How To Fix A 404 Error

How To Fix A 404 Error – Among the many potential errors that can appear on your WordPress site, the 404 Not Found error is one of the most troublesome. But that doesn’t mean you or your visitors can’t get frustrated if they’re getting 404 not found messages when trying to browse your site. Something you don’t want to see. A 404 error can also indicate that something has been changed or moved, and you may need to add a 301 redirect for SEO.

This post will explain a few things that will help you get your site working again.

How To Fix A 404 Error

How To Fix A 404 Error

A 404 (Not Found) status code indicates that the origin server could not find an existing representation of the target resource or is unwilling to indicate that it exists. A 404 status code does not indicate whether this lack of representation is temporary or permanent. A 410(gone) status code is preferred over a 404 if the origin server knows, perhaps through some configuration means, that the state is likely to be persistent.

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Every time you or someone you visit a website, your browser sends a request to the web server and receives data called an HTTP header. The HTTP header contains an HTTP status code that describes “what happened” with the request.

How To Fix A 404 Error

Most of the time the request works perfectly and I actually get the HTTP status code (

, the web browser usually displays a message with an HTTP status code that indicates the exact problem.

How To Fix A 404 Error

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Like other error messages (500 error, 502 error, 503 error, 504 error, etc.), the error 404 not found message is the result of this process.

Even if your web server is working properly, your visitors will see a 404 error because the required resource is not available.

How To Fix A 404 Error

In addition to posts and pages, missing assets such as missing image files, missing JavaScript, or missing CSS can cause 404 errors on the server.

How To Fix The Error 404 Not Found

If you’re seeing this error for all content on your site, it’s usually due to permalink issues on your WordPress site. However, if it only appears on individual pieces of content, it is most likely to change the content slug without setting up a redirect.

How To Fix A 404 Error

Additionally, a 404 error is not necessarily a bad thing. It’s only bad if it’s a hindrance to use. And sometimes things are out of your control!

For example, you can simply enter the wrong URL in the address bar. You will still get a 404 error in this case, but there is nothing wrong with your site configuration. This is actually the desired response and you can create your own custom 404 page to redirect visitors to the correct location (

How To Fix A 404 Error

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Different browsers display error messages differently, so you may see different messages for this error. Other common differences are:

The error 404 not found message is also unique in that many sites actually create custom pages to deal with the error rather than displaying one of the above messages. Some WordPress themes also include a custom 404 page by default. As a result, many sites substitute a funny or creative 404 page, and may not actually display the error message.

How To Fix A 404 Error

Below is an example of our own 404 page. A search box and some recent blog posts are included to help contributors find what they are looking for. Always include a search function on your 404 page.

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Error 404 Not Found has no inherent negative impact on SEO. However, depending on why the error is occurring, it can be harmful.

How To Fix A 404 Error

For example, if a visitor just mistypes the URL and gets a 404 error, it won’t hurt your SEO. However, individual errors due to broken URLs interfere with Google’s ability to crawl your site properly, which negatively affects your SEO.

Additionally, if permalink issues are causing site-wide 404 errors, Google may not be able to crawl your site’s content. In other words, always fix as many 404 errors as possible.

How To Fix A 404 Error

Not Found Nginx

What many people don’t realize is that sites that generate a lot of 404 errors usually don’t cache those responses, making them prone to performance issues. This is common on large sites and can be a big problem if you accidentally advertise it on a 404 page or get a viral traffic boost. Automatically cache 404 pages for 15 minutes to reduce the impact of 404 requests on your site’s performance. When you create a new page with the same URL as the cached 404 page, the cache is automatically cleared so that your visitors can view the new page immediately. This means your site is protected from PHP and CPU spikes caused by traffic on dynamic 404 pages.

You may be generating more 404 errors than you think! Our mine analysis tool can help you determine the exact amount (see below).

How To Fix A 404 Error

You can also quickly see what the top 404 errors are. In the example below you can see that some mobile icons are missing from the site.

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These are often requested in the code of the theme or plugin, but no actual icon is added. So the server is unable to locate the resource and thus generates a 404 error.

How To Fix A 404 Error

You can also check Google Search Console for 404 errors or install a third-party plugin like Redirect that logs 404 errors. However, be aware that such plugins also affect performance. It is much better to rely on server-level tools, because we provide these tools to all our customers.

The reason these errors are bad is that many 404 pages are too broad. For larger sites, avoid large 404 pages. Create a simple 404 template if possible to avoid further queries to the database.

How To Fix A 404 Error

How To Fix The 404 Page Not Found Error In WordPress?

Below, we’ll discuss a few different ways to fix the 404 Not Found error, depending on whether it’s happening on your site or with specific content.

If you’re getting a 404 error on your site when trying to access content, the most likely cause is a permalink (or .htaccess file if your host uses Apache) problem. For the client, we are using Nginx, so we can control the .htaccess files as much as possible.

How To Fix A 404 Error

The easiest way to fix this is to update your permalink settings from your WordPress dashboard. All you need to do is go to Settings → Permalinks and click Save Changes (no need to change anything, just click Save Changes is enough).

How To Fix 404 Not Found Error In WordPress

Then, when users tried to access the content in the old location, they got a 404 page instead of the expected resource. The best way to fix this is to automatically redirect anyone trying to access the old location to the new location. That way you can get to the right place without the 404 error. It is also good for SEO. If you add a redirect without moving or renaming a post, you lose all domain authority associated with backlinks pointing to that post.

How To Fix A 404 Error

By default WordPress tries to redirect modified/moved content. However, this does not always work and you should not rely on WordPress for this functionality. There are several easy ways to set up redirects in WordPress.

First, you can manage your redirects from your WordPress dashboard using our free redirect plugin. After installing and activating the plugin, go to Tools → Redirects and enter the URL of your 404 page in the Source URL box and the new location of your content in the Target URL box.

How To Fix A 404 Error

How To Find And Fix A 404 Error On Your Website

If you are hosting, you can also manage your redirects from your My Dashboard. Using tools is actually a better approach as the rules are applied at the server level. This is the best method in terms of performance. It also means one less third-party plugin to worry about.

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How To Fix A 404 Error

Go to the site you manage. Then click the Redirects tab. To add a new redirect, click the big Add Redirect Rule button.

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Finally, if your host uses an Apache server, you can set up redirects using .htaccess. The .htaccess generator site will help you generate the correct code to add to your site’s .htaccess file.

How To Fix A 404 Error

While you can do your best to prevent 404 errors by following the tips above, it’s impossible to completely eliminate 404 errors. It is not uncommon for small WordPress sites to experience thousands of 404 errors per month.

For example, if a visitor mistypes a URL, or if another website links to a page that doesn’t exist, people will get a 404 error no matter what.

How To Fix A 404 Error

How To Fix A 404 Page Not Found Error

You can use multiple 404s to provide a more user-friendly error page.

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