Broken Link

What is a Broken Link?

Broken Link, also known as a dead link, refers to a hyperlink on a web page that no longer works because it fails to direct the user to the intended destination. This can occur for several reasons, such as the destination web page being moved to a different URL, the page being deleted, the website going offline, or the domain name expiring. Broken links can negatively impact the user experience by leading to frustration and disengagement, and they can also harm a website’s search engine optimization (SEO) efforts, as search engines view them as a sign of a poorly maintained site.

Types of Broken Links

  1. Internal Broken Links: These occur within a website, linking to pages or resources on the same domain that are no longer available.
  2. External Broken Links: These are links that point to pages or resources on other domains that are no longer accessible.

Causes of Broken Links

  • Website Restructuring: Changes in the site’s architecture without proper redirection can lead to broken links.
  • Deleted Content: Removing web pages or resources without updating or removing links pointing to them.
  • Domain Changes: Changing the domain name without redirecting the old URLs.
  • Linking Errors: Typos or mistakes in the URL when creating the link.
  • Expired External Resources: Linking to content on other websites that has been moved or deleted.

Impact of Broken Links

  • User Experience: Leads to frustration and may decrease user trust and engagement with the website.
  • SEO Performance: Search engines may lower a site’s ranking if they find many broken links, interpreting it as a sign of neglect.
  • Link Value Loss: Broken internal links result in lost opportunities to pass valuable link equity within the site.

Identifying and Fixing Broken Links

  1. Use of Tools: Utilize website audit tools like Google Search Console, Screaming Frog SEO Spider, or Ahrefs to identify broken links.
  2. Regular Checks: Regularly schedule checks for broken links as part of website maintenance.
  3. Implement Redirects: For internal links that are broken due to moved or renamed pages, implement 301 redirects to the new URLs.
  4. Update or Remove: Update broken external links to point to the current URL or remove the link if no suitable destination exists.
  5. Custom 404 Pages: Design user-friendly 404 pages that help users navigate the site even if they encounter a broken link.


Broken links can significantly impact the usability and SEO performance of a website. Regular monitoring and maintenance are crucial to identify and fix broken links, ensuring a positive user experience and maintaining search engine visibility.

Nedim Mehic

Nedim is a senior technical SEO specialist, and the co-founder of Beki AI. On the Beki AI blog, we share new and innovative strategies to SEO and content marketing.

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