Creative Things to Do with Your 404 Pages
By Krista Soriano
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Ah, the 404 page. It’s annoying, frustrating, and worst of all, suuuuuper boring.
But no matter how great your site is, there’s a possibility your customers will land on one while using it.
Your best move? Making sure they don’t throw their smartphone across the room in exasperation. (Surprisingly, it’s tough for people to shop online with a shattered phone or laptop.)
Here’s how to promote an engaging and branded experience on your 404 page.
1. Make it fun. Digital artist studio Hot Dot shows off their design skills with an interactive 404 graphic that feels like a very zen video game.
2. Make it funny! Website creator Magnet livens up the moment with a humorous Venn diagram explainer of what caused the 404 error.
3. Make it useful. Your user may not know where to go next, so recommend something. Tripomatic, a trip-planning site, links to one of its popular travel guides like so: “Sorry, that page never returned from a trip to the Atacama Desert.”
4. Make it gainful. eHarmony’s 404 page includes a sign-up CTA with copy that tugs at heartstrings: “Uh oh, that page couldn’t be found. But you’re looking for love in all the right places, let’s find someone for you.”
5. Make it branded. If nothing else, just be yourself. IMDB hits users with famous movie quotes inspired by mess-ups; “Ruh-roh!” Dog goodies subscription site Barkbox employs canine humor, and Seamless gets punny: “Romaine calm and lettuce get you back to the homepage!”
photo: YinYang / Getty Images