How to Insert a Text Link in an Email With macOS Mail

Use clickable text links instead of pasting an entire URL in the email

What to Know

  • Rich text mail: Type a message and highlight a word for the hyperlink. Go to Edit > Add Link. Paste the URL.
  • Plain text mail: Post the URL on a line by itself. If the URL is longer than 69 characters, use a URL shortener service.
  • Toggle between rich text and plain text: Open a message. Choose Format > Make Rich Text or Make Plain Text.

This article explains how to insert a link in rich text or a URL in plain text emails with Mac OS X Mail. Information on editing or removing a link is included.

How to Create a Hyperlink in Rich Text Emails for macOS Mail

Inserting a link to a web page is easy in Mail for macOS. Just copy the webpage's URL from your browser's address bar and paste it into the body of the email. However, the way Mail formats outgoing messages may break the URL you're trying to send. One workaround is to create a hyperlink.

To add a clickable link, you must compose your message as rich text.

  1. Open Mail and start a new message.

  2. From the menu bar, select Format > Make Rich Text to compose your message in rich text format. (If you see only Make Plain Text, your email is already set for rich text, and you don't have to do anything.)

    Make Rich Text menu selection
  3. Type your message and highlight the word or phrase that you want to turn into a hyperlink.

  4. Under the Edit menu, select Add Link...

    Add Link
  5. A box will pop up and ask for the link. Paste the URL and select OK.

The appearance of the linked text changes to indicate it is a link. When the email recipient clicks the linked text, the web page will open.

How to Create Hyperlinks to URLs in Plain Text Emails

Mac Mail won't place a clickable text link in the plain text version of an email, as the plain text format by its nature does not support text links. If you are not sure if the recipient can read emails with rich or HTML formatting, paste the link in the message body directly instead of linking text to it. Follow these steps to make sure Mail does not "break" the link:

  • Paste the URL on a line of its own.
  • If the URL is longer than 69 characters, use a service like Bitly or TinyURL to make the URL shorter. Mail breaks lines at 70 characters. If the break occurs in the middle of a URL, the link may not be clickable.

How to Edit or Remove a Link in a macOS Mail Message

If you change your mind, you can change or remove the hyperlink in macOS Mail:

  1. Click anywhere in the text that contains the link.

  2. Under the Edit menu, select Edit Link.

    Edit Link
  3. Select Remove Link > OK. The link will be gone from the highlighted text.

    Remove Link
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