I have a website with a lot of user content. This content can be deleted.
Right now, when someone lands on a deleted content, I send a 404 with a custom page telling "this content was been deleted, here's a list of other content you might find interesting".

All of this is fine for the user perspective.

When I open up Google Webmaster Tools, I often get a bunch of items in the error report telling me I have 404 pages. I kinda don't like having items in that list.

I'm I doing this right? Should I really send a 404 on deleted content? (are there alternative)

1 Answer 1


There's nothing wrong with that, and the alternative is treated the same way by google.

From Google's Webmaster Tools:

"If you’re getting rid of that content entirely and don’t have 
anything on your site that would fill the same user need, then 
the old URL should return a 404 or 410. Currently Google treats 
410s (Gone) the same as 404s (Not found)."

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.