a revision or marking something as invalid. The established practice for visited link is a change in color, usually a less colorful or less saturated color from the original unvisited link's color. Using striked through text is a poor choice, as it is ambigious: Is a striked link no longer valid? Is a striked link not recommended? ...


14

There are no rules, at least no hard and fast ones. Following research to the letter can result in making an ugly site--blue links work best, but blue links on a red background are hard to read! The research however can guide you to the "best practices" and your maintain your sense of good aesthetics so you know when to break from convention. While there ...


14

There are several studies studying users ability to understand icons, text and both. The results of these studies always come to the same conclusion. Double coding (text and image) is always the easiest and fastest for users. Look at the three images below, and decide which one would get you a beer fastest be fastest to recognize. On a more serious note, ...


13

This smells a lot like a folder structure, where you can add as many levels and as many items per level as you please, with deep nesting. I would imagine that a similar view would occur more natural to the user: This mockup builds upon the idea of the user working "top down", thus the "add new item" element is at the bottom. The user could collapse ...


12

Although it makes sense for the banner image and the title to link to the event page, their affordance for clicking isn't as strong as that of a button or text link. That you can click on the image and the title might surface with a hover effect, but a button or text link is naturally clickable. However, the image offers a nice large target, so for someone ...


12

Presuming that your links would be visually distinct from the description, then: title: definitely yes, because something has to be clickable. image: probably yes, because visitors might react to the image alone and never read the text. description: no way Why no on description? Well, first, the more links you have on page, the more choices, the more ...



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