Why 404 not found is critical for SEO?

Why 404 not found is critical for SEO [updated 2023]

404 is a status code of HTTP that shows that the requested resource is not available on the server.

It is critical for Search Engine Optimization in many ways such as:

User Experience: It affects User Experience for example if a person wants to visit a page and he sees a significant 404 error it feels terrible to the user and ultimately it may happen he will never visit your website in the future.

Broken Links: A broken link is one of the major causes of broken links when it comes to 404 errors. if there is an internal link with a 404 error then a user may not be able to find that resource when he requires it.

Crawling and Indexing: In Google Search Console you will also see 404 errors and it will also make crawling and indexing of the web pages difficult.

PageRank and Link Equity:

Inbound links from other websites are a crucial factor in SEO. When a page returns a “404 Not Found” error, it breaks the flow of link equity (also known as link juice) that would have been passed to that page. This can result in a loss of authority and impact the overall PageRank of your website.

To address the “404 Not Found” error and mitigate its impact on SEO, it’s important to:

  • Regularly check for broken links on your website and fix them promptly.
  • Implement proper redirects (301 redirects) for permanently moved or deleted pages.
  • Customize your 404 error page to provide helpful information and guide users back to relevant content.
  • Monitor your website’s crawl errors through tools like Google Search Console and take appropriate actions to rectify them.
  • Addressing “404 Not Found” errors can improve user experience, maintain a healthy website structure, and enhance your SEO performance.

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