Adding Personality to Your Brand
In a perfect world, customers would never see your 404 page. No one aims to land on a missing page — unless you’re me and collecting them for a blog — but errors happen, and visitors are bound to encounter a 404 error eventually. When they do, your 404 page can be the difference between a frustrating experience and an engaging one. The best 404 pages can make a potential visitor smile despite the inconvenience and keep them engaged and on your website.
My Recipe for a Good 404 Page
- It’s funny or clever and it makes me chuckle (hopefully, potential visitors also have a sense of humor)
- It’s somehow related to the company name or what the company does
- It’s well-branded, utilizing brand colors, fonts, and voice (in other words, it’s not a template)
- It gives the visitor a clear route to get where they need to go — this could be a search bar, a link back to the homepage, or any other related resources they might need to access
This concept is nothing new, and although you may not realize it, many sites you may have visited have their own unique 404 pages.
Well-known Companies with Cool 404 Pages
Spotify – When you reach Spotify’s error message, the headline sounds like a playlist title, 404s and Heartbreaks, and right next to it is a spinning record.
Dribble – Dribbble provides a color selector and whichever color you choose displays artist’s designs that utilize that color.
Marvel – Marvel has multiple versions (kind of like the multiverse) of its 404 pages, which are all themed around the MCU. Refresh the page to see multiple versions of their 404.
IMDb – On their 404 page, IMDb has subtly edited iconic quotes from famous films to fit their new purpose. Refresh the page to see multiple versions of their 404.
Cool 404 Pages We’ve Designed
Our own website – When you land on this 404 page, you see a woman holding a very cluttered, green closet door closed. It’s as if she were looking through the closet for the page you’re looking for.
Bigfoot Outrigger Pads – Their 404 page is a fun little nod to their name, including the mysterious bigfoot and a line about finding him.
COPS Inc – This 404 page features the scene of a crime — a missing page — and warns the user to return home.
Innovative Growers Equipment – This company’s 404 error features an overturned potted plant and a variety of plant puns.