Often called ‘dead link building’ by SEO services, broken link building (BLB) is a technique or strategy that finds out a link from an inactive site, and asks for a link to your own site. It has mostly been seen that when a user clicks on a dead link, he or she ends up on a 404 page, thereby earning a bad reputation for the website.
While most people consider it as a narrow and straightforward strategy, the real picture is quite different. BLB can actually provide you with more avenues to get creative than any other link building strategy.
Yes, you can continue with looking for broken links (BLs) on link pages and blogrolls, and request the webmaster to replace one with your link; but you can actually go much further than this.
Following are certain out-of-the-box strategies for effective broken link building:
Have you ever heard of secondary link building? You can use it effectively with BLB. If you have already got a link from a site that you are targeting or you find a link to be fishy that could send spam signals, you may ask for a link to a website or post already linking back to you instead. This is the most popular way of finding BLs. If it still passes you value, go through the links in your site. However, here, you need to make one thing clear, which you can change only in some cases, i.e. a highly reputable post or site should act as the replacement link.
In order to get attention, finding two links somewhere in the website is enough. A B like “in”. “in” can be a value-adding reason to get in touch with someone and it also works as a fix for grammar and spelling. Once you get one, you get an opportunity to grab someone’s attention. This way, the success rate may not be high but it is definitely better than finding a BL on that specific page that you want to link from.
Make sure that you maintain a record of the URLs of the BLs which you have fixed. Whenever you find a broken URL, plug them to OSE in order to find other places linking to it. Get the CSV exported and start maintaining a master spreadsheet. For example, you have found 20 BLs; plug them into OSE to find who is linking to them. Say, you find a total of 200 pages linking to them, with one extra BL in each page. This way, your list will increase with 220 broken URLs. You need to rinse and repeat it in order to get your spreadsheet built.
It is not that a broken link is only used for getting links, it can also be used to contact someone or build a relationship with regard to other link opportunities like guest posting or other crowd source apps. Actually, it is entirely dependent on you; if you want to use BLs for more than one time, you should take advantage of these opportunities for better BLB.
It is not rare to come across a site that is entirely broken, and if you find it to have decent link equity, it is a golden opportunity for you to utilize. Add it to your master spreadsheet and connect the website to SEO to find their top pages to find out the link equity. After this, you can make use of wayback machine for finding what those pages consist of. It is a very good way to save on time. For doing this, you simply need to drag the link to the Wayback option in your toolbar.
I hope these actionable strategies will be helpful to you in capitalizing on broken links.