I just finished running a broken link check on our BiggerPockets Blog and it seems that in the 6 months that have passed since the last check, we’ve accumulated almost 500 dead links.
The vast majority of the dead links were from:
- Links to news articles that no longer exist on major sites like CNN, Yahoo News, etc.
- Comment links from people whose websites no longer exist.
- Pings from blog articles that no longer exist.
Additionally, there are quite a few links to articles that have been moved because the website changed their link/directory structure.
SEO Tip: If you’re not using 301 redirects to send visitors to the new location of your content, you’re losing traffic, link juice, and potentially new links from the same sites that have to remove the dead links that you failed to upkeep.
The bottom line is, help keep the web clean by making sure your old, non-functional links point somewhere other than a 404 page. And if you don’t, at least make sure you’ve got a good 404 page that’s useful and memorable
In case you’re wondering how to find and fix those links, here’s a great writeup.