Broken Link building what ?

Broken Link building what ? Unconventional link building strategy for medium-long term results In SEO, and in web marketing in general, what is more discussed, controversial and essential than link building

Broken Link building what ?

In SEO, and in web marketing in general, what is more discussed, controversial and essential than link building ?

A good backlink can turn into pure gold in your hands, and give a significant boost to your search engine ranking strategy.

At this point, a spontaneous question arises: how do you recognize a good backlink? Here are some features that should never be missing:

  • It must be relevant . It is quite useless to earn backlinks from sites with different themes from yours, first of all for the objective difficulty in obtaining it, secondly for the absence of value that the link would give to the reader. For similar reasons it would also be appropriate (but not necessary) that the linking page and the linked page had the text in the same language.
  • It must come from an authoritative source . Google has declassified PageRank, this does not mean that a link from or Wikipedia now has the same value as a link from a pirate site.
  • Must donate trusts . Are nofollow links worth nothing? No, that's not quite the case. Do follow links definitely affect the ranking of the linked page? Yes, definitely yes.
  • It must be placed in the "hot" areas of the page . The more visible a backlink is, the more likely it is that the user will click on it, the more it has a "weight" in Google's consideration.

Why you should use Broken Link Building as part of your link building strategy

Let's make it clear that broken link building shouldn't be the only link building tactic you use. It should be a tactic within a broader strategy - regularly analyzing and exploiting available opportunities can help you gain a real competitive advantage.

Besides reaching and earning backlinks for the new content you've written, why should you work on broken link building? By taking advantage of broken links, you can:

  • Create links on pages that already have authority

  • Build links from relevant content, supporting the visibility and growth of landing pages 

  • Inherit links that previously pointed to competitors (or at least related content) and leverage that authority to drive your SEO strategy forward

  • Integrate other link building tactics as opportunities arise

The links you get by commenting on other sites or in blogs, or even by signing the site of some customer, "make up" but apart from the number of links, these links to your site, taken individually, do not significantly shift the ranking . .

Then there are some rather particular niches in which you are unable to follow these "low cost" strategies, and you have to work your brain incessantly to find the most valid opportunities.

In this post I want to describe one of the most refined and unconventional link building strategies , undoubtedly onerous and difficult, but able to guarantee flattering results in the medium to long term.

This is the Broken Link Building, an SEO technique that allows you to exploit a physiological phenomenon of the Web ( broken links , in fact), to obtain high quality backlinks.

Broken link building is divided into 3 different phases:

1. Research phase

If you are trying to rank a page or website, you will also have target target keywords . The same keywords are the track to follow in this arduous mission to gain backlinks, and represent the levers to stay in the sowing of thematic relevance .

At this point one should start searching on Google with the various keywords and then go through all the results. A huge job, luckily someone has thought about the desperate loneliness of SEO by creating tools that automate this whole process. Their name is SERP Scraper and here I recommend:  Simple Scraper Tool  (you can download it  here ), and   Screaming Frog's SEO Spider .

The SERP Scraper on duty will need to provide a list of keywords and the number of results per SERP you want to spool. I advise you not to overdo the searches, hide behind a proxy or in any case configure a delay of 30-60 seconds between one search and another, otherwise you risk getting your IP blacklisted, temporary or not, and compromising the your job.

2. Analysis phase

Analyzing search results is laborious and, I say this clearly, it will not always give you back link prospects.

In summary, you will have to sift through the results returned by the SERP Scraper and find broken links within them , or references to web pages that no longer exist, those that if you try to navigate the browser will respond with an error code HTTP 404 (not found) . This is a phenomenon that can happen, on the other hand a resource can cease to be available for various reasons, and not everyone is ready to correct their links, especially if no one reports them to them!

To fiddle with this phase I suggest a couple of tools:  Broken Link Checker , a Chrome extension that parses the page you are currently browsing by highlighting broken links, or the free  Seo google Analytics broken link Checker tool free, more suitable for massive checks. I prefer the latter, which manages to save me some time.

During this process you will surely find broken links, but they will almost always be of little value : expired accounts or domains, links to articles on topics that are no longer current, even obsolete. Nothing that would affect your link builder purposes. 

Proposal phase

Carefully analyze the text and theme of the page hosting the link, the link's anchor text , use the Google cache or the Wayback Machine to retrieve the page that no longer exists and get an idea.

At this point, honestly answer the following question: do you have a content that can replace that page in the same link?

If so, you can move on to the last paragraph of this phase, otherwise you will have to make another decision, which is to produce content that is eligible for replacement and publish it within the site you are trying to position.

Onerous, right? Of course, but I'm assuming that you already know this, and that the link you are aspiring to is from a particularly authoritative site , one of the very first results of the SERP for your reference keyword. The effort must be well spent, it is not worth doing it to insert any link. Do not copy (obviously) the content of the page that no longer exists, but keep it in the original trace, perhaps enriching it or updating it with the latest developments.

Here is a standard email template to send:

Dear XX,

While browsing for some information on Y I came across your site / page.

You have put together a large number of very useful resources and tools, congratulations!

I wanted to point out that you have a link in 404:


I thought it would be useful for you to know to fix it, since Google takes this into account.

In this regard I wanted to point out a resource that I wrote and that maybe you could use instead of the one in error, if you like.

Find it here:


And if you also want to give me some feedback on the contents of the site, I would really appreciate your opinion!

In any case, congratulations again for your work.


You have a good work