How to Create Heading Links in WordPress Content
BLOG

How to Create Heading Links in WordPress Content

Reading long blocks of text online can be a significant pain, especially when scanning for the information readers need. Without clear structure and navigation, paragraphs merge into a confusing mess that has visitors itching to click away; this is where anchor links come in, as they can significantly improve the user experience and accessibility of websites.

This article will explore anchor links, their benefits for WordPress sites, different use cases, and a step-by-step guide to creating internal and external anchor links using block and classic editors.

What is an Anchor Link?

An anchor link allows users to “jump” from one part of a web page to another or a different page. These links are handy on long pages or between pages of related content.

Anchor links work by linking to a specific HTML element that has an ID attribute assigned to it. For example, you can link to a heading, section, or other content block by targeting its unique ID.

The Two Components of Anchor Links

  1. Anchor Tag: This HTML tag marks the destination to which it should be linked. It is formatted like <a name= “anchor”></a> where “anchor” is replaced by the unique ID for that section.
  2. Link: The clickable text or image links to the anchor. It references the anchor name by appending a hashtag, such as <a href=” #anchor”>My Link</a>. Clicking this link will automatically scroll the page to bring the anchor tag into view.

By combining these two items, anchor links enable direct access to content further down a page rather than forcing the user to scroll to locate it manually.

how to create Heading Links in WordPress

Benefits of Creating Anchor Links in WordPress

Implementing anchor links in WordPress content provides various helpful benefits for improving user experience, accessibility, SEO, and more. Let’s explore some core reasons why content creators should consider utilizing heading links where appropriate.

1. Enhances Website Navigation

Anchor links enable streamlined navigation through lengthy WordPress posts and pages. Seamlessly jumping between different sections reduces the need for tedious scrolling, resulting in more user-friendly content visitors can efficiently self-navigate.

2. Boosts User Experience

When readers can manually move between page sections, the overall browsing experience feels less restrictive and guided. This greater freedom to immediately access relevant information reduces bounce rates for improved visitor retention.

3. Improves Web Accessibility

Promoting web accessibility for all users is non-negotiable for modern websites; this includes catering to those reliant on assistive technologies like screen readers. Fortunately, screen readers can parse anchor links to enable rapid navigation. For example, visually impaired visitors can quickly jump directly from a table of contents to the associated section headings. Boosting accessibility through anchor links checks an essential box for compliant WordPress sites.

4. SEO Perks

The leading SEO benefit is improving content structure signals through better internal linking and segmentation. Well-optimized anchor text that describes the content also assists search engine crawling; this provides added context to algorithms on the purpose and content of pages. Implement search engine-friendly anchor links as one facet of an integrated SEO plan.

Use Cases for Anchor Links in WordPress

Here are some of the most common use cases and examples of how anchor links might be implemented on WordPress sites:

  • Long Pages/Posts: Anchor links help break up text, allowing users to jump between sections. For example, linking headings in long tutorials or guides.
  • One-page websites often use anchor links to connect menu items to on-page content sections for smooth scrolling navigation.
  • Table of Contents: Anchor links allow readers to jump straight from the TOC list to sections; this is useful in guides and reference content.
  • Featured Sections on Pages and Posts: An anchor link menu in the sidebar enables quick access to a critical process or product features. Whatever the case, strategic anchor links guide visitors to sections that site owners wish to highlight as vital reading.

How to Create Anchor Links in WordPress

After understanding anchor links and why they matter, let’s walk through implementing heading links in WordPress posts and pages from start to finish. We’ll cover the process in both the Classic Editor and Block Editor.

1. Adding Anchor Links in the WordPress Classic Editor

Identify the Content to Anchor Link To

Scroll through the draft post or page to determine the content you wish to anchor the link; this may be a key heading, process, section, or content block that users should easily access.

Add an ID Attribute to Anchor Content

Once you’ve identified the anchor content, edit the HTML to assign it an ID attribute value to be linked to. For example, add id= “my-section” inside a heading or text block tag.

Create Anchor Link Text

Now, decide what clickable text will comprise the anchor link. For example, “Jump to My Section.” Highlight this text in the editor.

Insert Link with ID Value

Access the Insert Link toolbar option, and in the link field, add your ID adjoined to a hashtag symbol (e.g., #my-section).

how to create Heading Links in WordPress

Publish and Test Link Functionality

Publish the post and confirm that clicking the new anchor text scrolls the page to the anchor content. Now, visitors can instantly access essential sections.

2. Adding Anchor Links in the WordPress Block Editor

The steps are pretty similar using the block editor:

Identify Anchor Content

Review your draft post or page and determine what content should serve as the anchor destination that users can jump to.

Assign Anchor ID

Select the content block, and under “Advanced” settings, add the ID without the hashtag (e.g., my-section).

Create Anchor Link Text

Add a new text block with clickable text users will click to access the anchor (e.g., “Jump to Section”).

Link Text Block Using ID

With link text selected, use the link toolbar option to add your ID with the hashtag (e.g., #my-section) in the link field.

how to create Heading Links in WordPress

Test on the front end

Publish changes and confirm the anchor link directs users straight to your chosen content via smooth scrolling!

Adding Anchor Links Automatically with Table of Contents Plugin

Adding anchor links to connect all headings and sections as you publish new content can become extremely tedious. Fortunately, leveraging the right WordPress plugin automates the heavy lifting in just a few clicks.

The Easy Table of Contents plugin is a top choice that auto-generates a table of contents for all pages and posts using existing headings.

How does the Easy TOC Plugin work?

After installing the plugin:

  • It scans your content and pulls out all H2, H3, H4, etc. headings
  • Anchors are automatically added to each heading
  • A table of contents is created at the top of pages/posts linking to the heading anchors

For example, if the page has the following headings:

<h2>Introduction</h2>

<h2>Getting Started</h2>

<h2>Advanced Tips</h2>

The plugin would generate:

Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • Getting Started
  • Advanced Tips

Each item links via a smooth scroll to the correlated heading down the page!

Creating Anchor Links to External Pages

Anchor links enable internal linking and navigation within a post or page and facilitate jumping to specific sections of external pages. This has notable user experience benefits, directing visitors to the most helpful content hosted on another website.

Creating an external page anchor link in WordPress requires three key elements:

  • Destination Page URL
  • Target Section ID
  • Link Text

When combining them, the format follows:

<a href=”https://example.com/sample-page/#section-id”>Read More</a>

Let’s walk through building an external anchor link in a WordPress post:

Identify Destination URL

The target page URL = https://www.examplesite.com/html-guide

Determine Target Section ID

Via inspecting examplesite.com, the section covering common tags has ID = common-tags.

Create Anchor Link Text

Link Text = HTML Tags List

Construct Complete Anchor Link

Bring it all together: <a href=”https://www.examplesite.com/html-guide#common-tags”>HTML Tags List</a>

When users click the anchor text, they’ll be directed to examplesite.com’s Common HTML Tags section rather than simply the top of their HTML guide.

Conclusion

Now that you know how to create anchor links in WordPress, you can take your long-form content to the next level. Implement anchored links to allow visitors to jump to the useful bits that interest them quickly.

If done consistently, anchors can create logical connections between ideas, simplify navigation, and encourage visitors to explore more content. Focus on enhancing reader experience through easy-to-understand and technically reliable anchor links; this improves the accessibility and continuity of ideas while letting search engines better grasp the structure of the content.

wp tech support

Leave a Reply

Comment policy: We value comments and the time that visitors to our blog spend to give feedback. Please note that all comments are manually moderated and any deemed to be spam or promotional will be deleted.