Hyperlinks, or links, are the defining feature of the Internet. As Wikipedia states:
“Tim Berners-Lee saw the possibility of using hyperlinks to link any information to any other information over the Internet. Hyperlinks were therefore integral to the creation of the World Wide Web. Web pages are written in the hypertext mark-up system HTML.”
Imagine trying to use the Internet without hyperlinks! Although it seems obvious, many websites don’t underline links at all — instead favoring form over function. Here are some reasons why you should leave your hyperlinks underlined:
- Usability — underlined links are easier to notice when scanning a webpage, it further distinguishes the link text from normal text. This allows visitors to accomplish their goals more quickly;
- Accessibility — your website is more accessible when hyperlinks are underlined. You should never rely on colour alone to convey functionality, think about visually impaired users;
- Familiarity — visitors expect links to be underlined (hyperlinks are underlined by default), and people love having their expectations met, therefore doing so will make your website more satisfying to use.