Way back in 2008, I wrote an article with tips on creating memorable maintenance/error pages and examples of some awesome pages from other websites. The importance of the maintenance/error page is just as important today.
Even more important than a proper maintenance page is a proper 404 error page for visitors that land on pages of your site that have moved, don’t exist or are typoed.
Informative 404 Error Pages
What ia a “proper” 404 Error Page you may be wondering? Well, quite simply it is an error page that describes what type of error the user is experiencing (404 = Page Not Found), gives the user an option to alternate pages (usually popular content or recent posts) or a search of the site.
Here are a few awesome examples of creativity and helping users reach their destinations:
So, what should be kept in mind for making an awesome, memorable and helpful 404 error page?
- Explanation of where the user is, and how they got there.
- Suggestions of where to go next, or other content that may be relevant (recent posts or related articles).
- Illustrations, images or other visual goodies that engage user.
- Search options! I think this may one of the most important things you can include on your 404 Error Page.
- Humor – Acknowledge something happened that shouldn’t have and make light of it!
Do you have a favorite 404 Error Page you have come across? Share it in the comments below!