If you are focusing on implementing a successful SEO strategy for your website, it is important to understand common HTTP status codes that could arise and the correct way to deal with them. While there are over 60 HTTP status codes currently in existence, there are a select few that are more critical for SEO success. In this article, we explore the HTTP status codes that you should know and how they can affect your SEO.
Perhaps the most common error seen on the internet, 404 HTTP status codes occur when a page is no longer found on a website. In most cases, this happens because the page no longer exists and hasn’t been redirected, leading to a sub-optimal experience for your website visitors. If you have pages on your website that are sending a 404 error, set up a proper redirect to ensure your visitors find the information they are looking for.
Internal server errors generally will take down a website or it’s pages and, instead, replace them with an error page. Often this page will only let you know that an error is occurring and not give you any real insight into what is actually happening. Contact your webmaster or look for permissions errors, PHP timeouts or a coding error in .htaccess to regain functionality and get your website back up and running for visitors as soon as possible to limit potential problems.
If you have heavy traffic on your website or your server becomes overloaded, there’s a chance that it will begin serving a 504 error. If the delay is temporary, search engines will show visitor’s a cached page; however, if it occurs for longer periods you could be completely removed from search engine results. To avoid deindexing or losing your progress in search engine results, fix 504 errors as soon as possible.
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