Click Here

10 Aug 2009 - 7:54am
5 years ago
10 replies
372 reads
Ron Perkins
2007

I've run a lot of usability tests and I'm puzzled as to why some
designers still use 'click here to' as a link with the subject of the
action following the link.

Does anyone have any anecdotal or hard evidence supporting why this is
a good thing to do?

If not, what problems have you seen it cause?

I'll summarize the responses after a week of comments.

Ron

Ron Perkins
Principal, Design Perspectives
Web Design and Usability
www.DesignPerspectives.com

978-465-6083 Office

Comments

10 Aug 2009 - 8:18am
Anonymous

Ron,

This will be a great head start for you:

http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2009/07/28/designing-read-more-and-continue-reading-links/

(make sure you check out the comments below the article - quite a few
insights in there)

Suze Ingram
User Experience Consultant

suze.ingramat gmail.com
@suzeingram
http://suzeingram.blogspot.com/
http://www.linkedin.com/in/suzeingram

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10 Aug 2009 - 8:44am
Russell E. Unger
2008

There are a number of reasons, actually, and I think attributing them
to "some designers" is a bit on the flawed side.

"Click here" resolves to Adobe as the most popular search result in
Google, btw:

http://www.google.com/search?q=click
here&sourceid=navclient-ff&ie=UTF-8&rlz=1B3GGGL_enUS311US311

But, back on topic. The problem that this causes, ultimately, is a
rather bad SEO problem. Good, descriptive links help keep that link
"juice" internal to your site, as opposed to say, throwing more at
Adobe's Reader (or today's #3 "clickhere.com").

The other issue, however, is that often content is the last thing to
be considered in a website--and I think we've all been there. So, a
designer, who perhaps doesn't have much context for the content and
is using a lot of FPO copy, does something fairly logical by labeling
the calls to action on the page with "click here to...". When
copywriting comes around, it's often not written by folks who have
written for the web and text link calls to action get little or not
consideration.

Your experience, of course, may vary.

--Russ

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10 Aug 2009 - 9:05am
Joshua Porter
2007

A slightly different case, but nice writeup suggesting that "here" at
the end of a link works better than not:

http://dustincurtis.com/you_should_follow_me_on_twitter.html

Josh

On Aug 10, 2009, at 6:44 AM, Russ Unger wrote:

> There are a number of reasons, actually, and I think attributing them
> to "some designers" is a bit on the flawed side.
>
> "Click here" resolves to Adobe as the most popular search result in
> Google, btw:
>
> http://www.google.com/search?q=click
> here&sourceid=navclient-ff&ie=UTF-8&rlz=1B3GGGL_enUS311US311
>
> But, back on topic. The problem that this causes, ultimately, is a
> rather bad SEO problem. Good, descriptive links help keep that link
> "juice" internal to your site, as opposed to say, throwing more at
> Adobe's Reader (or today's #3 "clickhere.com").
>
> The other issue, however, is that often content is the last thing to
> be considered in a website--and I think we've all been there. So, a
> designer, who perhaps doesn't have much context for the content and
> is using a lot of FPO copy, does something fairly logical by labeling
> the calls to action on the page with "click here to...". When
> copywriting comes around, it's often not written by folks who have
> written for the web and text link calls to action get little or not
> consideration.
>
> Your experience, of course, may vary.
>
> --Russ
>
>
> . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
> Posted from the new ixda.org
> http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=44472
>
>
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10 Aug 2009 - 9:50am
bminihan
2007

In web applications, I've seen "click here" used often to overcome
other design problems within the page, including:
* Links using non-obvious colors or no underlines
* Links buried in massive blocks of "marketing copy"

The "click here" is sometimes added after observing users who tell
the practitioner, "I didn't see that link there". That *should*
clue the designer to correct the above problems, but usually, adding
"click here" does (almost) the same job, so folks don't tackle the
tougher issue.

Usually (tho not always), reducing the amount of "copy" on forms
and process-pages, and clearly isolating calls-to-action resolves the
problem without having to add "click here" to everything.

That's just my experience, having redesigned several corporate web
applications where "click here" is very popular.

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10 Aug 2009 - 12:24pm
jkarttunen
2009

Is "Read more" any better?

10 Aug 2009 - 9:27am
Chris Avore
2009

It's also an accessibility problem, too. If someone is using a
screen reader, a site with "Click here to see latest news", "Click
here to browse jobs", "Click here to download our annual report",
and "Click here to sign in" will be mind-numbing at best.

Even worse is when there is no actual descriptive text associated
with the link. For example, if the browser displays "for the latest
news and events, *click here*", the screen reader will only pick up
on the "click here" and there won't be any inclination of where
the link will go. Yes, the title attribute may help, but only if it
accurately describes the destination of the link.

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10 Aug 2009 - 8:43am
Nick Sergeant
2009

I wish I still had the link, but a while back someone did a study on
this and found that most users actually *do* click on things that say
"Click here" more often than links that do not use that verbiage.

Hopefully someone here can chime in with that study.

Nick

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10 Aug 2009 - 1:36pm
Anne Hjortshoj
2007

Even when the links were treated visually as discrete, actionable links?

I'd like to see that study, too -- I'd bet that many of those links
were buried in paragraphs of text, and that users were scanning madly
for something actionable.

(IMO, "click here" is something that should be weeded out of a given
interface. There are better verbal and design-based methods of
directing a user to possible actions.)

-Anne

On Mon, Aug 10, 2009 at 2:43 AM, Nick Sergeant<nick at nicksergeant.com> wrote:
> I wish I still had the link, but a while back someone did a study on
> this and found that most users actually *do* click on things that say
> "Click here" more often than links that do not use that verbiage.
>
> Hopefully someone here can chime in with that study.
>
> Nick
>
>
> . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
> Posted from the new ixda.org
> http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=44472
>
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
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--
Anne Hjortshoj | anne.hj at gmail.com | www.annehj.com | Skype: anne-hj

10 Aug 2009 - 7:51pm
Mike Atyeo
2009

"Click here" links are neither usable nor accessible, for various
reasons.

Because "click here" has some interesting properties (e.g. it
almost ALWAYS appears within links and hardly ever in ordinary text),
I think you can use it as an indicator of some systemic issues within
an organization.

See my short article on using "click here" as a metric (and what to
do with the results) in the 'Insighter' newsletter:
http://bit.ly/J9ej8

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13 Aug 2009 - 9:43am
David Kegel
2008

"That's the way it always has been done."

I have found it to be the case that many best practice fallbacks like
this come from the early days of web/app design. Because it was a new
experience for everyone, a lot was dumbed down. I would not jump to
the conclusion that designers are the ones making this choice. I
still rail against this in work with those who think the general
public is too dumb to know how to use a computer. If a child can
figure out how to turn a page in a book without clearly written
instructions, why do we continue this?

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