Double Check Your Links
While this tip seems like a no-brainer, broken links are a very common around the blogosphere. People are always proofreading and paying attention to the text, but rarely they check all the links inside the articles.
If you don’t want to look dumb (and this is coming from my personal experience…) make sure that all your links are working properly. Just create a ritual to double check them before publishing every post.
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16 Responses to “Double Check Your Links”
I agree. I always forget to check the important links, then a day later I check them and realize they’re broken 🙂
That kind of thing does make you look stupid heh.
Checking links just seems like common sense. It should be but I have forgotten to do it several times, including an email campaign that linked back to a landing page for a sale I had.
I felt like a complete moron for wasting my and the readers time.
The problems that annoy me are when someone posts links to a homepage that features an article on that day, but of course a day later there are new articles and the one linked to has disappeared to another page.
There’s also the historical links that point to sites which have changed the location of a page. Should we be going back in our blogs to check previous external links and see if they are still up to date? Are there tools that will do that for us?
I recommend running Xenu every few months to check your links for validity. It’s freeware (just google it) and very easy to use and thorough.
I like to use the 404 notifier alexking plugin’s RSS feed which, at times overwhelming, is helpful sometimes for picking out strange errors I didn’t think about: http://alexking.org/blog/2006/11/20/404-notifier-10
Amos, yeah posting links that point to pages that are not permanent is another annoying issue.
I heard about Xenu sometime ago, will download and play with it now, thanks for sharing.
Will check that plugin also, thanks Sam.
Thanks for the reminder. I get very frustrated when I click on a link and it gets me nowhere. I don’t want people getting frustrated with me if it is something simple like I should have checked my links.
This is something that I make sure I get right the first time. I always copy and paste links, and 99% of the time I’ll open a new tab and make sure that the link I’m posting is the one that I want to give the reader.
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This sort of thing is what makes me scared to update my theme. Depending on my theme, i might break all my links. PARANOIA City, right?
Dave Starr — ROI Guy
Those who use Firefox don’t need to download and install any third-party software … there is an excellent odd on (exstenson) for FireFox called, interestingly enough, LinkChecker by Kevin Freitas:
Just auto-install it like any other FireFox add on, drag it’s check mark icon to the tool menu (if you want yo) and click it before posting something with important links … it’s surprising how many links there are on a modern bog theme … painless way to eliminate one source of embarrassment, anyway..
Dave, I will check that extensions. Thanks a lot.
Dave Starr — ROI Guy
NP, Daniel, hope it will work for you. That’s why I love FireFox, you can make it do early anything you need it to.
Good tip. I have probably messed up a link or two on the random occasion. Usually, I double check them after I publish the post. If I find a problem, then I fix it right after the initial post.
Dave Starr — ROI Guy
Playing about with some of the features that have been added to LinkChecker I see there’s another, more “sneaky” use for it … ever been on someone’s sales page and wondered how they dealt with their traffic, how they expected people to respond, etc.? Well links are sometimes hidden or cleverly disguised. Just run LinkChecker and you see right away where the links are. Sometimes has proven interesting to me.
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