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The most common cause for a 404 error is the page has been taken down or moved to a new URL – it's simply a dead link. But other circumstances could lead to 404 errors, as well. The URL of the link you're trying to view may be wrong or the server the site's ran on is down, or there are connection problems.
If you see this error on your site, you've probably moved or deleted something and didn't update the internal linking structure of your site. To fix the 404 errors, the best thing to do is add redirects to these pages so the visitor or search engine will be guided through to the correct or related page.
In many cases, it's another site linking to your site and has the wrong URL linking to you. For example, if you have a page that's yoursite.com/weeklydeal and try to link to you using yoursite.com/weeklydeals, it will not work. You can try to contact them to get it fixed, but it's probably just easier to make a redirect for yoursite.com/weeklydeals to yoursite.com/weeklydeal.
You can find any 404 errors on your site by looking in Google Webmaster Tools. Go to Diagnostics, then to Crawl Errors. If you click on the 'not found,' you'll see a complete list of all the 404s on your site. You can click on one and show you all the places linking to that page.
You can redirect 404 pages with the .htaccess file found in your site's root folder in cPanel's File Manager. Enable view hidden files to find it. You can redirect specific pages or all the pages that have a 404 error. Be extremely careful when editing this file, though, as one typo can mess up your site.
To redirect a single page to another page, add this line to your .htaccess file:
Redirect 301 /oldpage.html http://www.example.com/newpage.html
If you have 404 pages, you visitors to all of those pages to your front page. If this is the case, add this line to your .htaccess file:
ErrorDocument 404 http://YOURURL
Note: If you downloaded the .htaccess file to edit it, or you're creating one for the first time, make sure you upload it in ASCII mode. Name the file htaccess.txt and change its name to just .htaccess once it's uploaded to your server.
If you're using WordPress, several free plugins help you manage your 404 pages and create redirects. Here are just a few of them:
Written by Hostwinds Team / December 13, 2016