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What is a 404 Error and How to Fix It?

Have you ever clicked on a link only to be greeted by a "404 Page Not Found" error? This common error message indicates that the server cannot find the requested page. While encountering a 404 error can be frustrating for users, understanding its causes and how to fix it can help you maintain a seamless browsing experience on your website. Let's delve into what a 404 error is and how you can resolve it.

Understanding and Resolving the 404 Error: A Comprehensive Guide

What is a 404 Error?

A 404 error, also known as a "404 Page Not Found" error, occurs when a user tries to access a web page that does not exist on the server. This can happen for various reasons, such as a mistyped URL, a broken link, or a page that has been moved or deleted without a proper redirect in place.

Common Causes of 404 Errors:

  1. Mistyped URLs: Users may accidentally enter a wrong URL or misspell a word in the URL, leading to a 404 error.
  2. Broken Links: Links on your website pointing to non-existent pages can result in 404 errors.
  3. Deleted Pages: If you delete a page on your website without setting up a redirect, users trying to access that page will encounter a 404 error.
  4. Moved Pages: If you move a page to a new URL without setting up a redirect, users trying to access the old URL will encounter a 404 error.

How to Fix a 404 Error:

  1. Check the URL: Double-check the URL for any typos or errors. Ensure that the URL is correct and points to a valid page on your website.
  2. Fix Broken Links: Use a link checker tool to identify and fix broken links on your website. Update or remove any links pointing to non-existent pages.
  3. Redirect Deleted or Moved Pages: If you've deleted or moved a page, set up a 301 redirect from the old URL to the new URL. This tells search engines and users that the page has permanently moved.
  4. Customize Your 404 Page: Create a custom 404 error page that provides helpful information and navigation options for users who land on a non-existent page. This can help retain visitors and guide them to other parts of your website.


Encountering a 404 error can be frustrating for users, but it's a common issue that can be easily resolved. By understanding the causes of 404 errors and following the steps outlined above, you can ensure a smoother browsing experience for your website visitors and maintain the integrity of your website's content.

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