Intro to 404 Pages and Strategies for better 404 Pages
404 error is an error when a user or visitor try to browse a none-existent page or content in website. Cases might be:
- Page might be broken or doesn’t exist any more
- The particular website url is given another url name, and had forgotten to point via 301 redirects
In case of pages being moved to another url, it’s always a good idea to use 301 redirects to tell google that the url address of the page had been changed.
In normal cases, we have to create a 404 page in the webserver which can be a standard HTML page or if you are using WordPress as a Content Management System, 404 pages can be included as a part of template as 404.php file
Better Strategies for 404 Pages
When a user or visitor lands into 404 error page, definitely it does give a bad experience and most likely s/he going to exists the site without browsing other pages within the website.
But precautions can be taken in order to minimise the chance of visitor existing the site, by drawing out good strategies for the 404 pages.
Some of the recommended strategies might be:
- Adding links to the most popular articles or most important articles in the website
- Maintaining the uniform navigation pattern of the website and adding link back to the main home page
- Website definitely have some goal pages, so adding some goal pages might be good for conversions. Things like showing the services that’s on offer can work for good too.
These had been a short intro to the 404 pages and suggested way to draw out 404 pages for better user experience and conversion. From my personal web development experiences it seem to work and may be you want to give it a try too.
I am Robin - WordPress Developer based in Sydney. I work as Digital Developer. I do some projects now and then, and love blogging about WordPress and Web Design.