Should a link open in a new or same browser tab

You know when you click on a link… sometimes it will open up the web page in a new browser tab and other times it will open up the page in the same that you were already on.


Link Opens In the Same Tab

This has been the original expected behavior when you click, although nowadays you don’t know what to expect. If you click on a link that opens in the same tab (overwriting the existing page), you do have a choice to “Go back” to the original page if you want to.

Link Opens A New Tab

If you click on a link that opens a new tab, you now have two open in your browser instead of one.

Note: You always have a choice when using a mouse. You can simply click on the link or you can “right click” your mouse and choose “Open Link in New Tab” if that’s what you want to do. I like it this way because it gives me the choice.


Which Way as a Blogger

As a blogger, when I add a link to a page or an article I have the choice of how the link will behave. I can insert a link to open in the same or a new browser tab (code: target=”_blank”).

Over the years I have done this both ways.

Lately I’ve been inserting my links to open in the same (requiring that you “Go back” if you want to get back to MSB). This is generally the normal and historical behavior of a link.

My personal preference is to expect a link to open in the same tab. This gives me the choice of using my mouse (right click) to open in a new tab if I want to do it that way. However you still don’t know (unless you are familiar with the website) whether or not that link will open in a new tab or stay where it was…

Which is the right way?

When searching for the right way or wrong way for links to open, there’s no consensus. It looks like it’s 50/50 out there. There may or may not be technical advantages of opening in a new tab (keeping your original web page still open in another tab). Some might find it annoying while others might even find it convenient.

So here’s my question:
Which way do you like it better?

Not saying that I will change what I’m currently doing, but I thought it would be helpful for me to discover (by way of a POLL) which way you prefer. Everyone has their own notion of how they think things should work, so let’s find out…

POLL Results:

Should links open is same tab?

70% say that a link should open in a new tab.
17% say that a link should open in the same tab.
13% don’t care.