Get a more complete picture about how other sites link to you

Friday, March 16, 2007

For quite a while, you've been able to see a list of the most common words used in anchor text to your site. This information is useful, because it helps you know what others think your site is about. How sites link to you has an impact on your traffic from those links, because it describes your site to potential visitors. In addition, anchor text influences the queries your site ranks for in the search results.

Now we've enhanced the information we provide and will show you the complete phrases sites use to link to you, not just individual words. And we've expanded the number we show to 100. To make this information as useful as possible, we're aggregating the phrases by eliminating capitalization and punctuation. For instance, if several sites have linked to your site using the following anchor text:

Site 1
"Buffy, blonde girl, pointy stick"
Site 2
"Buffy blonde girl pointy stick"
Site 3
"buffy: Blonde girl; Pointy stick."

We would aggregate that anchor text and show it as one phrase, as follows:

buffy blonde girl pointy stick

You can find this list of phrases by logging into Webmaster Tools, accessing your site, then going to Statistics > Page analysis. You can view this data in a table and can download it as a CSV file.

anchor phrases view in the webmaster tools links report

And as we told you last month, you can see the individual links to pages of your site by going to Links > External links. We hope these details give you additional insight into your site traffic.