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Error 404

404 Day – a look at the internet’s most notorious error

Error 404

404 Day – a look at the internet’s most notorious error

Today’s date can be written as 04/04, which has led the US city of Atlanta to claim it as 404 Day, due to this being the city’s area code. That doesn’t mean there aren’t other ways to interpret the occasion, though.

At Engage Web, we interpret it as being all about 404 errors, which you have probably experienced before when navigating around websites, so we thought we’d cover this in today’s blog.

So firstly, what is a 404 error?

If you see a 404 error on your website, it means the web server can’t find the page you have been looking for. Some reasons for this might be that the URL is wrong, there used to be a page at that URL which has now been deleted, or the link is broken.

Why should you care about 404 errors on your website?

Making sure that your website visitors are not presented with a 404 error when navigating around your website is essential. It may result in visitors leaving your website to go to another rival – after all, you would probably do the same in their position, wouldn’t you?

How can you fix 404 errors?

The best way to fix a 404 error is to firstly redirect the page you have deleted (straight after you have deleted the page) so that your users never see the error.

If you’re using the WordPress platform for your website, the easiest way to set up a redirect is to install the ‘Redirections’ plugin, which enables you to easily put in the original URL and then enter the URL that you’d like the user to be redirected to.

Once you have set up the redirect on your website, the best practice is to find where the old URL was linked from (in other pages) and change the link to go directly to the page you have redirected to.

Setting up redirect can also stop search engines flagging up 404 errors in your website’s Google Search Console. At Engage Web, we offer search engine optimisation (SEO) services which include making sure you have no 404 errors. To find out more about our SEO services, get in touch with our team today.

Jonathon Roberts

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