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Even though our website is indexed by google, sitelinks are not getting generated. It's been almost 2 years now and still not sitelinks. Google webmaster tools has a lot of 404 errors. Are these 404 errors making it difficult for google to generate sitelinks ?

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    Sitelinks only happen when Google determines a site is worthy of having them. Most sites are not. – John Conde May 25 '16 at 12:18
  • they were generated before. Our site underwent a major revamp and all sitelinks are gone after that. It's been 18 months now without any sitelinks – Eventznu May 25 '16 at 12:31
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Yes, those 404 are making it difficult for Google to crawl you.

As Google starts crawling a site, the more trusted, valued, updated, etc. the site gets, the more Google crawls it again, maybe crawling it more often and maybe crawling it deeper into the site structure.

Those 404 are treated as really bad links to Google that decrease that value of your site. All those 404 include old/deprecated links from your sitemaps, broken links inside your pages or even old/broken/malformed links on other sites, pointing to yours, that Google thinks that are/were valuable sometime.

In my opinion, 18 months is way too much for those 404 to be there. Your site has been losing value all this time and it's probably been crawled maybe once or twice a month or a week, and only a little amount of pages.

The first step should be to FIX THEM as soon as possible.

  • If the content is still in your site, 301 them to your actual site content URL.
  • If they're no longer available, remove them from your sitemaps, ask the other sites to remove then from their sites, and remove them from your site!

While your 404s are been removed/crawled again, update your sitemaps and read some blogs around about it

https://moz.com/blog/how-to-fix-crawl-errors-in-google-webmaster-tools

https://moz.com/blog/how-to-avoid-an-seo-disaster-when-changing-your-website

PS: This is usually a slow process, so.. patience

  • Thanks for this however, we are clueless where those 404 are coming from ? They are not there in the wordpress admin also not there in the sitemap.xml. Are they coming from the database ? We are confused ? Please asssist !! The 404 links are again linked from pages which are no more on our site i.e the source is also 404. Can you please suggest how to fix this problem ? It's been pending since long now. – Eventznu May 27 '16 at 6:25
  • Google cannot access to your database, so their not coming from there. Try to 301 those pages to new urls in your site, or remove them with the URL removal tool from Google Webmaster Tools – I.G. Pascual May 27 '16 at 8:06
  • Thanks for the inputs, we marked them as problem fixed from google web master tools but somehow they resurface after some time. Is URL removal tool that you talking about something different from the mark as problem resolved thing ? – Eventznu May 30 '16 at 1:48
  • @Eventznu you have to fix them before marking them as fixed (you can check the page/sitemaps source and more info by clicking the URL link), or go to the url removal tool, which is placed somewhere like this. I think right now you cannot directly remove them, just temporary block them – I.G. Pascual May 30 '16 at 8:55

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