Not Only Are 410 Response Codes More Permanent, They Are Faster

Apr 30, 2010 • 8:23 am | comments (1) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Google Search Engine Optimization

Googler, JohnMu, said in a Google Webmaster Help thread that 410 status codes "generally" work faster in getting your content out of Google than a 404 status code.

Now, we knew using 410's are more permanent but we did not know it would result in removing content from Google faster until now.

Google's JohnMu said:

A 410 will generally result in us removing a URL faster from the index.

He does add that although 410s are almost permanent, they are not 100% permanent. John added, "we will generally retry 404s a bit more frequently than 410s, but we will still retry them especially when we find new links to those URLs."

Forum discussion at Google Webmaster Help.

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04/30/2010 01:39 pm

When you think about it, it makes a whole lot of sense. It is clear from reading the HTTP specification what a HTTP 410 response code means but probably the more important in this instance is that I suspect they are comparatively rare online. As such, a web developer or CMS vendor had to go out of their way to implement a 410, where as a 404 will happen out of the box. Given the additional effort required to return a 410, it'd make sense that Google might read that signal as more deliberate than a traditional 404.

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