I have a website and Google webmaster account that shows 404 errors that do not belong belong to my website. For example, I have never had any URL like:


I've never had a page with an address like that since I started my website. I have 40-50 404 errors like that every day.

  • Or i am using Wordpress but i have 404 error like : 'using-joomla/extensions/templates/beez5/home-page-beez5/79-joomla/8-beginners' Mar 9 '15 at 9:52
  • Have these URLs ever been valid... in a previous life perhaps?
    – MrWhite
    Mar 9 '15 at 10:16
  • no URLs are not valid and i did not have these URLs in my website Mar 9 '15 at 11:22

There are more than likely, existing links on the web that point to these URL's that are 404'ing which used to exist on a former version of the website hosted on your domain.

You can check if any links point to those URL's by running them through a backlink checker like ahrefs or Majestic. You can also check if any of those URL's exist in Google's index by searching for site: http://domain.tld/url. You can also check in Google Analytics what traffic is hitting these URL's (if any).

It's probably just a case of getting Google to recrawl your website and ensuring what they have in their index is correct. There isn't a great deal you can do to stop the 404's though. If I enter http://domain.tld/anypagehere.html in my browser and that page doesn't exist on your website, you'll get a 404 response in Google WMT.

  • "...you'll get a 404 response in Google WMT" - If you simply type a non-existent URL in the browser, this shouldn't trigger a 404 in GWT - only if Googlebot tries to follow that URL will you see it reported in GWT.
    – MrWhite
    Mar 9 '15 at 11:34
  • Sorry yes, the website would (should) serve a 404 error but of course won't appear in Google WMT unless Google attempt to crawl it. Thanks @w3d.
    – zigojacko
    Mar 9 '15 at 11:47
  • my problem is about links that i didn't use in my website, for example domain.net/address/address/address it was not valid but i have error in Google Webmasters Mar 9 '15 at 14:41

We get this question in various forms all the time. Do not worry about a 404 error that is completely correct- meaning that the resource does not exist and the error is correct in that respect. Do not Mark as Fixed any 404 that is correct. It just resets the countdown clock- a certain number of retries before ignoring. This is primarily informational in GWT, but still people freak out because Google says there is an error when in reality, your scenario is perfectly correct. Do not worry about it.

Zigojacko is perfectly correct. Most of the time, these are links on sites that are discovered and incorrect. Sometimes you can find them and have them removed. But there is another side to the equation that is not covered here.

There is a whole plethora of spam sites that only last a few days or weeks as spam sites, but then can become legitimate. These sites can sometimes be found as referrer spam as well. Generally, the idea is to spam smaller more regional search engines such as in Russia and China- primarily Russia and parts of Europe where language and niche search sites exist. You will not find many of these in Google, Ahrefs, and other back link checkers and sites because of their hit and run nature. Often, databases are used to make these links so they can appear on one site for a day, then another site for a day, then go away only to return again later. These databases are passed around. Some links are created using poor spiders that generate errors. I also suspect that some links are completely made up for keyword effect.

There is nothing you can do about these spammers. The best advice is to simply correct any honestly made links that are wrong where you can and simply not worry about the rest. Generally, I do not even worry about these. Unless you are getting links in the thousands, I would suggest not worrying about them too much. If you are getting thousands of links, then it may be a deliberate negative SEO campaign. So keep your eyes open.

You can research as much as you can and I would suggest figuring out what you can.

Google does not penalize a site with 404 errors generally. Google recognizes the difference between 404 errors you created or were created else where. It is quite common for any site to see a number of broken inbound links and Google understands this very well. Just make sure your site is correct. You can use http://www.screamingfrog.co.uk/seo-spider/ to check your own site. ScreamingFrog allows for 500 pages in the free version and is rather affordable if you want to check more. It seems to be the most popular tool, but there may be others that are completely free to use so I would suggest looking around for a good tool for your purposes.

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