Remove Pages From Google ~Forever Using a 410 Status Code

Jan 27, 2010 • 8:32 am | comments (3) by | Filed Under Google Search Engine Optimization

In October, we reported that Google treats a 410 stronger than a 404 status code. I am not sure exactly when Google made the 410 status code that important, but I believe it was sometime in October.

A new thread surfaced in Google Webmaster Help where it was suggested by a Googler to use the 410, once again.

Googler, Jonathan Simon said:

Last year we started started treating 410 Gone responses as being a stronger signal for indicating when a page no longer exists. So for the situation you describe (where 301 redirects aren't practical) returning a 410 response is the way to go.

It seems to me that when Googlebot discovers a 410, it will communicate to Google to not index that page for a really long time. I believe Google will check pages they know to be 404ed every now and then. Maybe a 410 will tell Googlebot to never check back or check back extremely rarely?

Just keep in mind that the 410 is much stronger than a 404 response - it may come in handy in your future SEO projects.

Forum discussion at Google Webmaster Help.

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