SEO Programmers: Heed the Words of Savvy Redirects

Stephan, again, illustrates tech terms vs. common sense. 

I love the “Oh noooes” most!

clipped from
Return a 404 When You’re Supposed To, Or Get Dinged by Google

A friend’s website’s Google rankings have tanked after their redesign. And I think I know why. Have a look at the status codes their web server returns when you request a garbage URL (a page that couldn’t possibly exist)…


#lwp-request -S
GET –> 301 Moved Permanently
GET –> 200 OK


A 301 followed by a 200. Oh noooes!


That REALLY should be a 404 status code instead.


Make sure that garbage URLs like return a 404 status code. Googlebot is known to request garbage URLs and to see if you respond with a 404 like you’re supposed to. If you don’t, your quality score goes down the tubes.

Posted by Stephan Spencer on 08/22/2008 | Permalink

Comments (0)| Comments RSS | Filed under: Search Engines � � � � � �

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