Links can increase the value of your website’s content by guiding visitors to relevant pages when clicked. If a visitor wants to learn more about a topic used as anchor text on a webpage, he or she can click the link. Unfortunately, though, not all links work as intended. If your WordPress website has broken links, it may prevent you from achieving your digital marketing goals.
What is a Broken Link?
Also known as a dead link, a broken link is a linked element on a webpage. A broken link points to a nonexistent file, such as another webpage or an image. If a link’s target URL doesn’t contain a file, it gets classified as a broken link.
Without a file at the target URL, clicking on a broken link results in a 404 error. Regardless of which web browser a visitor uses, he or she will see a 404 error page after clicking a broken link.
Broken links typically occur in the following ways:
- The target URL gets entered incorrectly.
- The linked file gets deleted.
- The linked file gets moved to a new location.
How Broken Links Affect Your Website
Broken links can negatively affect your website’s performance in several ways, one of which is promoting a poor user experience. When a visitor clicks a link, he or she expects to see the linked file. If the visitor encounters a 404 error page rather than the file described in the anchor text, he or she may leave your website and never return.
In addition to promoting a poor user experience, broken links may restrict your website’s ability to rank in the search results. Search engines will crawl your website’s links while paying close attention to their target URLs. While one or two broken links shouldn’t have a noticeable impact on your website’s search rankings, an excessive amount of broken links will likely drive down your site’s visibility on Google and Bing. Check out our Business Growth & Care Plans to learn more about our services that can help you with broken links as well as a variety of other services to help grow your business online.
The Best WordPress Broken Link Solutions
You can always test the functionality of your website’s links by manually clicking them. If a link takes you to a 404 error page, you can either replace or remove it. If you have a large website with hundreds or even thousands of links, though, you should consider an alternative solution.
ManageWP is an all-in-one WordPress management solution with a link monitoring tool and nine other tools and monitoring services we use for our clients on our Business Growth and Care plans. Whether you operate a single website or a network of 100 websites, ManageWP will automatically monitor them for broken links. The above image shows how easy it is to fix any broken links your site may have. Right from the ManageWP dashboard, you can fix all links- either edit them, remove them, turn them into a Nofollow link, or ignore the link. It couldn’t be easier or quicker, and for that reason, it is one of our favorite tools we use on our site and for clients.
Another WordPress solution for broken links is SEMrush. It features a website auditing tool that automatically scans your website for problems associated with crawling, coding, and links.
Finally, you can use the Broken Link Checker plugin to find and fix broken links on your WordPress website automatically. After installing and activating Broken Link Checker, it will begin scanning your site for broken links. You can even change the target URL of broken links from the plugin’s interface.
Don’t let broken links hinder your website’s performance. In addition to running a successful business, we understand there probably isn’t a lot of time to stay on top of your website’s performance. Checking broken links also gets very time-consuming. We can handle that for you! Contact us today for professional assistance with finding and repairing your site’s broken links.
Briana is our content maven at Webdirexion bringing writing, editing, SEO, and social media skills to the team. She graduated from the University of Georgia with a B.A. in Communication Studies and has served as an “Ambassador for Global Awareness” a volunteer assignment to promote civil rights and social action.
At Webdirexion she is helping with writing, editing, quality checks, and learning page layout and split testing using the Divi WordPress theme.