Using Hyperlinks Correctly in WordPress


Any good content marketer worth his or her salt knows the value of using links in their content. It’s a good strategy to practice – whether you’re linking internally to content you’ve written in the past or to external resources you mention in posts.  However, a lot of people overlook a small, single detail that could mean the difference between someone staying on their website or leaving.

External Link Targeting

The rule is simple: if you are taking someone off-site (whether it’s a completely new domain or even a sub-domain of your current site), you want to make sure the link opens in a new tab or window. In WordPress, that’s as easy as checking a box as you’re inserting the hyperlink. Just in case you want the entire process:

  • Type the text you want to link.
  • Highlight it and click on the hyperlink button in the WordPress editor bar (it looks like a chain link).

  • Fill out the URL. The Link Text should be filled out for you already
  • Check the box that says “Open link in a new window/tab”.

That’s it. When you click on the hyperlink in the content, it’ll take you to a new window or tab and will leave your content open in the previous location.

Internal Link Targeting

You want to make sure that people visiting an internal link (a link that shares a domain with your website url) don’t visit a new window or tab. It’s assumed that any links that are in the same domain are on the same site and shouldn’t confuse users. One exception: if you host multiple websites in sub-folders, and want to link from one site to another, use a new tab or window.

As a bonus, if the content you want to link to is a WordPress content piece (page, post, category, or custom content / taxonomy), you can click the “Or link to existing content” drop down and see options to easily link to existing content.