A hyperlink—also called a “link” or “web link”—is an element inside an online piece of content, webpage, image, document, etc. that links to another URL on the web.
Hyperlinks can appear in the form of icons, images, or text and support the intricate worldwide web that is formed of all the interlinking pages on the internet.
What Hyperlinks Do & How to Use Hyperlinks
Hyperlinks allow you to visit websites without knowing their URLs. They’re often used to refer to relevant content on a different URL. As such, they’re usually embedded inside of the content you’re viewing at that time. They may be included within a sentence, which is often marked out by a different text color (usually blue) or underlined. This helps to make the link visible to you.
By attaching a link to the text within a sentence (known as the “anchor text“) the content is undisturbed by a long URL but still links the reader to sources or reference material. Links on icons or images can be used the same way. A common example includes social media icons on websites that lead users to the site’s social media profiles.
Images may also link to other sites or other content. For example, clicking on an image on a portfolio website—this may open a more detailed folder with associated work.
Hyperlinks can also be used to link to different locations on the same page using anchor tags. These tags mark a position on the page, like above a particular paragraph or at the beginning of a new section.
Hyperlinks can also be found in offline documents like PDFs, Word documents, or presentations. When clicked on, they’ll open an internet browser and link from the software to a URL on the web.
How to Create a Hyperlink
Usually, to create a hyperlink all you need to do is highlight the text where you wish to add a link, then click the “link” icon on your document editor and paste the link in the appropriate field.
When coding a website from scratch, a hyperlink can be included by using an a-tag and a reference. The code to add a link looks like this: <a href=”www.google.com”> Google </a>. Where href is the attribute, the web address is located between the quotation marks and the text between the brackets > < is the text that appears as the finished, hyperlinked text to the end user. It will usually show up as blue-colored and underlined to indicate that it’s a hyperlink.