Everything About Effective Custom 404 Error Pages : Best Practices & Examples
September 11, 2013 § Leave a comment
For a visitor, landing on an error page is really annoying. Let’s understand what the heck is an error page. In the layman’s terms, it is a page with “page not found” message on which a visitor is redirected automatically whenever s/he click on a link that might be broken, moved, or doesn’t exist. One really awesome thing about 404 error pages is that they play a great role in driving users back to the main website’s home page.
404 error pages come really handy from Search Engine Optimization (SEO) point of view. It makes your website highly optimized in the eyes of visitors as well as popular search engines. Having a good “Page not found” web page with great contents and links plays a great role in maintaining good communication and possibly persuade users to come back to the home page. In this way, 404 error pages bring a second chance for you to re-engage with your potential visitors.
Instead of a nasty dead-end error message, designers are experimenting with different design elements, namely high-detailed and captivated illustrations, photo backgrounds, animations, vibrant colors, mini games, jokes, texts, easy navigations, sliders and more to come up with a visually appealing and informative 404 error page. To make the page more useful, the designers are also providing things like menu, home link, search box, useful resources etc., which further help in taking care of various issues.
Besides better user experience, many designers are also focusing to optimize “Page not found” error pages keeping in mind both a tracking and usability perspective. Below are some considerable guidelines for optimizing 404 Pages :
1) Include company’s name and logo on your 404 error page
2) Add a valid email link so that users can make direct contact with site administrator or report problems.
3) It is always a good idea to link back an error page to the home page and/or other pages.
4) Include links and icons of social media websites like Facebook, Twitter, GooglePlus and more.
5) Add a search box. (Refer fig A)
6) You can also create an alert on Google Analytics and monitors 404 page traffic report.
In the modern era of web development company, many professionals have wisely taken an advantage of “custom 404 error page” to simply drive the annoyed visitors back to the home page. Keeping in consideration the many benefits of 404 error pages, people are giving more and more emphasis on the same page. Designers are implementing different designing tricks and fun tendencies to minimize the annoying experience of error pages and simultaneously making page errors tolerable.
Anne keller, is a proficient writer who believes that words are a man’s strongest weapon. He has a great proficiency as a writer in diverse areas and specializes in web development, designing and much more.