What role do link descriptions (linktext) play in external links in DITA?

In DITA, link descriptions, also known as linktext, play a vital role in providing context and information about external links. Linktext serves as the visible text that users interact with, making it essential for user experience and accessibility.

Linktext helps users understand the purpose of the link and what to expect when they click it. When creating external links in DITA, you should always provide meaningful and descriptive linktext. This helps users make informed decisions about whether to follow the link and ensures that they have a clear understanding of the linked content.


Let’s consider an example of a DITA external link:

<link href="https://www.example.com" format="html">Visit Example Website</link>

In this example, “Visit Example Website” is the linktext. It clearly conveys that clicking the link will take the user to the “Example Website.” This descriptive linktext enhances user experience and accessibility in DITA documentation.