Missing links can be tricky to track down and eliminate from your site. This lesson should help you to recognize them and take care of them. IDX Broker’s technicians have done research and identified two species of links – absolute and relative.
Just as living things are classified by increasingly narrow categories (from Kingdom to Order to Species) links are also defined in a similar fashion.
A link begins with the protocol, which tells a browser how to read the file. Then come the subdomain and domain, which describe the server location on the Internet. Last we have the path, which points to the file you’re ultimately trying to reach.
Relative links have no domain, subdomain, or protocol. A relative link only includes the path. The rest of the URL is assumed from the current server location.
So, if you’re visiting idxbroker.com and there is a relative link to homes, the link will take you to http://www.idxbroker.com/homes
The problem is that the same relative link on different sites may not take you to the intended destination. That can lead to a missing link.
Relative links are aimless creatures that couch-surf, wherever they are, they call it home. To locate them, they tell you – start wherever you are, go three blocks north and turn right. It’s a great shortcut if you’re at the same location, but absolute links are required if the content is moved elsewhere.
Absolute links give you the full address, including the starting point. They tell you – start at 1st and Main, then go three blocks north and turn right. Locate these URLs anywhere on the Internet and they will work in the IDX Broker environment. IDX Broker pages require absolute links.
If you encounter a missing link, just make sure that it’s absolute, not relative. Aimless URLs are tricky creatures, but they can be tamed.