The hyperlink is an HTML tag that describes a link to another resource online. Specified as the href attribute of the anchor tag, it looks like this:

<a href=”http://trwebco.com/”>Toms River Web Design</a>

The hyperlink (or just link) is the foundation of the world wide web. Without the link there would be no way to specify the relationship of documents. In fact, there would be no web at all since there would be no way to “Click here to read more”. Obviously this is something we take for granted today, but besides content, it’s the most important part of the web.

Besides defining the relationship of documents, and letting the user “Click Here”, links have another property that is pretty much unseen. That is the reputation that is passed through a link. We have also heard this described as link juice, PageRank, and rank.

In academia, the strength of a cited resource is based on the quality of the documents that cite it. So the reputation of a page can be determined by the reputation of pages that link to it. And the reputation of a website can be determined by the pages that link to it, in aggregate. All incoming links to a website may be called its link profile.

This is the guiding principle of most major search engines constructed from 1998 onwards. And just as we users take “Click Here” for granted, some SEO’s have forgotten how search engines work.