400 errors a problem for SEO ?

5 replies
  • SEO
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Are 400 errors a user or website problem, do they effect my SERP rating and if so is there anything I can do about them?

I'm trying to clean up my main site to remove as many barriers to natural SERP as possible and have been monitoring Google Webmaster Tools closely - especially crawl errors.

One error that i've seen recently is the HTML error witrh code 400 which google define as:

400 (Bad request) The server didn't understand the syntax of the request.

I've been fixing other crawl errors, 'not followed' and 'not found' errors with .htaccess and robot.txt edits but I dont know much about 400 errors.

From what i've read its where the user types in the wrong address or uses an unsupported browser? Is that right?
#400 #errors #html #problem #seo
  • Profile picture of the author dburk
    Hi Jangamania,

    A HTTP response status code of 400 is most likely a malformed URL. Here is a list of HTTP Status codes for all of the 4xx series:
    • Bad request 400 - The request had bad syntax or was inherently impossible to be satisfied.
    • Unauthorized 401 - The parameter to this message gives a specification of authorization schemes which are acceptable. The client should retry the request with a suitable Authorization header.
    • PaymentRequired 402 - The parameter to this message gives a specification of charging schemes acceptable. The client may retry the request with a suitable ChargeTo header.
    • Forbidden 403 - The request is for something forbidden. Authorization will not help.
    • Not found 404 - The server has not found anything matching the URI given
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  • Profile picture of the author jhonsean
    The Above mentioned errors are problem for SEO because its within the On Page Optimization process that reflects the page rank of the specified site.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jordan Kovats
    Or are you saying you have 400 different errors you have to fix? I would want to clean that up too if that is the case.
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  • Profile picture of the author SmithDev
    yups.. it's seriously! Google detect as soft 404,..
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    • Profile picture of the author paulgl
      400 errors have nothing to do with serps or seo.

      The only time an error is a problem, is if you swear your site is up
      but can't be found. By you or anyone.

      Every website gets those errors because the way the internet works
      is not perfect. Your internet connection, your ISP, the sites IP, the
      sites host, etc., etc. etc. Believe it or not, even your computer!

      Unfortunately, people check their stats and freak out over errors.

      I'm assuming that is what you have done.

      Just relax. Has nothing to do with much of anything, most of the time.

      If they become a problem, and none of your pages are found, or other
      stuff, that YOU know should be there, contact your host. But it really has
      to be an almost constant problem. The probability on that is low.

      If you get 5,000 requests, I'd say look for 100 or so to be bad.
      That's just my round about figure, nothing scientific.

      $#!^ happens.

      Having custom error pages, 401 for example, gives a soft landing, which is good for
      your visitors, but nothing SEO about it. Except to build trust with
      visitors.

      Paul
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      If you were disappointed in your results today, lower your standards tomorrow.

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