While I’m contemplating my direction for the next 5 years of my online journey, I decided to play around behind the scenes on a few of my blogs. In doing so I happened upon the plug-in called Broken Link Checker. If you have a WordPress blog and are not already using this plugin, I strongly suggest that you install it
This neat plugin is especially helpful if you have old blogs with lots of posts. Finding all broken links on old blogs is just about impossible. Broken Link Checker continually checks for broken links and sends notification emails when broken links are found.
After testing the plugin on one of my smaller blogs, I installed it here on NJFM. The plugin found over 200 broken links on this site. When you consider that I’ve only got a little over 500 posts, 200 is a rather high percentage of broken links.
As I was fixing the links I realized most of the links came from NJFM’s comment section. It made me realize that I’m not the only one who loses interest after building blogs.
The majority of the broken links were from folks who created a new blog, came here to No Job for Mom and got very involved in the community. Over time they lost interest and allowed their blog’s domain name to expire thus resulting in broken links (this is not a complaint, just an observation).
The People Factor
I think cleaning up broken links improves the reader’s experience. I know I’ve read quality and compelling comments on other blogs only to be later disappointed when I clicked on the commenter’s website link to find that it was a dead end.
I am not an SEO expert but I would think search engines appreciate blogs with current links as opposed to blogs with a ton of broken links. Whether or not fixing broken links improve search engine results remains to be seen, but it can’t hurt.
Broken Link Checker has earned its way onto my favorite WordPress plugins list.