Broken Link Definition & Meaning

What Is a Broken Link?

A broken link is a hyperlink that points to a non-existent URL. Broken links are also known as dead links.

There is a multitude of reasons why a broken link can exist:

  • The hyperlink has a typo.
  • The URL structure changed.
  • The original link to the intended website is no longer supported by its server.
  • The domain’s registration may have lapsed so the URL cannot be fetched.
  • The web page was deleted and delivers a 404 error.
  • The web page was moved without a redirect being put into place to the new URL.

Broken links also come in three types:

Learn more about the SEO Chatter mentorship
  • Broken internal links.
  • Broken external links.
  • Broken incoming links.

It’s important that the internal links on your website are not broken links because they can impact the crawlability of your content by search engine spiders. Also, fixing broken external links makes your website seem more up-to-date and a credible resource for users.

As for broken incoming links, it’s a good practice to log 404 errors for dead links and fix them by redirecting users and search engine crawlers to the correct URL or another relevant page on the site.

Visit the SEO Glossary

Go to the SEO Glossary to find more terms and definitions that relate to the field of search engine optimization.