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Broken link checker

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Broken link checker / backlink recovery.

The broken backlink checker is designed to help identify broken link building opportunities for your website. Enter your URL and this tool will check if there are external backlinks point to pages within your website that don’t exist.

Broken link building tool

What is broken link building?

Broken link building is a link building tactic focused on recovering backlinks that point to non-exiting pages on your website. This is a very effective strategy because the link is already there and you just have to recover it by recreating the page or by redirecting the URL to the correct page.

How do broken backlinks occur?

These are probably the 3 most common reasons why broken backlinks occur. (1) A product goes out of stock and the product page itself is no longer available for visitors and search engines. (2) Changing the URL structure of your website can have a huge impact and can quickly result into thousands of 404 pages if you don’t have the redirects in place. (3) A typo can generate a backlink pointing to a non-existing page. For example this URL will result into a 404 page → while this URL will lead you to the correct page →

How to recover a broken link?

You can recover a broken link by (re)creating content for a page that no longer exist or you can use a 301 redirect to automatically point visitors and search engines to the right page. When using a redirect, it is recommended to use a a permanent 301 redirect, because this will transfer a pretty big amount of the authority from the old page to the new version.

Be specific with your redirects. When possible redirect to relevant pages or categories and don’t just redirect all your (old) URLs to your homepage. Google will, in most cases, ignore the link value when redirecting pages to your homepage.

According to John Mueller form Google:

So the the 301 redirect from all pages to the home page, that would be something that we see as a soft 404s.

The available metrics returned by this tool

  • Total number of broken backlinks.
  • Percentage of Follow backlinks,
    because this should probably have your priority and eventually I would try to recover all interesting relevant links.
  • The number of unique IPs.
  • The URL of the backlink which is pointing to a specific landing page.
  • The landing / destination page (in most cases this will be a 404 page).
  • Anchor text / link text.
  • Ahrefs domain rating,
    To give you an indication of the strength / authority of the backlink.
  • The date, since when the backlink has been detected as a broken link.
  • And finally an overview of the URLs (404 pages) that are receiving backlinks sorted by count.

Related tools


This tool is made possible by:

The Ahrefs API Ahrefs API

SEO Authority tools, SEO Tools

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