TIP: search site:your-domain-name in Google to see all the pages currently indexed.
Google Search Results
Did you know you can quickly and easily check what pages Google has indexed in it’s search results?
Simply by searching “site:your-domain-name” to see the results. Now you can easily decide which pages you want Google to keep and which pages you want to get rid off. Nothing like a good page cleanup to keep your SEO tight.
That’s not all
Now we can find more specific Google Search Results by adding the word ‘test’ to the end, and see all the pages Google has indexed for test. “site:your-domain-name test” and see the results.
Over time, a lot of people create pages to test new layout designs with next to no content or outdated content. This will show you if any of those old test pages have been indexed, so you can cleanup those SEO bugs, and improve your website in the eyes of search engines.
Found some pages to delete, what’s next?
If you happen to find URLs that are no longer needed, you will need to create a 410 error and delete the page. A 410 error messages tells search engines like Google that those pages no longer exist and to remove them from their search results.
In WordPress download the happily named plugin call 410 for WordPress. This plugin will record broken links and allow you manually add URLs that no longer exist so Google knows to remove them from the search results.
What’s wrong with a 404 not found page?
Well, nothing. Assuming the missing page is only missing temporary. Perhaps a recent page update for example. However, Google will continue to have that 404 page indexed and any visitors that experience the the 404 may leave your site all together without having a look around.
A 410 error message means the page is no longer available, permanently.