The broken link building process includes fixing the links leading to the dead-end pages or pages showing 404 errors from a website you wish to get links from.
There are various reasons why a link may be broken like
- The linking website made some mistake with the URL
- The website that is linked has shifted the page temporarily or removed it permanently.
Either way, the webmaster has failed to notice that there are broken links on his website, and he would want to replace them or remove them.
Here comes your role, and the broken link building process starts. Research and explore pages having broken links, create content relevant to the one linked, and get your link in place of that link!
It might sound confusing and chaotic, but it becomes easier and interesting once you get hold of the concepts.
In this guide, we will be sharing a detailed explanation of the broken link building process.
Broken Link Building Process and Link Building Tactics
The broken link process involves mainly three steps, and all the steps are equally important for effective broken link building strategies
Step Number 1 : Researching and Finding Broken Links
The first step is the most arduous task. This step takes the maximum time and is the most complicated.
First, find out potential prospects from where you want links.
Finding out potential links with which you can replace yours can be done in various ways :
1. Using tools
There are many tools available that help you directly find broken links from your prospect’s.
Ahref: Ahref’s site explorer features where you can directly find broken links for any domain. There are two ways to do so
Search for the domain/website> Go to backlinks profile at the left menu > Click on broken links. You’ll find a complete list of broken links on the mentioned domain.
Search for the domain/website> Go to pages option on the left menu > Click on the best by links option > from the HTTP code dropdown, click 404 not found, and you will get the desired results.
Check My Links: This is another convenient tool to find broken links. Install the extension from Google. It will appear on the top right corner of Chrome, and just clicking on it will get all the broken links on that page.
Screaming Frog : Follow this process to get the list of broken links of a website.
Search for the website domain > Click on response code when the search gets completed > from the filter dropdown, click client error (4xx), and bingo!
2. Using search strings
This tactic involves finding out broken links building opportunities for a particular keyword. For doing so, you have to find “ resource pages”, i.e. pages with many links where you expect at least some links will be broken.
This method is also known as the search scraping/scraping resource pages method.
With the help of relevant keywords, use different search strings (inurl, intext, intitle) to maximize the results and find resource pages relevant to your niche. Few examples are
KEYWORD intitle:”links” inurl:”resources”
3. Using Wikipedia
Another great way to find broken links is Wikipedia. There are three ways to find broken links from Wikipedia.
- From the articles directly mentioning there are broken links.
- From search strings : [site:”wikipedia.org” “your niche/keyword” intext:”dead link”
- A tool specifically designed to find link building opportunities with Wikipedia.
Step Number 2 : Re-Creating the Dead Content
Now that you have finally managed to find potential prospects to get quality backlinks from, it’s time to create note-worthy content.
You might think that you already had the content to start the broken link building campaign in the first place.
But you must consider writing content relevant to where the broken links were pointing at, or atleast edit and update your content.
This ensures that your content is considered for replacement after all the hard work you have done to find the dead pages.
Must Read : Useful Content Marketing Tactics
Step Number 3 : Outreach
By now, you have done a masterful job at finding dead links and creating first-class content for replacement.
But unless you show the prospects what you have got in a right and considerable manner, all your hard work will be in vain.
Here are a few tips that might help you get through this process softly.
Learn E-Mail Marketing for successful email outreach campaigns.
1. Don’t sound desperate
Sounding desperate and pushy can greatly affect your personality and get your mail landed in the junk box. Be at ease and try to connect with your email. Rather than demanding to get linked (replace that link with mine), give them a suggestion (here is a replacement that you might like for the dead link) to be on good terms.
2. Find the right person
If your prospect is a big company, sending a mail to the CEO is completely useless. Instead, find out who the team members are and who is in charge of the blog/content or the content manager. This greatly increases the chance to get notices.
If it’s a single-person blog website or a small company, you can still think of writing to the top-level managers.
Broken-link building is a white-hat link building technique under digital marketing and is extremely effective and scalable if done in the right way.
The conversion rate of getting links is a bit lower in dead link building; aim to maximize the outreach.
As, it is a highly effective and value-adding link building technique for SEO, in order to double-up the results, reach out to professional SEO agency who provide broken link building services.