What is Link Checker?

Link Checker is an umbrella term for a set of tools and reports in Ahrefs. They help with finding broken and harmful links on your website.

You should make every effort to fix these because both internal (pointing to other pages on your site) and external (pointing to pages on other sites) broken links contribute to a poor user experience. That’s also true of unnecessary redirects (3XX) and redirect chains.

Dead pages on your site are also bad news. They waste “link equity” and can have an adverse effect on rankings.

There are two main tools in Ahrefs to help you find and fix these problems:

  • Site Audit

    Crawls your website to find internal and external links. It checks the HTTP status for all of them.

  • Site Explorer

    Provides a complete breakdown of your website’s link profile, including broken and harmful links to and from your site.

Industry-leading links database

Ahrefs boasts the largest live backlinks database in the industry:

  • 15.5 trillion

    Internal Backlinks

  • 1.9 trillion

    External Backlinks

  • 190 million

    Unique Domains

Ahrefs also has the second most active crawler after Google, allowing us to update our backlinks database with fresh data every 15-30 minutes.

This means we report new broken links as and when they appear.

Find broken outgoing links

See a list of all broken outbound links on any website with the Broken Links report in Site Explorer.

Find broken outgoing links

You can even zoom in on a particular part of your website (subdomain, exact URL, etc.) to hone in on specific broken links. Just choose the URL or Prefix option from the drop-down.

Find broken pages on your website

See every broken page on your website by adding a “404 not found” filter to the Best by Links report in Site Explorer.

Find broken pages on your website

By default, all dead pages are sorted by URL Rating (UR).

You should prioritize the fixing of high-UR broken pages above others because they waste the most “link equity.”

Check for suspicious outbound links

See a list of all the sites you’re linking to with the Linked Domains report in Site Explorer.

Check for suspicious outbound links

This list can be filtered (e.g., for “dofollow” links only) and sorted in various ways.

You can even filter for specific TLDs to hone in on links that are most likely to be spammy.

filter for specific TLDs

Linking out to irrelevant and low-quality content can have an adverse effect on your credibility and hence, rankings.

A manual investigation is the best way to find and remove spammy looking links.

Schedule regular crawls to stay informed about new broken links

Finding broken links is also a breeze with Ahrefs’ Site Audit.

To see broken external links, click the External pages report and look for “External 4XX” issues.

Schedule regular crawls to stay informed about new broken links

To see broken internal links, click the Internal pages report and look for “404 page” issues.

Schedule regular crawls to stay informed about new broken links

Here’s how Ahrefs’ Site Audit differs from Site Explorer:

  • Live Crawl Feature: Run a live crawl for a comprehensive view of your website’s internal and external links. Links that you see are as up-to-date as it gets.

  • Scheduling Feature: Schedule regular crawls (weekly, bi-weekly, monthly, etc.) and get alerted to broken internal and external links on your site right away.

Find redirects (3XX) and redirect chains

Redirects (3XX) help to keep your site’s hard-earned rankings on track after making changes to your content. That is, as long as they're well implemented.

Improperly implemented redirects can cause the following issues:

  • Makes it difficult for search engines to crawl your site, which affects how well your pages are indexed.

  • Slows down your site’s load speed, which contributes to a poor user experience and can negatively impact rankings.

  • Results in lost link equity, which can hurt your rankings and traffic.

Keep a tab on all your redirects by looking for “3XX redirect” and “redirect chain” issues in the Internal pages report in Ahrefs’ Site Audit.

Find redirects (3XX) and redirect chains

Try Ahrefs now

Use Ahrefs’ Link Checker to check your website’s broken links now!

Start 7-day trial for $7