How to detect and redirect 404 errors

To prevent your visitors from seeing the 404 page too often, it can be useful to keep track of the URLs that produce 404 errors in the first place. For some of those URLs you should set 301 redirects, so your visitors and the search engine bot knows where to find the correct content on your page. Here are some possible reasons why a given URL produces a 404 Error:

  • A link on social media or a partner website has a spelling mistake in the URL.
  • You corrected a spelling mistake in your own permalinks after they’ve been around for a while or simply wanted to shorten a link.
  • You changed a main category a post belongs to.

To keep track of the 404 errors and redirect them to the right content, you can simply use a plugin called “Redirection“.

Redirection

If you installed the plugin it will ask you if it should keep track of 404 errors (don’t track the IP if you don’t have a good reason for it, for most cases this is unnecessary). In the settings you’ll find a tab called “404” where every 404 error will be tracked. In the same tab you can easily redirect the queried URL to your preferred page.

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