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Fix a Broken Link in Your Email (After You’ve Hit Send)
It’s the nightmare scenario for every email marketer. You send out your eBlast, and then – boom – you realize that the link was wrong.
It’s too late to pull the email back after it starts hitting inboxes. Panic sets in.
Don’t freak out. There are ways to fix a broken link in your email after you’ve hit send.
Here are three things you can do to make this not-so-great situation better.
Redirect the Link
If you created a 404 (page not found) error in a link to your domain, you can use a redirect to fix your broken email link.
If you’re using WordPress (like most B2B web developers), you’ll want to use a 301 redirect. This is a “permanent” redirect, which will send traffic from URL A to URL B 100% of the time as long as it’s in place.
Say you linked to domain.com/lik, when you really wanted domain.com/link.
In this case, you’d set up a 301 redirect from domain.com/lik to domain.com/link. Anyone who clicked the link in your email would end up in the right place without missing a beat.
Technically, 301 redirects are created in the .htaccess file. Unless you’re a developer, stay out of the .htaccess file. It’s hyper-sensitive, and any mistake can take your site down.
Instead, use a third-party plugin like Yoast SEO Premium or Simple 301 Redirects to fix your broken email link.
Just make sure you 301 responsibly. If you redirect something to itself, you’ll create what’s called a 301 loop.
That also takes your site down.
Avoid exotic redirects like 302 and 307. They’re rarely necessary.
Intercept with a Popup
If you linked to an existing, meaningful page on your domain, you can’t just redirect all traffic. But you can try to catch folks when they come in.
Say you wanted to link to domain.com/service-a, but instead sent users to domain.com/service-b. You can’t send everyone trying to read about Service B to Service A.
Instead, try using OptinMonster, a leading provider of popup software.
OptinMonster lets you trigger a popup based on traffic referral. You could build a basic popup saying something like:
Looks like you’re looking for more on Service A. That’s over here!
Include a link, and set your Display Rules to only trigger when:
- Users have entered on the Service B page
- From your email service
Perfect? Heck no. But when you’re scrambling to fix a broken link in your email after it’s been sent, you need to be OK with that.
Say You’re Sorry
If you can’t redirect the link’s destination URL or use OptinMonster – or worse if you linked to another domain – the only option is to say you’re sorry.
Send another email and be up front about the mistake. Make it clear why you’re sending it, and make the desired action obvious.
Subject Line: Oops … wrong link
Body: We accidentally sent the wrong link in the email you just got. Here’s the right one. Sorry about that … we’ll do better going forward.
Not so bad, right? It’s a little embarrassing, sure. But it really isn’t a bit deal in the end.
Above all, if you sent the wrong link in your marketing email, don’t panic. You can try to fix it. And if you can’t, nobody will remember tomorrow.