Google: it’s better not to link whole blocks on your web pages

One new thing you can do in HTML 5 is wrap links round block-level elements. That means that you can link a complete block on your web page with a single a href link:
<a href=”example-link.html”>
<h3>This heading will be linked</h3>
<p><img src=”example.jpg” alt=”this image will be linked”>This text will be linked.</p>
<p>This ‘Read more’ link will also be linked.</p>

The single link surrounds the whole block, creating a much wider clickable area. This looks like a good idea. In an online discussion, however, Google’s John Mueller said that this isn’t that good for Google:

“That usage would be fine with us – we’d still pick up the link, and would be able to associate your text as an anchor with that. We’re pretty flexible with parsing HTML, so you could probably even use this with HTML4.

That said, the clearer you make your anchor text, the easier it is for us to understand the context of the link, so I wouldn’t necessarily always use a whole paragraph as the anchor for all of your internal links.”

In other words: Google can find the link but they have difficulty to understand what the link is about if the whole paragraph is one big link. Anchor texts that are related to the topic of your website will have a better influence on the Google rankings of your website.

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Tom Cassy

Tom Cassy is the CEO of SEOprofiler. He blogs about search engine optimization and website marketing topics at “”.