Crownpeak Employee
Crownpeak Employee

Do not use meta refresh tags


This meta tag sends the user to a new URL after a certain amount of time, and is sometimes used as a simple form of redirection. However, it is not supported by all browsers and can be confusing to the user. See WCAG 1.0, 7.4. The W3C also recommends that this tag not be used.

Meta refresh tags have some drawbacks:

  • There can be a usability problem if the redirect happens quickly (less than 2-3 seconds). This prevents users of older browsers from using the “Back” button.
  • If the redirect happens quickly and goes to a non-existant page, your readers may get stuck in a loop without seeing any content other than a 404 page. 
  • Refreshing the current page can be confusing. If a user didn’t request the reload, they may become concerned about your site's security.


Affects Accessibility, SEO Non-compliant pages will fail WCAG 1 Level AA. "Until user agents provide the ability to stop the refresh, do not create periodically auto-refreshing pages" (WCAG 1 Priority 2)
Technical Details For this checkpoint we will scan through the page to see if there is an existence of the meta refresh tags - <meta http-equiv="refresh" content="30"> - if this tag exists then it will be flagged as an error.

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