The dreaded “404 Page Not Found” is not fun to have show up for your visitors when they are on your website. This post shares some ideas on how to take advantage of this error and make the 404 error page work for you and not against you (as often happens). ** The following article is republished with permission by Gypsy ~ Kimberly LoSavio © 2012, Blogging w/ Gypsy @ Gypsy’s Treasures ~ Blogging & WP Designing Mom. All rights reserved. If you are interested in reposting this article to your blog/eZine/site, please visit my FAQ page. **
We all have been there. We click on a link or make a typo in the web address we type and get the dreaded “404 Page Not Found” — OOOPs. It is worse when this happens on our own web/blogsites. Double OOOPPS o.O
Here’s a short video about this very thing — Renny Gleeson “shows us, while he runs through a slideshow of creative and funny 404 pages, every error is really a chance to build a better relationship. (quoted from Ted.com)”
If the video does not show up, please visit the following link: http://www.ted.com/talks/view/lang///id/1444
So how can you get that page to work for you and not against you? Well let me give you some ideas
** Most of the following tips and ideas are under the assumption that you have the basic knowledge of html and you are your own webmaster. **
For WordPress users, the WP Codex has a great page to help with the basics of customizing your 404 page. For those who have a static site, it is just a matter of creating one. For those of us using WP, it’s just a matter of editing the premade page in the WP dashboard’s editor. ( ** again, assuming you are already familiar. If not, it’s time to learn ** )
Humor is awesome for these pages And, as Renny said, it’s also a great way to show your readers just one more reason why they love you. So, add some flair, have some fun, and use this page to your advantage.
Offer a freebie not available anywhere else on your site — a report, ebook, tip list, coupon code, tutorial, the ideas are endless. Keep the freebie relevant to your brand or niche. If you take advantage the right way, two things will happen here: your reader will get a free gift and you can add one more person to your list I call this a win-win!
Check out Mashable’s Happy 404 Day! Here Are the Web’s Funniest Error Messages [PICS] for more ideas! There are some hilarious and awesome ideas here!!!
What have you done with your 404 Error page? We would love to read your comments.