How to Fix WordPress Posts Returning 404 Error

More than 35.6% of the websites found on the internet are made up using WordPress. Nearly 40%! Then how popular should this content managing system be? It should be totally flawless. If that’s what you are thinking then we are sorry to inform you that you have miscalculated it. Though it’s the most commonly used CMS it still occasionally shows up with some errors. The 404 error posted by WordPress is one such flaw.

But we are here to help you with some simple ways to solve the 404 errors by WordPress.

Mostly the root cause of this problem is spotted in your htaccess file. To solve this problem all you have to do is either restore or reconfigure the htaccess file.

Roll your sleeves up! We are going to learn how to fix 404 errors posted by WordPress.

What does the whole 404 error mean in WordPress?

They are the common error that could happen to any website so WordPress isn’t the only one with this fault. In simple words when the search engine cannot find a page it pops out a 404 error. The most common reason why the search engine cannot find the website or web page is because they simply do not exist.

It could totally be a pinprick if the browser pops a 404 error when you search up for something important. But sometimes a 404 error pops up even when you know for a fact that the particular website or webpage exists.

In such circumstances, some of the most common reasons behind this pop-up are the incorrect settings in the Domain name server(DNS), your server’s configuration can be facing some problems, the WordPress plugins and the themes you have used for the site might have some compatibility issues or some issue with the Caching.

So if the reason for your 404 error pop-up is not an incorrect URL then you should deal with this issue as soon as possible.

How to fix WordPress 404 error

The very first thing that you’ll need is Cyberduck or  FileZilla , FTPs( file transfer protocol), these help with connecting to your server. Here is a tutorial on how you can use FileZilla on your WordPress site. Text editors like Visual Studio Code, TextEdit, Notepad or Atom can be used to edit that WordPress file of yours.

Before following the below mentioned steps we would advise you to have a backup of your WordPress site.

1Your WordPress permalinks have to be reconfigured
2Restoring the default .htaccess file of your WordPress website
3The plugins and themes used in your WordPress website have to be disabled

Your WordPress permalinks have to be reconfigured:

This simple activity could be done in under 30 seconds. There are a lot of permalink structures that WordPress offers. Permalinks in general are nothing complicated but your website URL. Sometimes WordPress can mess up with the generation of permalink which results in the 404 error. To fix 404 in WordPress all you have to do is reset the permalink structure temporarily. This method is only applicable when you’re using a custom permalink structure and not the default plain.

Resetting the permalink once could mostly solve your 404 issues but if it’s still not solved then you’ll definitely need to dive deep to find the cause.

Restoring the default .htaccess file of your WordPress website:

The file that contains the manual on how WordPress must communicate with your server is the .htaccess file. This manual also contains the guidelines on how your site’s Url is generated. If the first method did not solve your 404 error then this might.

Mostly the plugins that you use for your site or even the hosting provider might do some change to your actual .htaccess file. So a faulty URL ends up with a 4040 error. So to wipe out these changes the .htaccess file is restored.

The plugins and themes used in your WordPress website have to be disabled

One not so common reason for the 404 error page is nothing but compatibility issues. The compatibility between your WordPress themes, WordPress plugins and WordPress itself is very important. If both our previously mentioned solutions have failed to help you then this could be your answer, disable all the themes and plugins and see if there is any possible compatibility issue. And remember to disable them and make sure you don’t uninstall them. There is a higher chance of your site’s functionality being affected because of this actively. But it’s also equally important to rule out all the possible problems causing plugins or themes. But to avoid this we suggest you have a staging website instead of a live site.


You should fix WordPress 404 errors right away because this will increase your bounce rate. Higher bounce rates affect your SEO score. This error can happen in any CMS. So don’t abandon WordPress, it’s an amazing website creation platform. It has numerous themes to offer. One such theme provider is JThemes Studio with 100+ themes and 20,000 happy customers. GIT for further information.