Links Best Practices
Link relevant text, and not words like "click here"
New window vs. same window
- Links taking users away from your website (including links to other CMU-affiliated websites) should open in a new window.
- Links to pages within your website should open in the same window.
- Links to documents (e.g, PDFs, Word Docs, etc.) should open in a new window as users will typically close a window when they're done viewing a document.
Label document links
Links to documents (e.g., PDFs, Word Docs, etc.) that launch applications should be labeled, such as: Campus Map [pdf]
Warn users when links require a login
Good example: Staff Information [login required].
Reserve underlined text for links
The CMS will automatically style links to be underlined; it is not recommended to assign an underline to any other type of text.
Be selective when using anchored links
In the past, anchored links were used to "jump" a user to a specific section of a lengthy page containing a lot of content. As shorter, easily-scannable pages have become preferrable, the use of anchored links has fallen out of favor. However, there may still be a practical need for using anchored links, such as an alphabetical directory. Learn how to create anchored links for this purpose.