Tips to customize your 404 page

Tags: web designing , 404 error page, page not found

To see a page with ‘Error 404 Page Not Found’ message in a webpage is a little annoying.  But with a bit of care in designing you can create the page in an attractive way to make your visitors look at it with interest.

Error 404 Means…

This is a HTTP standard response code to indicate that the communication of the client with the server has been made successfully, but the server could not find the request of the client. This error happens due to various reasons

1. On removal of the page

2. If the link from a site is incorrect

3. If the visitor has typed a wrong URL

How to make a good 404 Error page

A 404 error page should be a guide who gently taking the lost visitor’s hand, directing them towards another part of your site.

1.Explain what 404 Error means. Don’t be under the false assumption that everyone is familiar with the term. An average visitor can make an assumption that something has really gone wrong when he see a 404 error in bold letters.

2.Your message should not make the visitors feel that a 404 has been shown due to their fault.  And don’t tell them to make any corrections in the spelling that they have entered. Any sentence that carries a negative tone will take away your visitors.
 
3.To have a better experience allow them to go for a different section of the site, rather than using the   back button to view the pages that they have already visited. 

4.It’s unwise to create dead ends. Also make sure that you include links to other parts of your site.

5.You can offer visitors a user-friendly option to contact the webmaster to let him know about a broken link.  Provide a form which makes the visitor’s job easy.

6.You can use search boxes.

7.Including attractive or entertaining graphic creates a much better impression on the visitors.

Creating a wiser, attractive and appealing 404 Error Page using the above mentioned tips will never create boredom to the visitors. A good appeal, a better reputation…. It’s all in how you manage to make the page boredom free.

Here are two examples

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