Is Getting a 404 Error Bad for Your Website
A 404 error is a sight neither a webmaster wants to see or a visitor wants to look at.We regularly update our websites and play along with a lot of plugins which are available in the market.In this process if we are not careful or do not maintain our links then they might start showing up as errors and cause trouble.
What Is a 404 Error
Lets be honest here we all have sort of a vague idea about the 404 error but then we do not exactly know its full meaning.To be quite simple it is a not found error,404 error tells us that the browser connected to the server successfully but the content or the page you requested is not available.Maybe your content has moved or even worse got deleted by mistake.well these things do have some bad repercussions when it comes to google page rankings and even the SEO as the website indexing and ranking does infact depend on individual pages within that website so it is quite important that you are careful.
Biggest Issues Faced with a 404 Error not found
Googles’s stance on this topic is pretty clear and they say that :
“404s are a perfectly normal part of the web… In fact, we actually prefer that, when you get rid of a page on your site, you make sure that it returns a proper 404 or 410 response code (rather than a “soft 404”).”
Which means that if you are wanting to get rid of a page then it is necessary for that page to send a 404 Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) standard response code back to the google crawlers or any other web-spiders,this will tell them to start deindexing that page and eventually get rid of it.
But if a webpage which is important and it starts showing an error then few of the many issues faced are:
1. You will certainly slip in search engine rankings and might lose significant page rank because of it and recovering from that will be a hard task.
2. If a visitor is looking for a particular page on your website and is greeted with a blank page then it is pretty bad for your company.
3. Think of it like this if a web crawler crawls your website and there is a roadblock in its way then they cant move any further which will result in drop in rankings.
4. It also gives a feeling that you are not well maintaining your site and the content published in it is old and stale thus most of the search engines will stop giving you relevance due to the 404 error and is a big issue.
5. Your bounce rates will increase as the people who are landing on your page will leave leave pretty fast.
How Do I Fix the 404 Errors
It is not a very tough task to fix all of your 404 errors,you need to make sure that you have a list of all the backlinks which are pointing towards the broken page,secondly we need to perform a 301 redirect which tells the browser has moved to a new address permanently and wont affect the SEO.
Thus you can use a redirection plugin and either do a bulk redirect or can individually redirect them to their new links.Thus with the 301 redirect we let the link juice flow to the new address.
But be careful with the 301 redirects as unnecessarily redirection can result in a penalty and keep in mind that for the pages which you want to be gone then just let them 404.
That is all guys,i hope you learned with this post and please do not hesitate to ask a question down below.