How Diverse Is Your Anchor Text?
I first heard of the term optimized anchor text from Google, so they may have coined the term. Basically it’s just anchor text containing your target keywords. In most cases, it’s exact match anchor text.
For instance, if the keyword you were trying to rank for was best Web design company, examples of optimized anchor text would be:
They all contain the exact same keywords, and it’s evident what you’re trying to rank for. Google does not like this at all.
Why does Google hate optimized anchor text?
To put it simple, when you have 100 backlinks all containing the exact same anchor text, it’s a pretty big sign that the backlink wasn’t earned according to Google’s guidelines and best practices.
Google’s ideal SEO campaign would be one where content creators (such as bloggers and businesses) generate quality, relevant content. Then, that content would be shared by people who found it to be useful, and subsequently spread it around the internet.
Google’s algorithms would see this content as useful and relevant because of how much its being shared, and the page would ultimately appear towards the top of the SERP when people search for keywords related to that content.
This is where the problem with optimized anchor text lies. When people share content naturally, they generally don’t all use the same exact words to link to the original source.
How diverse should my anchor text be?
As diverse and unique as possible. Technically, you shouldn’t have too much control over the anchor text of your backlinks because the links should be coming from other people. However, there are instances like guest blogging, where you actually do have control over what words are used to link back to your site. And in those situations, you have to use your own judgment.
Some people use formulas, or will limit the percentage of times they use any particular keyword for their anchor text. For example, 25% of your anchor text will include your target keyword, 25% will include your brand name, etc. While that technique may work for some people, it makes things more complicated than necessary.