Set up link redirects
1. Run a Screaming Frog report to locate 404 pages and to check the link statuses of all your pages.
Download the Excel file of the link report and use the sheet to match the 404 pages to a page on your site.
2. Decide the variant of the URLs that you are using.
Trailing slash in URLs of pages and posts matter for search engines. For example, https://example.com/page-a is different from https://example.com/page-a/.
3. Decide on the type of redirect you will be setting up.
The most popular ones are 301, 302, and 307. Choose 301 if you deleted the page, moved a website to a new domain, or want to move or change the page’s URL permanently. Redirect 404 pages using 301 redirects to pass along the link juice and authority. Choose 302 if you want to send visitors to another page but reuse the URL in the future. Choose 307 if you’re sure the move is temporary, and you will need the original page URL in the future. It’s more precise than 302.
4. Set up the link direct by using admin tools or control panels.
If you’re using Apache: Log in to your web hosting server and open your website’s .htaccess file. If you don’t have a .htaccess file, create a file in Notepad and save it as .htaccess, then upload it to your website’s root directory in your file manager in your web hosting server’s control panel. To redirect an entire website, add this code to the file: Redirect 301 / https://example.com/ To redirect one page to another, use this code: Redirect 301 /path-to-old-URL /path-to-new-URL. Replace 301 with the redirection code you chose earlier. If you’re using the cPanel control panel and don’t want to paste code: Click on Redirects from the tools available in your cPanel dashboard. Select the type of redirect and the domain only if you’re redirecting a domain, or the domain and type in the page’s URL if it’s a page you’re redirecting. Type in the URL it should redirect to and save. If you’re using WordPress and can’t access your web hosting server: Install the Redirection plugin on your website and use it to set up the redirect. Type in the old URL and the new one and set the HTTP code to the type of redirect you want to set.
5. Open an incognito window in your browser and type in the old URL to test your redirects.
If it doesn’t redirect to the new page, try setting up the redirect again.
6. Periodically check your redirects and remove the ones that are no longer necessary to improve site speed and behavior.
For example, if URL 1 was redirected to URL 2 and URL 2 is now redirected to URL 3, clean the redirect at URL 1 by redirecting it to URL 3.