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Google Search Console: Submitted URL not found (404)

What issue is this page dealing with?
404 errors often occur when your server denies access to a page, preventing it from being indexed. In this page we will show you how this can be easily fixed using WordPress with a Yoast plug-in to update your XML sitemap.

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Send me an email with your URL and I’ll spin up a top level SEO audit, free of charge. If you want a slightly more advanced one; just add me to your Google Search Console (email is the same). 

What I cover here

What is a 404 error and why does it occur?

A 404 error code means that the page cannot be found, most of the time, this is because it simply does not exist. It might have been moved without the correct redirect codes being implemeneted or permanently deleted. However, your XML sitemap failed to update and your page was submitted for indexing anyways; thus, the submitted URL was not found.

How to fix submitted URL not found in WordPress?

The solution to this issue depends on whether the URL has been moved or deleted. 

If the URL has been moved, you will need to set up a 301 redirect. The easiest way to do this is by downloading a redirection plugin on your CMS of choice. If you’re a WordPress user, I’d recommend using Simple 301 redirects. 

If, however, the URL has been deleted, you will need to remove it from your XML sitemap. The easiest way to do this is by using the Yoast SEO plugin. Simply follow these instructions:

  1. Head to your WordPress dashboard
  2. On the left hand-side menu, look for the Yoast SEO 
  3. In the sub-menu, select General 
  4. Click on the ‘features’ tab 
  5. Scroll down until you see ‘XML Sitemaps’
  6. Click on the question mark icon and then click ‘see the XML sitemap’
  7. From here, it’s as simple as removing the URLs
  8. Save your changes and Yoast SEO will automatically send your sitemap to Google

If you’ve completed these steps, waited and few days and your sitemap still hasn’t been submitted, you may have to submit it directly to Google yourself via your search console. You can also try updating your plugin or resetting it to ensure that it’s automatically submitted next time.

Need helping with 404 errors?

If you’re having issues with 404 status codes, consider having a fully comprehensive audit of your site performed to identify where all the issues are stemming from. If you’d like a free quote, fill out the contact form on the technical audit service page or contact me to have a chat.

Need CMS specific SEO support?  I’ve got extensive experience working with the below CMS – view each service page to learn more. I’ve also include some additional links which may be useful for that particular CMS.

Would you like a free SEO audit? 

Enter your details in the form here and I’ll run a top level audit of your website, it shouldn’t take long and will give you some basic information on your site’s health. 

In addition to getting a free audit, if you are stuck on a particular problem, do feel free to reach out to me – I’m always happy to help fellow SEO experts answer any questions.