Marketing Terms

Deep Linking


Linking to a web page other than a site’s home page.


Deep linking has only begun to spark mild controversies in recent times as the Web has become more commercialized. In fact, one of the fundamental strengths of the Web is the ability for any public document to connect to any other public document.

The legality of deep linking has been called into question in several lawsuits involving well-known corporations. Opponents of deep links — typically large corporations — argue that deep linking unfairly eliminates the ability of the home page to contribute to brand building and ad serving functions.

Proponents of deep linking contend that the ability to link freely is central to the philosophy behind the public Internet. On a practical note, they also argue that a deep link is better than no link at all, and may even be more profitable than a home page link, especially if the target site has a poor navigational structure.

see also: SEO Tools

Related Terms

inbound link, outbound link, reciprocal links

view all terms in the SEO glossary or all terms in the Digital Marketing glossary


ALA : Deep Linking – annotated articles.


Net Lawyers Ponder the Right to Link
The Age (September 10, 2002)

Deep Linking Takes Another Blow
Wired (July 25, 2002)

Deep Link Foes Get Another Win
Wired (July 8, 2002)

NPR Retreats, Link Stink Lingers
Wired (June 28, 2002)

Public Protests NPR Link Policy
Wired (June 20, 2002)

Deep Linking is Good Linking (March 3, 2002)

Big Stink Over a Simple Link
Wired (December 6, 2001)

Legality of ‘Deep Linking’ Remains Deeply Complicated
NY Times (April 7, 2000)

Attention Editors: Deep Link Away
Wired (March 30, 2000)

Universal: Don’t Link to Us
Wired (July 27, 1999)