Home – New Forums Tech talk Links opening in new window…newbie question

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    Wasn’t sure where to post this…but I have a question:

    Currently, my website has several links on it – but when you click on them, it navigates you away from our page, to the link (rather than opening the link in the new window).

    Now, I know you can right click on a link and choose to open in new window – but I would assume not everyone knows this.

    So here are my questions:
    -What are the pros and cons of having links open in a new window
    – Does it effect my SEO? (ie does it look like a bounce if someone opens my website and within a few seconds navigates away because they clicked a link)? – Does opening the link in a new window have a any downsides, other than being annoying when you end up with 20 windows open?!

    Or – does it really not matter and am I over thinking this?!!!

    Any advice appreciated.

    Many thanks

    Stuart B
    • Total posts: 1,070

    The easy answer is, us the target=”_blank” to open a new window any time you think it would be most convenient for the user.

    Just take a common sense approach. If someone is on your website and you think the link would be something they’d want to look at while still being on your website then open it in a new window for them.

    In most cases (warning this is a broadbrush statement) most links which are taking someone off site would be the most likely to have them open in a new window so that you don’t lose them as a result of linking to otherwise useful content.

    By the same token you wouldn’t use the “blank” link for linking to internal pages in your website because that would be super annoying (though there are always exceptions to the rule).

    • Total posts: 2,642

    Hi Forensic,
    As Octopus says, this is a visitor usability issue.

    Opening a page from the same domain in a new window or the same window will have no impact on a page’s ranking in the search engines.

    Opening a link to one of your own pages in a new window is not a “bounce” as people are still on the same domain.

    To my knowledge, Google does not use “bounce rate” in its ranking algorithm and I don’t see how it would ever make any sense for it to do so.

    There is a huge variance in average numbers of pages visited depending on the type of site. People can spend a lot of time on news, shopping, games and entertainment sites.

    However for much of the information searches made on the vast numbers of small business websites, Google will know that the average number of pages visited will be around 2.

    Think of the huge number of searches that relate to phone numbers, addresses and directions. All of these should be answered without the need to click to another page.

    A 100% bounce rate for any of these information searches would indicate a “good” website not a “bad” one.

    There has been a very large drop in the average pages viewed for many websites since the recent advent of mobile phones. This relates to what info phone users seek and this has nothing to do with how many pages are viewed on websites.

    PS You may want to correct your signature link to your website as it currently generates a “file not found” error.

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