Broken Links and SEO Rankings

Phew! I just finished removing all the broken links from this website. It would have been a fairly small undertaking if not for the blog. The blog creates hundreds of pages and the broken links can appear in comments, posts, sidebars and all sorts of hidden files. And since broken link checkers report all sorts of anomalies, such as RSS links, the list to wade through is quite large.

But it is worthwhile. A website that points to a lot of broken links is one that is not maintained. Put quite simply, if Google has the option of listing two equally relevant websites for a particular search, why would it list the one that appears not to be as up-to-date. I have no empirical evidence to show that broken links hurt ranking (if you do, please let me know), but common sense says that somewhere in the algorithm broken links play a role.


  1. I Agree with you… do you recommend any specific broken links checker tool?

  2. Most of the free broken link checkers are pretty useless, because you have to do one page at a time. That’s OK for a brochure site, but not for a content site. I use Xenu ( ) which is pretty good. It might not be the best, so if anyone else has a suggestion for checking broken links, please leave a comment.

  3. Hey David,

    Just found your post as I am having the same problem with broken links within one of my sites.

    Now the only way I could tell was from google webmasters tools which i run my site through. Very simple set up, input your Web address verify you site either with a mega tag or html code.

    Add you site map and google will crawl your site and report back any problems it finds with your site. (may that a few days to report back)