Google about 404, soft 404 and 301 HTTP status codes

In two Twitter posts, Google’s John Mueller explained how Google treats 301 HTTP status codes that are changes to 404 HTTP status codes and soft 404 pages.

Google and HTTP status codes

1. If you change a 301 code to 404, it’s just a 404

2. A soft 404 is just a 404

If URLs on your web pages use a 301 redirect to redirect to the home page, Google will treat this as a soft 404, which is essentially a 404:

How to check the HTTP status codes of your web pages

Among many other things, the website audit tool in SEOprofiler checks the HTTP status codes that your web pages send. If there are any problems, the website audit tool will notify you. The website audit tool also checks your web pages for other things that can have a negative impact on your search engines rankings:

Check your web pages now

Johannes Selbach

Johannes Selbach is the CEO of SEOprofiler. He blogs about search engine optimization and website marketing topics at "http://blog.seoprofiler.com".