What is a Hyperlink?

The easiest way to describe a hyperlink is to show you what a hyperlink looks and feels like.  But that would be too easy (don't worry...we will).  First a definition of hyperlink by Webopedia:
An element in an electronic document that links to another place in the same document or to an entirely different document. Typically, you click on the hyperlink to follow the link. Hyperlinks are the most essential ingredient of all hypertext systems, including the World Wide Web. (Source)
 So basically, this is a hyperlink: Business Plan Writing in New York

The hyperlink does not need to pertain to the subject matter of the linking website.  For example, you can put a hyperlink on any word or group of words on a word document, webpage, email, blog and even some social media sites.

Now let's get more technical.  The HTML <a> tag defines a hyperlink.  A hyperlink (or link) is a word, group of words, or image that you can click on to jump to another document.  When you move the cursor over a link in a Web page, the arrow will turn into a little hand. (Try scrolling over one of the many hyperlinks on the right side of our website titled "What is.." or "How to..." and see the arrow change into a hand)

The most important attribute of the <a> element is the href attribute, which indicates the link's destination.  This may be foreign unless you are working on HTML, which is common on Blogger, Wordpress or other website programs.

By default, unless changed by the developer or webmaster, links will appear as follows in all browsers:

  • An unvisited link is underlined and blue
  • A visited link is underlined and purple
  • An active link is underlined and red
W3Schools wrote a great article about hyperlinks:

HTML Link Syntax
The HTML code for a link is simple. It looks like this:
<a href="url">Link text</a>

The href attribute specifies the destination of a link.
<a href="http://www.w3schools.com/">Visit W3Schools</a>
which will display like this: Visit W3Schools
Clicking on this hyperlink will send the user to W3Schools' homepage.

Tip: The "Link text" doesn't have to be text. It can be an image or any other HTML element. (Source)

Want to get more geeky???  Wikipedia says:
In computing, a hyperlink is a reference to data that the reader can directly follow either by clicking or by hovering or that is followed automatically. A hyperlink points to a whole document or to a specific element within a document. Hypertext is text with hyperlinks. A software system for viewing and creating hypertext is a hypertext system, and to create a hyperlink is to hyperlink (or simply to link). A user following hyperlinks is said to navigate or browse the hypertext. 
A hyperlink has an anchor, which is the location within a certain type of a document from which the hyperlink can be followed only from the homepage; the document containing a hyperlink is known as its source code document. For example, in an online reference work such as Wikipedia, many words and terms in the text are hyperlinked to definitions of those terms. Hyperlinks are often used to implement reference mechanisms, such as tables of contents, footnotes, bibliographies, indexes, letters, and glossaries. 
In some hypertext, hyperlinks can be bidirectional: they can be followed in two directions, so
both ends act as anchors and as targets. More complex arrangements exist, such as many-to-many links. 
The effect of following a hyperlink may vary with the hypertext system and may sometimes depend on the link itself; for instance, on the World Wide Web, most hyperlinks cause the target document to replace the document being displayed, but some are marked to cause the target document to open in a new window. Another possibility is transclusion, for which the link target is a document fragment that replaces the link anchor within the source document. Not only persons browsing the document follow hyperlinks; they may also be followed automatically by programs. A program that traverses the hypertext, following each hyperlink and gathering all the retrieved documents is known as a Web spider or crawler.
If after this post you are still having trouble understanding what a hyperlink is....just look at every-time the word "Source" has been used.  That is the essence of a hyperlink.  Hope this was helpful

Have useful tips or information about the subject matter in this article?  Feel free to comment below...

Hope this was helpful,

The PushYourRank Team
Author: Nicholas Coriano

About The Author: Nicholas Coriano is an Entrepreneur, Web Developer, Social Media Marketer, SEO Consultant and the founder of this blog and The NewYorkWebsiteDesignCenter.com.  While developing websites for his own businesses and marketing his entrepreneurial ventures online, he began blogging useful tips and "how-to" articles on PushYourRank.com for reference purposes.  To retain Nicholas for help with your Website, Social Media, SEO or other online/technology needs, email PushYourRank@Gmail.com

About PushYourRank.com: PushYourRank.com (the Blog) is a blog that helps small businesses, start-ups, developers, amateurs website builders, bloggers and entrepreneurs develop their websites, their social media presence, their search engine optimization techniques and more ....online.  The Blog publishes articles about Ecommerce, Email Marketing and How To Make Money Online...as well as any topic that pertains to the Internet or Online.  If you need help developing a website, SEO or Social Media outsourcing, see NewYorkWebsiteDesignCenter.com, if you would like to advertise or have us publish an article on a certain subject, please email us at PushYourRank@Gmail.com