404 errors are those annoying error messages you get when you click on a link that goes nowhere. They’re frustrating and they can reduce your websites ranking in search engines such as Google and Bing.

Many websites invest time and money producing funny error messages (see below for some good examples), and although this can produce a smile, it isn’t what we’re aiming for in this post.

You can take advantage of your competitors 404 errors by doing a link check through a program like SEOmoz . The trick is to find out who is linking to a non-existing page on their website.

Once this is determined, you can contact the website, let them know about the error and offer them a quality link to your website instead.

This has two advantages:

You’ll reduce their authority and increase yours at the same time.

You’ll establish yourself, and your website, as an authority with the original linking website with the hope that they’ll link to you again and more often.

This is a very easy, and legitimate, way to stay ahead of the competition. Here are some of my favorites:

designgala.com

j-morales.info

www.smashingmagazine.com

funny-404-page

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