Links


Description

Links (a.k.a, Hyperlinks) take users from their current page to another page, site or file (PDF, Word, Excel, etc.).

Many of the KU CMS Sections include options for single links and/or lists of links. Links can also be added to pages via the WYSIWYG Editor within Body 1 - General Content > General Content.

How To's

Adding Links in Sections

Links in sections are added within the content form and include two fields: Link URL and Link Text. See the documentation for a specific section for detailed instructions.

Adding Links in Body 1 - General Content

  1. Highlight the text you wish to link
  2. Select the Link icon in the WYSIWYG toolbar
  3. In the Link field start typing to link to another page on your site or paste in a URL or node number
  • NOTE: Do not paste in the full URL of a page on your site
  1. If you wish to link to an email enter an email address
  2. If you wish to link to a PDF or document select the Open IMCE file browser link. See IMCE File Browser for information and instructions.
  3. Leave the ID field blank unless you are setting up an anchor link
  4. Leave the Relationship field blank
  5. Only if linking to a URL outside of KU select the Open in new window checkbox (see Accessibility below)
  6. Enter a title if you want the link to display a title when a user hovers over the link
  7. Save

Accessibility

  • See KU Content Accessibilty's Links for additional information.
  • Links should make sense out of context. Phrases such as "Click here," "More," "Click for details," and so on are ambiguous when read out of context.
  • Users must be able to navigate to and select each link using the keyboard alone.
  • Most screen readers say "link" before each link so links do not need to include "link" in the link text, because all users already know that the link is a link.
  • Do not say "link" or "link to" in alt text.
  • Place the distinguishing information of links at the beginning of a link.
  • Links should never be empty. An empty link can be navigated to, but if it does not present any content it can be very confusing for keyboard and screen reader users.

Guidelines and Best Practices

Link Titles

  • Link titles should describe succinctly the resource that viewers will find if they follow the link.
  • Use of non-descriptive link titles like “Click here” and “Learn more” are forbidden on KU websites for accessibility compliance.
  • Do no use the URL as the link title
  • Title links so users can scan link text quickly to navigate to the page they're looking for
  • Link titles should allow users accessing your site via a screen reader to navigate your site effectively.
  • Begin links with the information-carrying word, because users often scan through the first word or two of links to compare them.
  • Effective link titles allow search engines to index links and their landing pages correctly, thus improving search engine results (a.k.a., your SEO).

Opening in New Windows and Tabs

  • Links should open in the same window. The only reason to set links to open in a new window/tab is when they are taking viewers to an external site outside of the ku.edu domain. This is a standard user experience (UX) best practice for links to ensure that the user is not confused by unexpected browser behavior.

All Links Work

Check your site frequently for broken links. See Broken Links below for more information, including link checking resources.

Email Addresses

  • Email links should be the email address, not the person or department's name.
    • Example of Good Email Link Title: "Contact Big Jay at bigjay@ku.edu."
    • Example of Bad Email Link Title: "Contact our mascot Big Jay."

Document and Audio/Video Links

If a link does anything other than go to another web page, such as linking to a PDF file or launching an audio or video player, email message, or another application, make sure the link explicitly indicates what will happen.

Examples

  • Example PDF document title (pdf)
  • Example PowerPoint document title (.ppt)
  • Example Word document title (.docx)
  • Video - Example video file title (.mov)
  • Audio - Example audio file title (.mp3)

Broken Links

Your site’s credibility relies on all the information on your site being accurate and up-to-date. Just like outdated or inaccurate text, broken links damage the user experience and tell users that the information on your site may not be reliable.

Link Checking Resources

Because of the large number of links found on most sites, it is time consuming to check them page-by-page. Here are some online tools to help you check the status of links across your website:

Link Checkers for Live Sites

Link Checkers for Sites in Development

Support