A 404 Not Found Error can take place on any website, big or small doesn’t matter. When you write blog posts on your WordPress website and publish it then it becomes live for the world to see and the search engines to crawl and list it the search results. But sometimes due to some issues 404 errors can occur.
Why does a 404 error occur?
I have personally seen that a 404 error occurs on a WordPress blog due to several reasons but mostly it is because of the website owner itself. How? You may ask. Let’s take an example.
I wrote a blog post 6 months ago and today I deleted it (or changed its URL) and did not do anything to inform the search engines about this change. I did not add any redirect rule in the .htaccess file too. So all this will result in a 404 error.
This error can also occur for a post/page when a user has bookmarked a page or has visited that post from some other website or social network and not just Google etc. The link could have been shared by you or some other user(s) over time and that link was live anywhere on the internet.
404 error actually occurs at the client-side and because there is an issue with the webpage itself so this shows up.
Everybody hates a 404 page and it should be dealt with immediately as it also affects the SEO of your website too.
How to fix the 404 not found error quickly?
I will tell you this by my personal experience that the best way to get rid of all these errors quickly and easily is by using a plugin called 404 to 301 – Redirect, Log and Notify 404 errors. This is such a wonderful plugin that fixes all the issues instantly.
You can do a couple of changes in the plugin settings so that it works according to your needs. You can redirect all 404 errors through the 301 redirect method to your homepage or any other page on your website. This is very good for SEO purposes too.
This will also help you in retaining your Google rankings too and you won’t see any 404 error in Google webmaster tools.
The following are the features of this plugin.
404 To 301 – Features
- You can redirect errors to any existing page or custom link (globally).
- You can set a custom redirect for each 404 path!
- No more 404 errors on your website. Seriously!
- Translation ready!
- You can optionally monitor/log all errors.
- Exclude paths from errors.
- You can optionally enable email notification on all 404 errors.
- You can choose which redirect method to be used (301,302,307).
- Will not irritate your visitors if they land on a non-existing page/URL.
- Increase your SEO by telling Google that all 404 pages are moved to some other page.
- Completely free to use with lifetime updates.
- Developer friendly.
- Follows the best WordPress coding standards.
How and why did I start using this plugin? Well, I have been creating websites and blogs for a very long time. Due to some really ‘stupid’ so-called community standards of Facebook, some of the posts links were blocked for being shared on the network. So I used to change the URL of the post and get it removed from their block list. But this started resulting in 404 page not found error. And this is why I did some research and came to know about this plugin.
Are you also using this or any other plugin to handle the 404 errors or are you doing the traditional and lengthy way of getting rid of this issue? Do let us know in the comments below.