Imagine one of your site visitors looking up something from your website and finds nothing but an annoying error page that says “content not found”. Uh oh, it’s a deleted page! This is frustrating to come across and instances like this are not good for your visitors and neither for your website’s reputation. In this article, we’ll show you how to delete website pages the right way so these error pages will stop appearing.

Updating your website may include deleting old or outdated pages that you think are no longer needed or relevant for your website, however, before you send off any of your web pages into thin air, you have to consider redirecting its old URL first so you won’t leave your visitors hanging with an empty deleted page.

“Content Not Found”…what?!

An Error 404 or Error 410 will appear once a page is deleted. The server stopped processing the requested page because there was an error. Here are two error pages that you need to know:

Error 404

As mentioned before, this is the error page that pops up and says “content not found” when you try to get access to a site or a page, indicating that it’s unavailable. Usually, it pops up when the URL is not typed correctly or it doesn’t really exist. It’s like a ‘dead-end street’ that is closed at one end and doesn’t lead you anywhere.

Error 410

Similarly to Error 404, this one is more specific and straight-up indicated that the content or page is deleted. This means that Google knows that the page is ‘gone’ for sure and it’s no longer accessible on the server. 

How To Avoid These Error Pages:

Now that you’re aware of these error pages, let’s do something about it. When avoiding these error pages popping up, consider creating a redirect page (also known as Website Redirects). Website Redirects automatically send your site visitors and search engines from one URL to another. When someone tries to access the original link, they will be automatically transferred to a new page or website. There are several types of redirects but these two are best suited during deleting content or a page:

301 Redirect

It’s a page that permanently redirects your visitors to once the original one is removed or cannot be found. To avoid error pages, you use a 301 redirect. This way, you could redirect your visitors to a link from your website that gives the same information they might be looking for. This also comes in handy if you have an outdated content and you want your visitors to go straight to a newly updated one.

302 Redirect

While a 301 Redirect redirects pages permanently, a 302 Redirect does the same thing temporarily. This type of redirect is best used for when you want to send your site visitors to a new page for a brief period of time and you intend to bring the original page or URL back to your website. For example, let’s say that one page from your site is under construction, then a 302 redirect is a great option to go for.

There’s nothing more disappointing when an empty deleted page pops up when it had a really promising header or title. Error pages decrease your website’s quality and value and it negatively affects your SEO ranking as well. As to why when deleting pages from your site, do it properly by using Website Redirects.

Deleting web pages from your site is one of many tasks you need in order to have a beautiful and fully-functioning website. These tasks are very time-consuming and your time would be better spent on growing your business. Here at EZtransition, we understand small businesses. Our team of experts will handle these mundane but important web tasks while you focus on growth. We’ll take care of your website’s design, SEO, social media, blogging, and more. Contact us today! 

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