If you have moved your website links recently or deleted them, then you may see crawl error in your Google Webmaster Tools or Google Search Console(new name of the tool).
You will see two type of errors on the Crawl Errors page.
Site errors: In a normal operating site you generally won’t have these errors. Also as per google if they see large number of Site errors for your website they will try to notify you in the form of a message no matter how big or small your site is. These type of errors generally comes when your site is down for long time or is not reachable to google bots because of issues like DNS errors or excessive page load time.
URL errors: These are the most common errors you will find for a website. It can be because of multiple reasons like you moved or renamed the pages, or you have permanently deleted a post.
These errors may impact your search engine rankings as google don’t want the users to go to pages that doesn’t exists.
So let’s see how you can fix these URL errors.
Once you login to the Google Webmaster Tools and select the verified property you should see the URL errors marked for your site.
It has two tabs Desktop and Smartphone that shows the errors in respective version of your website.
Select the error and you will see the website link which is broken. It can be your old post which you have moved or deleted.
If you are a developer you can redirect the pages of the broken links to working pages.
But if you don’t want to mess with the code you can install a free plugin called Redirection . Below we will see how you can install and use this plugin.
- For installing the plugin go to Dashboard> Plugins> Add New
- Search the plugin “Redirection” and click Install > Activate.
- After you have installed the plugin go to Dashboard> Tools> Redirection.
- Once on the Redirection settings pages select “Redirects” from the top.
- In the “Source URL” copy/paste the URL for which you are getting error.(Refer image below)
- In the “Target URL” copy/paste the working URL.
- Click Add Redirect.
You can also redirect all your broken URLs to your Homepage. But if the post is available on different link, then it’s recommended that you redirect the broken link to new working link of that post. This will enhance the user experience
Last step is that you go back to the Google Webmaster Tools page. Select the URL you just corrected and click on “Mark as Fixed” .
Hope this post helps you. Do let me know your opinion in comments section.