instead of <href>
This doesn't make any sense to me either. The syntax is always... <a href="URL">
The href attribute is part of whatever kind of link you're considering.
The question to be discussed is how complete the url needs to be... ie, should you use absolute links or relative links... and, if you use relative links, what kind of relative links...
- root relative links, which begin with a forward slash
- or relative links that do not begin with a forward slash.
Here's an excellent thread in which tedster distinguishes among these.... Internal Linking - Better to Use Absolute or Relative Links? http://www.webmasterworld.com/google/4186860.htm
In the same thread, phranque also cites a discussion about CainIV's test which suggests that absolute links may be better for SEO. The consensus has generally been that absolute links and root relative links are basically equal for SEO... but that relative links that aren't root relative should be avoided.
Also not clear in your post...
absolute links www.mydomainname.com
Note that links beginning with www are not
absolute links, as they don't include the (http) protocol. I've seen some sites get into quite a bit of trouble using www
at the start of an internal nav url, as this can look like the beginning of a relative link (of the kind that isn't root relative), which can create a very messy url.