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Broken Links in Siteimprove

Addressing broken links promptly is important to maintain the quality of our content and create the best possible experience for our users.

Broken Links Training Video

The following training video covers the basics of broken links in Siteimprove, including accessing the Broken Links Report, identifying the pages containing a broken link, and viewing a broken link in context on a page [video length: 00:02:54].


Broken Links Report

Accessing the Broken Links Report

The Broken Links Report can be accessed from the Dashboard using the "Broken links" button or through the Quality Assurance menu item (Quality Assurance > Links > Broken Links).

Broken links can be accessed from the dashboard (left) or the Quality Assurance menu (right).

Broken links can be accessed from the dashboard (left) or the Quality Assurance menu (right).


Understanding the Broken Links Report

From the Broken Links Report, you can see a list of all broken links in your section, along with the reason the link is flagged as broken (HTTP status), how many clicks the broken link has received since it was flagged as broken, the number of pages the broken link appears on, and the date the broken link was first detected, as shown below.

The Broken Links Report will show you a listing of all the broken links in your section along with when the link was detected, the reason for the broken link, and how many pages are affected.

The Broken Links Report will show you a listing of all the broken links in your section along with when the link was detected, the reason for the broken link, and how many pages are affected.


Viewing Pages Affected by a Broken Link

To see a listing of the pages (or page) affected by a particular broken link, click on the number or down arrow in the Pages column, as shown below.

View the pages affected by a broken link by clicking on the number or down arrow in the Pages column.

View the pages affected by a broken link by clicking on the number or down arrow in the Pages column.


Viewing the Broken Link on a Page

To see a broken link in context on a page, click on the page title. You will then see the page in question with the broken link highlighted and outlined in red.

Clicking on the page title will open up a Page Report with the broken link outlined and highlighted in red.

Clicking on the page title will open up a Page Report with the broken link outlined and highlighted in red.

Note: If a broken link is in an accordion piece of content, you'll have to use the Show HTML button to see where on the page it occurs.


About the Broken Link

In the side column of the Page Report, there will be a description of the broken link occurrence(s), including the HTTP status code. The HTTP status code can help you determine if the link is truly broken, or if the page in question is only temporarily down.

Common HTTP Status Codes

Can't Resolve Hostname
Can't Resolve Hostname

An error of Can't Resolve Hostname usually means that the URL of the link is misspelled or incorrectly entered in some way. You may also get this error if you accidentally link to the preview version of a page on our site.

Check for any errors in the URL you've entered and make the appropriate adjustments.

403: Forbidden
403: Forbidden

A 403: Forbidden error means the request to access a page was denied for some reason.

This error will sometimes pop up even when a link does not appear broken. The most common reason this happens is that the link you are using starts with http:// instead of https:// (note the "s). Try updating your URL to point to the https:// version of the URL.

404: Not Found
404: Not Found

A 404: Not Found error usually means that a page no longer exists or has moved. You will definitely need to update the URL on your page or remove the link to fix this error. Try Googling the page you are linking to and see if there is an updated URL for it.

500: Internal Server Error
500: Internal Server Error

A 500: Internal Server Error is a very general error indicating that something is wrong with the link. This is sometimes a temporary error and does not always mean that the link in question is completely broken.

Try visiting the page in question to see if it loads. If it does, you can use the "Dismiss for now" option. This will allow Siteimprove to continue checking the link, but will not flag it as broken going forward unless the HTTP status for the page changes.


Fixing Broken Links

Once you have identified where a broken link is occurring in your section, log into T4 and make the appropriate change. This may mean deleting the link if you can't find an updated URL.

Remember, even if you go into T4 and fix the broken link right away, your content may not be approved immediately and/or the site may not have published yet. This is very annoying for those of us who like instant gratification. You'll probably have to wait until the next Siteimprove report to see that the broken link has been fixed.