Scan Your Site for Bad Links and Increase Your Google Rank!

I was actively browsing forum, and came to a thread where broken links are being discussed. If you don’t know what is is, all I can say it is THE authority site where SEO scientists and Search Engine Engineers are actively discussing everything and anything about well… search engines and all the algorithms that goes with it. Yes, they are also the radar for any slight changes on the algorithms of major search engines such as Google.

broken links google rankings


I’m digressing a little bit already. Anyway, that’s an introduction of Webmasterworld forum for you.

Let’s go back to broken links. The question posted was “Do broken links hurt Google rankings?”.

Here are just some of the feedback I got from that  thread, in no particular order:

– Internal broken links are quite likely a quality issue, always fix those as soon as possible.

– External broken links may not be quite so important, but it’s a good idea to run a check every few months and fix what you can.

– If the backlink breaks because the site changed the URL after the backlink was already in place, then that could cause a ranking drop.

One comment that caught my attention was,

” I think broken outgoing links may well be a quality signal. I recently went through my site with some tool or another and found dozens of broken outgoing links. I fixed them and several weeks later started to see my rankings and traffic creep up.”

And another one wrote,

“yes they affect, broken links and linking to bad neighborhoods ” and then poster gave the link on Google Webmaster Guidelines.

If you have noticed, majority of those who replied on the question “Do broken links hurt Google rankings?”, it can be easily concluded that YES, broken links can hurt your rankings!
Why did I conclude my take on this issue that broken links can deeply hurt your site?

Well, if you have read the Google Webmaster Guidelines, it stated there “Check for broken links and correct HTML.”. That’s it! End of discussion.

The question is, how can you check the links,specifically the broken and bad links of your site?

For incoming links, my suggestion is to use Google Webmaster Tool. Just submit and enroll your site, and Google will do the rest for you.

How about for outgoing links including internal links?

There are various tool that you can find online:

1. If you are using WordPress, you may want to check the Broken Link plugin ( – it check your posts, comments and other content for broken links and missing images, and notify you if any are found.

2. Download Xenu’s Link Sleut application – a Window application that checks websites for broken links. It can work from Windows 95 up to Windows 7, albeit the current version is dated September 2010.

3. A1 Website Analyzer – my favorite tool. It does not not checks for broken links but it reviews your entire website or blogs for errors including but not limited to invalid HTML, misspelled words, invalid CSS code, find duplicate URLs and the best part is, it shows what to improve your site!

Broken links speaks about the quality of a site and the best way to protect yourself against having broken links appear on your site is to check your site regularly. I highly suggest at least once a month. Of course, if you have thousands links, manual checking will be a tedious task on your part so just use some of the tools that I’ve mentioned above.


  • Comment by Erwin |

    Thank you for this valuable info. I will check into this one.

  • Comment by Franc Ramon |

    I haven’t really been PR conscious but will try to check on the link checker as it can help my site speed too.

  • Comment by Fernando Lachica |

    Right now, I’m finishing Google Analytics for my multiple blogs. Since last four months only that I’ve started using this Webmaster Tools of Google and Bing, and also google Tag Manager. A lot of work to do, but I’m positive about the Webmaster Tools. And now, this Bad Links, I have to do this, maybe next week. Thanks for posting this informative article.

  • I did not even think about broken links at all! Thank you for bringing this up front and center. Will definitely check the plugin.

  • Comment by ralph |

    these are nice web tools to use especially for one building a name in the web and fix troubles in your site. thanks. Yahweh bless.

  • Comment by sherlane |

    Thanks for sharing this info. Your post can help website owners a lot. Will try this plugin.

  • Comment by Soumya Roy |

    Broken links definitely down rank a site, I have personally witnessed this with one of my client’s website which has few broken outbound links. Thanks to a blogger friend who notified me that and then we used Xenu to find out and rectify those. And after that we saw good upward movements on our ranking for several keywords.
    After all broken links, internal or external, are bad for user experience and thus bad for SEO as well.
    Good read and thanks for sharing the resources especially A1 Website Analyzer.

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