404 Error Page Ideas

404-error-pages1 Web design is a hybrid formation of information, interaction and theatrics. It is theatrical in the sense that a good website will tell a story with a clear defined beginning, process of character development, plot maturation and finally the ending or conversion.

404 error page design ideas

Included in the story of every website is the antagonist, in this case the 404 error page. 404 pages are what occurs when a page cannot be displayed. This may be due to a broken link, improper coding, pages that have moved, etc. What the visitor often receives on most 404 error pages is a message like this:

Error 404 | Nothing found!

Sorry, but you are looking for something that is not here.

The user is forced to click the back button or other navigation to try and get out of this area. Most visitors will simply leave a website after landing on a 404 error page. A better end to the story, and one way to defeat this abstract villain, is to offer the user a search bar and additional menu navigation to help guide them on the way to what they are looking for. I wrote about adding a search bar to WordPress in a different post which will come in handy here.

404 error pages can be managed rather easily in WordPress. When logged in as an admin, simply go to Appearance > Editor and click on (usually) the top option 404 Template (404.php). Add in some text to help guide the user and the search bar, perhaps some additional navigation. Check out the 404 in action by simply typing in your domain with /anythingbutanactivelink to see how the site handles pages that do not exist.

~ BONUS ~

Here are 5 images that could work on 404 error pages:

  1. 404 Error 1
  2. 404 error pages ideas 2
  3. 404 error pages ideas 3
  4. 404 error pages ideas 4
  5. 404 error pages ideas 5
Jophiel Silvestrone

Written by: Jophiel Silvestrone

Jophiel Silvestrone has written 180 posts in the Tech Blog.

Jophiel grew up on a ranch in Paradise Valley, Montana near Chico Hot Springs. Working on the ranch instilled work ethic and self motivation. Filled with this drive, Jophiel started mowing the local school's yards twice a month throughout the summers, at the age of 12. He moved to Billings in 2004, where he has been deeply involved in the local business community ever since. A serial entrepreneur, Jophiel has ran multiple businesses in our local community. The first business, a janitorial and carpet cleaning company, founded in 2005, has employed over 50 locals. Moving on to the media industry, Jophiel and several partners founded Green Directory Montana in the spring of 2007. Green Directory's sustainability ranking software awarded points based on sustainable or "green" actions. These points counted towards a business's total "Green Score," which in turn ranked them against other businesses in their category and throughout the entire site. It also featured a limited edition print version distributed annually. A business acquisition allowed Jophiel to focus on new projects, and a few close business colleagues and Jophiel started Rocky Mountain Mr. & Ms. Magazine, a lifestyle publication for men and women in the Magic City. After a year and a half at the helm of RM3 Magazine, the business was purchased. He now runs a web development company SkyPoint Studios and fathers his son Jaoquin, who plays football, basketball, soccer, and is learning snowboarding from his dad. Recently, has expanded to locations in Havasu, Arizona & Vegas. SkyPoint Studios is a market leader in both Billings & Havasu and Jophiel is working on building that same level of market dominance in Vegas. Specialties: Extensive experience in online and offline business. Especially savvy at WordPress, and operate several sites, one example is the blog: skypointwebdesignbillingsmontana.com/tech-blog. Check out skypointwebdesignbillingsmontana.com for the latest projects from SkyPoint Studios.

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