How To Track URL Redirection and 404 Error of your Website

While browsing other websites you may have encountered 404 error pages and sometimes even with your blog pages and that 404 error pages are really irritating, sometimes even more when you are searching for something really important and you get a weird 404 error page. For Blog owners, its one of their nightmares as it increases the Bounce rate and exit rates and decreases/demotivates the search engine to crawl your website.
So in this Guide we have covered the complete A-Z methods, tools and tactics that will help you to easily track and manage the 404 error and redirection links.

What is 404 Errors?

404 error are the broken links which do not exist or has been broken when you make some specific changes in your blog. 404 errors are mostly caused when a link points to something that doesn’t exists.
The 404 errors turns down your readers, increases bounce rates and exits and decreases/demotivated search engine to crawl. One can easily track the 404 error links from their webmasters tools like the Google Webmasters tool or something their favourite. From SEO point of view 404 Error/broken links ( dead links) are dead end (At the World’s End) and it adds negative impact on your blog.Too many 404 links are also informally termed at Link rot and you can read more about it on Wiki page.
So in this we will discuss the possibilities on how are you can easily track and manage 404 error pages for free with the use of some free wordpress plugins and some other tools.
If your blogs are facing the 404 broken links then you may be interested in the guide on how to fix broken links with the use of broken link checker in wordpress

List of Tools/Plugins to check Broken Links

WordPress Plugins

Broken Link Checker
404 to Start
Link Checker
404 Redirection

Online Tools


Desktop/Mac Tools

Integrity (Mac)

Integrity is free and is intended to be no more than a simple but effective link checker. Note that Scrutiny is a more advanced app with features such as managing multiple sites, crawling pages requiring authentication and webmaster tools which go beyond link checking.

• Scans your site checking for broken links
• Checks images as well as all internal and external links
• See problems at-a-glance highlighted in colour. Double-click for more detailed information
• In short, improve your website’s quality and search engine ranking

Xenu’s Link Sleuth (Windows Only)

Xenu’s Link Sleuth is a free Windows app that scans entire websites for broken links. Just provide your blog/website URL and it will take care of the rest.

It runs a comprehensive scan that checks for broken links, images, frames, backgrounds, stylesheets, and scripts, almost everything Xenu can also help you check for duplicate content, missing alt text, page depth, site structure, and more.

Screaming Frog SEO Spider (Windows & Mac)

Screaming Frog is similar to Xenu’s Link Sleuth. It’s a desktop app for Windows, Mac, and Ubuntu and is quite easy to use, just provide your website link and let it handle everything.

Unlike Xenu’s Link Sleuth, Screaming Frog is explicitly intended for site optimization and It dives deeper into page-level elements like heading tags and meta data. Good for SEO and bloggers.

The only downside is that Screaming Frog’s free version limits the number of pages that can be crawled. The licensed version PRO removes that limit, unlocks all configuration options, allows saving/uploading of crawls, adds source code search, and includes customer support.

Conclusion: Which tool is best for you?

Choosing the right tool will depend on your needs. Consider:

  • How complex is your website? Large websites will take longer to scan, and a desktop app may not be up to the challenge and web app may slow down your website/server.
  • What are you trying to accomplish? Search or Fix Are you just looking for broken links, or are you trying to make your website more usable by fixing those broken links?
  • How frequently are you running scans? Is this a recurring task or a one-time audit or fully automatic like the Smarts of SmartActiveBlogger Readers?

In our opinion: We find that Xenu’s Link Sleuth is the best value for Windows users, while Screaming Frog SEO Spider is a close second. Screaming Frog’s license fee is worth the cost if you’re doing a lot of scans on a large website.

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