Google Webmasters is reporting http://www.costumingdiary.com/404.shtml as a soft 404 page.
How do I get the 404.shtml page, and any error page, to return a proper 404 code?
Solved! Go to Solution.
You'll need to configure Error Pages in your web server (Apache) so it sends a 404 when it cannot find a page. In cPanel you will find this setting under Manage Hosting > Advanced > Error Pages. Copy and paste the html from your current 404/error.shtml pages into the Error Page of this section and it will return it with a 404 when it cannot find a page.
I'm assuming you've created the current pages (error.shtml and 404.shtml) just as you would any other page. The confusion occurs when Apache receives a request for those pages, it searches your web folder and finds the page successfully, hence the 200 response code when it serves the page to the visitor.