Customizing Your 404 Error Pages

by Todd Bertsch - Evolve Owner/President

When launching a new website, particularly a re-design for an existing website, there are MANY, what we call “lint items”, that need to be addressed. Unfortunately, these items are often overlooked. In fact, most businesses don’t even know they exists. These are basically the nitty gritty details that are behind the scenes, that can make or break the transition of a newly launched website.

Standard 404 error page

In this post we’ll discuss the 404 error page. I’m sure many of you have run into this before while surfing the net. You have a webpage bookmarked, you go back to the bookmark several months later, to find…THE PAGE DOES NOT EXISTS! Ooops! That stinks. This is a very common issue with websites. Typically when you re-design a website the technology will change (look at your page name extensions), .php, .asp, .aspx, .html, etc. Or, the actually name of your page changes from “About-us.aspx” to “Aboutus.aspx”. Well, that’s an issue. Google (and the other search engines) have most likely already indexed your old page name. So it’s a best web usability practice to put a “Custom 404 error page” in place to explain to your visitors what has happened and what to do now. This could be a potential lead you just lost. You should also deploy “Page re-directs”, but we’ll discuss this in part-2.

404 Error Page technical details

Custom 404 error page

Creating a custom 404 error page does require some setup and integration on your web server, so you may want to contact your web designer or web hosting service to get more details. But, on the design side, you can get very creative and clever with these pages. Here’s a link to some great 404 error pages.

To tell if you have a custom error page on your site, just go to your main site directory and type in something extraneous…then hit the Enter Key. What page comes up? For example, take a look at our custom 404 error page: http://www.evolvecreativegroup.com/about_evo

When you get ready to launch your new website, make sure you have all your basis covered. There are a lot of behind the scenes details that need to be addressed. It’s always best to consult with a web professional.

Would you like to learn more about creating a custom 404 error page for your website?
Or just best web usability practices in general?
Say Hello today at 330-331-0211. Or visit our website: http://www.evolvecreativegroup.com

 

Blog Post Author Todd Bertsch

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About Evolve Creative Group

Located in Akron OH, Evolve Creative Group offers a full suite of professional web design and online marketing services including:

 

At Evolve, we take pride in delivering innovative and effective web design & online marketing solutions that ensure an evolutionary change in your business. We also believe that continuing education is an important key element to any business. For this reason, we've created Evolve University. We hope you enjoy our blog!

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