Search Engines

Page Cannot Be Found – Error 404 Issue

by YC Ng on October 3, 2010

Is this sound familiar to you?

Page Cannot Be Found - Error 404

If you copy & paste www.p1.com.my/fhgjk into your browser, you will get the above Page Cannot Be Found error.

Over 70% of the sites are having this issue and your browser may be stealing your 404 traffic!

If you own any website, you got to pay attention to this, especially when you are paying for targeted traffic you certainly do not want to lose site visitors that had already landing on your site.

SOLUTIONS: Build Your 404 Error Page

Here are two popular solutions to this problem:

1. Custom 404 Error Page

You direct the user to a custom 404 page. This offers an explanation of why the page they are seeking is no longer available and provides them other navigation options. This is also known as a soft 404.

For example:

http://www.xxxx.com.my/test404

it will redirect to

http://www.xxxx.com.my/pagenotfound.asp

However, this way of dealing with missing pages will cause you problems. This will cause a missing page or even a made up page to stick in the search engine index. If you have a lot of broken links, it’s possible that your soft 404 page could actually start to rank in the search engines.

This type of soft 404 is also what Google against with. Click here to read more about Google advice.

2.User Friendly 404 Error Page – Preferred Method!

You can create a page that simply tells the visitor and search engine that the page no longer exists. Search engines read the 404 error header on the page and know immediately that the old page is gone forever. You can also customize your 404 page to give users information on how they might find the page they were looking for. The benefit of this approach is its high usability.

Take a look at this good example:

www.airasia.com/shfghgj or any characters at the back of www.airasia.com/…

404 Error Page

If your site have not implement this properly, it is time to talk to your webmaster.