"Links allow your readers to select which offer or detail they want to understand better or read more about, without distracting them with information that may not be useful," writes Maria Pergolino in a post at the Marketo blog. Another benefit: They also enable marketers to gauge a reader's interest in various topics.

To help you get the best results from links in your email offer, Pergolino offers advice like this:

Make links inviting, easy to understand and simple to use. "Don't just say, 'Click here' after a paragraph and expect a reader to click through," she says. "Instead, link key phrases that identify what a click of the link is going to render."

Put the right link in the right place. According to Pergolino, a "contextual" link—one directly related to the content of your offer—should appear at the top of your message. A "bonus" link that leads to complementary offers or content goes in a banner or a side navigation panel. And a "permanent" link (e.g., forward to a friend, unsubscribe) "should be located in the same place in each email so email recipients don't have to spend time searching."

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