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What Is a Broken Link in SEO? How Do Broken Links Affect Your SEO?

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What is a broken link in SEO?

A broken link is a link on a website that no longer works. This can be due to the page it was linking to being deleted, moved, or renamed. Broken links can hurt your SEO because they prevent search engines from being able to crawl and index your site properly.

example of what is broken link in seo

Broken links can hurt your SEO in several ways. First, they prevent search engines from being able to crawl and index your site properly. This can lead to lower rankings and less traffic. Second, broken links can create a poor user experience, which can lead to people bouncing off of your site and going elsewhere. Finally, broken links can make it difficult for people to navigate your site, which can also lead to lower traffic levels.

If you have broken links on your website, the best thing you can do is fix them as soon as possible. You can do this by redirecting the old URL to the new one using a 301 redirect. You can also use a plugin like Broken Link Checker to help you find and fix broken links on your website.

Do broken links affect my SEO?

Broken links in SEO affect the user experience on your website

Broken links negatively affect the user experience on your website. When users click on a broken link, they are taken to an error page instead of the content they were expecting to find. This creates a poor user experience, which can lead to people leaving your site and going to another one that does work. In addition, search engines view broken links as a sign that your website is not well-maintained and will penalize your site accordingly.

Broken links in SEO affect the bounce rate

The bounce rate is the percentage of visitors who leave your site after viewing only one page.

If a user clicks on a broken link, they will be taken to an error page. This increases the bounce rate because the user has left your site without viewing any other pages and lost out on content that might have been interesting to them.

What causes broken links in SEO?

Typo in the URL

A typo in the URL is when a user incorrectly types in the URL of a website.

It can happen for a variety of reasons, such as when a user mistypes the URL, or when they click on a link that has been incorrectly copied.

The best way to fix it is to redirect the incorrect URL to the correct one.

A page that has been deleted

A page that has been deleted is an error page that is displayed when a user tries to access a webpage that no longer exists.

There are a few ways that this can happen. Maybe you accidentally deleted the page, or maybe you changed the URL and forgot to redirect the old one. Either way, it results in the same thing: users trying to access your page get an error message instead.

The first thing you need to do is figure out why the page was deleted in the first place. If it was an accident, then you can just recreate the page and be on your way. But if it was intentional (for example, if you changed the URL), then you need to set up a redirect from the old URL to the new one so that users will end up where they’re supposed to go.

A page that has been renamed

A page that has been renamed is a page on your website that has had its URL changed. This can happen for a number of reasons, such as when you change the name of the page or move it to a new location.

There are a few ways that a page can be renamed. The most common way is through a change in the URL structure of your website. This can happen if you change the domain name of your site, move to a new hosting provider, or make changes to the way your pages are organized. Other times, it can happen if you simply change the name of the page itself.

If you have renamed a page on your site, it’s important to update any links that point to that page so that they still work. You should also set up redirects from the old URL to the new one so that visitors and search engines are directed to the correct location.

Change of the domain name

There are a few reasons why your domain name might change. The most common reason is that your website has outgrown its old domain and you need to upgrade to a new, more powerful one. Other reasons include changes in your business model or a merger or acquisition with another company.

If you do need to change your domain name, the process is actually quite simple. First, you’ll need to purchase the new domain and set up hosting for it. Once that’s done, you can use a 301 redirect to point all of the old pages on your old domain to the new pages on your new domain. This will tell search engines that your content has moved and ensure that anyone who clicks on an old link will be taken to the right page on your new site.

If you don’t properly redirect your old pages to your new domain, you could lose all of the SEO value that those pages have built up over time. You’ll also risk confusing and frustrating visitors who click on links that no longer work.

How to find broken internal links in SEO?

Google Search Console

If you’re looking to improve your website’s SEO, Google Search Console is a great free tool to use. One of the many things it can do is show you any 404 errors your website has generated. This means that if someone visits a page on your website that doesn’t exist, they’ll see a 404 error page. To find out about any 404 errors your website has generated, log into Google Search Console and go to Crawl > Crawl Errors. From here, you can see a list of all the 404 errors on your website.

Screaming Frog

If you’re looking for a desktop program that can crawl your website and find broken links, Screaming Frog is a great option. It’s available for both Windows and Mac, and it’s very easy to use. Just enter your website’s URL into the program and click Start. Then click Response Codes and filter Client Error. The program will then crawl your website and generate a list of all the internal links it finds. You can then export this list as a CSV file.

check your website and page url for broken links with screaming frog

SEMRush Site Audit

SEMRush Site Audit is a great tool for finding broken links on your website.

What you need to do is to Add a New Project > Site Audit. Once the SEO audit is completed, you will be shown a list of issues, including the broken links on your website.

check your broken links with semrush site audit tool

How to prevent broken links in SEO

Use short and simple URLs

  • Use keyword-rich phrases instead of long strings of numbers and letters. For example, “example” is better than “xyz123.”
  • Use hyphens (-) to separate words instead of underscores (_). For example, “example-page” is better than “example_page.”
  • Avoid using capital letters, as they can be difficult to read and are often converted to lowercase by web browsers and search engines. For example, “examplepage” is better than “ExamplePage.”

Test if your links are working

There are a few ways that you can test your links to see if they are working. One way is to use an online link checker tool, such as Google Search Console, SEMRush Site Audit, etc. Another way is to manually check each link yourself by clicking on them and seeing if they take you to the correct page.

Use a link checker tool

A link checker tool helps you check for broken links on your website. It can also help you find out if there are any redirects or errors when people try to visit your site.

To use a link checker tool, simply enter the URL of your website into the tool and it will scan the site for any broken links. If any are found, the tool will provide you with a report detailing where the broken links are and how to fix them.

There are several benefits of using a link checker tool, including:

  • Helping you to keep your website running smoothly by avoiding broken links;
  • Allowing you to find and fix any redirects or errors on your site;
  • Making it easier for people to visit your site by ensuring that all links work correctly.

How to fix broken links in SEO

Check and fix if there is any typo in the URL

A typo is a mistake made when typing the URL, usually a spelling mistake. You can use a spell checker to check for typos, such as Screaming Frog.

A typo in the URL is simply entering the wrong URL in your browser’s address bar – if you type www.example.com/page instead of www.example.com/paeg, you’ll probably end up at a 404 error page.

If your page has been deleted, make it real again

If you’ve clicked on a link and arrived at a 404 error page, it’s likely that the page has simply been deleted.

To make your page live again, you can use Google Sites and simply restore your deleted page.

Redirect to another page

If you want to redirect an old URL to a new URL, you should use a server-side 301 redirect. This is the best way to ensure that users and search engines are directed to the correct page.

Once you’ve added your 301 redirects, be sure to test it out to make sure it’s working properly. You can also use Google Search Console’s Fetch as a Google tool to submit your new URL and request that Google crawls it.

Delete your broken link

Once you’ve found the broken link, simply delete it from your website. If the link was in your navigation menu, you may need to update your menu structure. If the link was in the body of a post or page, you can simply delete it or replace it with a working link.

FAQ about broken links in SEO

Do my broken links affect Google Algorithm?

Broken links can negatively affect your website’s search engine optimization (SEO) by preventing search engines from crawling and indexing your pages. They can also cause users to leave your site if they click on a broken link and are taken to an error page.

How should I prioritize fixing broken links in SEO?

First, fix the broken links on your website. Next, if you have a blog or other kinds of external content outside of your website; then try to remove those links from it.

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