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How to Fix Broken Links in WordPress (2021)

Last Updated on June 18th, 2021

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If you’re looking for ways to fix broken links in WordPress, this post is for you.

As time passes, the website’s outbound links are more likely to guide visitors to pages that no longer exist. Broken links and dead links are all terms used to describe these out-of-date links. 

Do not be alarmed if your website contains broken links; however, it is in your best interest to fix broken website links and either update the URL or delete the link entirely.

In this article, we would like to share with you the best options that are available on how to fix broken links in WordPress. 

A broken link is akin to riding in an elevator that doesn’t go anywhere. You rush in, eager to get to your floor, but it refuses to budge. A broken link is one that does not take you to the page it claims to take you to but instead takes you to a 404 error page. 

When a user clicks on a broken or dead link, a 404 Not Found page may appear. This occurs when the browser is unable to locate the requested web page’s content. The material in this case was either removed or transferred to a new location.

Broken links can be divided into two categories: 

  1. Internal links are links from one page on your WordPress site to another page on your site. An internal connection is, for example, a link from your Home page to your Services page. 
  2. External links are links to other websites from your WordPress account. An external link is, for example, a link from your Products page to an Amazon page.

There are a variety of other reasons for broken links on WordPress pages, including: 

  • The URL has been misspelled. Incorrect URLs can send users to the wrong page or result in 404 errors. 
  • Propagation of the Domain Name System (DNS). Transferring a domain name to a new host will take up to 48 hours and can result in errors on your website. 
  • There will be some downtime, but only for a short period of time. When the server that hosts a website goes down, the site becomes unavailable. 
  • Issues with compatibility. WordPress themes and plugins that are incompatible with your site’s files will cause issues with your URL structure. 
  • The composition of the permalinks has changed. These are the permanent links to your blog posts on your website. Broken links will result from incorrectly changing their structure.

Finding and fixing broken links on your website may seem overwhelming, but there are three important reasons to do so: 

  • Broken links irritate your prospects and clients: If customers are searching for details or attempting to make a purchase and keep having a broken connection, they are unlikely to return to your site. They’ll go to a rival where they can easily make a purchase. 
  • Broken links have an effect on your Google SEO ranking: Customers can abandon your site if they hit a dead end. This increases your bounce rate, which is one of the factors Google considers when determining your search ranking. Google would conclude that users are leaving your site because they were unable to find the information they were searching for, and as a result, your site will be pushed down in the search results. Your page’s potential to be indexed is also harmed by broken ties. A broken link page will not be indexed by the Google Spider, causing your search results to suffer. 
  • You lose money because of broken links: It’s the harsh truth. Customers will not buy from you if they cannot find what they require on your website. If Google believes your website isn’t useful, it won’t show up as a top search result for potential customers. This is why you need to fix these problems before you end up losing money from them. 

Checking for broken links is one of the most time-consuming tasks, especially if you manage a large WordPress site. However, such tests are necessary if you want to keep your site in good shape. Fortunately, there are a few strong tools that will search for broken links for you. 

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We’ll go through four different ways to find broken links in WordPress in the following pages. 

1. Use of Web-based SEO Audit Tool 

Using a web-based SEO audit tool to identify and repair broken links in WordPress is the first approach we suggest. Ahrefs and SEMrush are two of the most common. Both of them come with extremely powerful site audit tools that enable you to search your WordPress site for errors automatically. 


Ahrefs is a well-known backlink and SEO analysis toolkit. It currently stands out from the crowd of similar services by having the largest base of live connections, a massive database, and the fastest index updates. It is continually improving all of its algorithms in order to provide customers with the most up-to-date and accurate backlink data. 

Apart from that, it tries to keep up with all current trends in the world of SEM and SEO and ensures that these trends are reflected in new Ahrefs features.


WordPress Broken Link Checker Plugin - Ahrefs

Simply create a new project, enter the address of your WordPress account, and wait for it to search for it. This could take up to 20 minutes, depending on the size of your web. 

If you’re a Kinsta customer, keep in mind that requests from the user-agent AhrefsBot aren’t counted as billable visits.


After the scan is complete, go to the Reports section to see a list of all the 404 errors that have occurred on your WordPress account. You’ll be able to see all of your site’s broken links, as well as the internal pages where they appear. After that, you should replace any broken ties with the right ones.

internal ages

Broken connections can also be found using the Ahrefs Site Explorer. Simply enter the URL of your WordPress site into Ahrefs Site Explorer, go to the “Backlinks” report, and click “Broken” to see your website’s strongest broken backlinks.

broken backlinks

You can also find broken outgoing links using Ahrefs Site Explorer. 

The first goal on your WordPress site should be to fix any broken internal backlinks. But don’t overlook the issue of broken outgoing links. It’s also aggravating for users when you connect to damaged content or services on other people’s pages. Outgoing connections of high quality are also beneficial to your SEO. 

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Simply enter the URL of your WordPress site into Ahrefs Site Explorer, navigate to the “Outgoing links” report, and select “Broken links.” You will then see the broken external link as well as the post or page on your WordPress site where the link is located.

broken links link type


Semrush is a well-known SEO tool that lets you track a variety of metrics, including brand monitoring and location tracking. It also helps you develop your SEO by allowing you to conduct keyword analysis and website audits.


  • With a free version and a paid version with $119.95 per month.

To use it, you must first sign up for a Semrush account. Then go to the site audit page and type in your site’s URL before clicking the Start Audit button. 

site audit enter domain

Semrush will begin the auditing process and present you with a summary of your site’s analysis. 

site audit

If you click on the URL, you will be taken to a page with more content. 

To find broken links on the web, select the Broken alternative. 

site health

The page will show a list of broken links from your WordPress site’s external and internal pages. 

crawled pages_

Finally, at the bottom of the page, press the Export button to download your crawl report.

Go To SEMRush

2. Use of Google Search Console

Google Search Console is a Google application that allows you to “track, manage, and troubleshoot your site’s appearance in Google Search results.” To begin, you must first verify your website with Google Search Console. Then you can start taking advantage of its functionality, such as broken link detection. 

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  • FREE

Google Search Console provides a Crawl Errors report that shows all the pages that returned a 404 error to Google as part of its functionality:

crawl errors

Go To Gogle Search Console

3. Use of Software for the desktop 

You can find broken links using desktop applications in addition to web-based SEO audit tools. 

Screaming Frog is the most common alternative here, as it is a well-known SEO tool that can be used for free to find broken ties. Windows, macOS, and Ubuntu are all assisted by Screaming Frog. 


  • £149.00 Per Year

Here’s how to use the software to find broken links after you’ve downloaded and installed it. 

To begin, type your website’s URL into the box at the top of the page and click Start:

screaming frog 2

Then, using the Response Codes option, you can filter out 404 pages before using the Inlinks function at the bottom to find links to those 404 pages:

screaming frog 1

Go To Screaming Frog

If your site isn’t very big, you may be able to find broken links using a free online broken link checker tool.

BrokenLinkCheck.com is a good choice here, as it allows you to review up to 3,000 pages for free. 

It’s also very simple to use: simply go to the website, enter your URL, and click Find broken links.

Go To Online Broken Link Checker Tool

While the previous tools are useful for locating broken links on your WordPress site, the WordPress broken link checker plugins mentioned below will assist you in repairing them.

broken link checker download

Broken Link Checker is the most common WordPress plugin for checking for broken links, with over 400,000 active installs. The Broken Link Checker WordPress plugin (BLC) is an essential SEO audit plugin.

For any WordPress blog, this plugin is a lifesaver for removing broken links and fixing redirections and is very handy when you are cleaning up your WordPress site. This plugin finds all broken and redirected links and gives you lots of options to fix them. The plugin is available in English as well as a variety of other languages, which is useful if English isn’t your first language.


  • FREE

Steps to find broken links in your WordPress site using Broken Link Checker.

  • After you install the plugin, it will begin parsing your blogs, bookmarks (also known as blogrolls), and other material for connections. This could take anything from a few minutes to an hour or more, depending on the size of your web. 
  • When the parsing is finished, the plugin will begin testing each connection for functionality. The length of time this takes is determined by the size of your site and the number of links it contains. 
  • Settings -> Link Checker allows you to keep track of the progress and adjust different link checking options. 
broken link checker options
  • To open a page with all of your website’s broken links, click Found X broken links.
broken links 2
  • To patch broken links, select Edit URL or Unlink from the drop-down menu below the broken connection. If you get a false-positive result, you can also ignore, recheck, or label ties as not broken.
broken links

Get WordPress Broken Link Checker Plugin

The Link Checker for WordPress crawls your website and finds broken links and photos using an external service. 

The Link Checker does not care if the links lead to an internal or external URL, unlike search engine tools like the Google Search Console, which only display if a URL on your website is not reachable. All dead links will be discovered by the Link Checker. 

The Connection Checker is compatible with all plugins right out of the box. The costs of computation for your website are also very low because the crawler does all of the heavy liftings and just behaves like a regular user who visits all of your sites at once.


  • With a free version and a paid version starts from 45.00 € to 995 €.
  • To get started, simply download the plugin from the WordPress directory, upload it to your admin dashboard, and trigger it. 
  • When the plugin is turned on, a Link Checker menu will appear in the dashboard.
link checker
  • Click the Check your website option to begin the process.
check your website
  • Select on the Result option to show the site’s report.
result broken links

The report indicates the locations of the broken ties, as well as the post form and status. This makes finding, identifying, and fixing broken links on your web much easier. You can also find broken pictures and videos embedded in every blog post if you subscribe to a premium package.

Get Link Checker

While WordPress plugins provide a convenient way to handle broken links from your admin dashboard, there are a few other options for fixing broken links on your website. 

These approaches would enable you to access your.htaccess file and customize your permalink settings.

Your website’s 404 Page Not Found error can be caused by broken permalinks. This problem can occur for a variety of reasons, including new plugin installs and updates. 

To fix the problem, go to your WordPress dashboard and reset the permalink structure. Go to Permalinks in the Settings menu.

permalink settings

Choose a different permalink structure. If your default setting is Numeric, for example, you can change it to Post name. After that, click Save Changes. 

Return the structure to its default settings and press Save Changes once more. Check to see if this approach worked on your websites. If the issue continues, move on to the next step.

  • Reset the .htaccess File

The.htaccess file is responsible for a variety of WordPress activities, including allowing web server functionality and building redirects. 

As a result, if you have error pages on your website, the issue could be caused by incorrect changes to the.htaccess file. 

You can try replacing the file with default code in this case by following the steps below:

  1. Go to your hPanel then select File Manager.
file manager
  1. Locate the.htaccess file in the public_html folder.
  1. Rename the file with a right-click. .htaccess-trouble, for example.
htaccess rename
  1. By clicking the icon at the top of the page, you can create a new file. The file should be called.htaccess.
htaccess new file
  1. Copy the code and paste it into your new file.
# BEGIN WordPress
<IfModule mod_rewrite.c>
RewriteEngine On
RewriteBase /
RewriteRule ^index\.php$ - [L]
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d
RewriteRule . /index.php [L]
# END WordPress
  1. Click ‘save.’
public html access

This should restore your settings to their default state and correct any errors. Alternatively, you can use an FTP client to complete this task.

Wrapping Up!

Broken links are impossible to prevent for any website owner. Since the pages you linked to no longer exist, a percentage of your outbound connections would break over time. 

Broken links, as previously mentioned, can have a negative effect on your website’s SEO and ranking. However, you can easily fix this by first locating the broken ties and then attempting to repair them.

We hope we have somehow helped you in successfully repairing broken links. See you!

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A team of WordPress experts that love to test out new WordPress related software, WordPress plugins and WordPress themes.