404 error pages don’t evoke the best of emotions. You’ll agree landing on the dreaded 404 error page is one of the worst feelings ever. I mean, you’re desperately looking for some info that you can’t find and it sucks. You’re not alone; your readers, too, don’t fancy landing on a 404 error page when visiting your site.
Worry not though, you can turn the tables and make landing on your 404 error page a pleasurable experience. Instead of readers hitting the back button in angst, you can draw them further in using a little 404 error page magic.
To point you in the right direction as far as inspiration goes, here are a couple of brilliant 404 error pages to get your creative juices flowing. I must admit that some of these pages are quite exceptional.
From first looks, Figma’s 404 error page appears simple. And it is save for the vectors that will steal a minute or two of your precious time. I couldn’t help it; I played around with the anchor points turning the 404 whichever way I desired.
Truly, this is one those 404 error pages that will keep readers glued to your site for longer. The menu at the bottom is an added plus.
Hot Dot Production
We all love parallax when done right, and Hot Dot Production knows this all too well. Theirs is a state of the art 404 error page that features the 404 word that’s made up hundreds of bouncing tiny dots that move with your mouse.
Who knew Hillary Clinton gets stuck at the train station? If you’re surprised, did you also know she has a killer 404 error page that would give Donald Trump a run for his money? Oh no, you didn’t know that as well.
Well, this 404 error page focuses on two things:
- There’s a funny GIF of Hillary having trouble with her train ticket (obviously for an emotional connection)
- You won’t struggle if you’re looking to sign up as a volunteer (this, my friend, is a call to action)
Way to go Hillary. Way to go.
Then we have MailChimp. Yes, those email marketing guys who managed to turn an otherwise boring task into something fun. Theirs is one of those 404 error pages that tell a great story just by sitting there. They’ve coupled the well-known chimp with animated smoke, giving you an error page that’s every part the brand.
A Behance project designed by Thapwaris Chinsirirathkul using Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator and Adobe Edge Animate, this 404 error page offers you the perfect solution for that moment when the (stuff that stinks) hits the fan.
Here we see astronauts lost in space trying to get help by digging a “404” sign on the moon. They need help these poor guys, you know, like your lost readers.
FYI, this website belongs to Daniel Karcher Film Design Studios, the guys who had a hand in great films and shows such as Ice Age, The Exorcism of Emily Rose, The Blair Witch Project and…wait for it…Family Guy! And we are just scratching the surface here guys, these guys have been involved in many other projects you love.
Now, if these guys played a part in these masterpieces, what would you expect of their 404 error page? Why don’t you reserve your comment until you feast your eyes on an error page the like of which you’ve never seen before? You can even catch a train ride on there, but first mute the tab or remove your headphones.
Most times, simple is good. No, scratch that. Simple is golden. After all…
“The epitome of sophistication is utter simplicity.” – Maya Angelou
Hey you shinobi, what think you of this 404 error page? Keep it simple and sexy guys. Works all the time. Oh by the way, these guys prepared you a little game, known as N: The Way of a Ninja, to test your ninja skills.
Blue Fountain Media
Speaking of games, who remembers Pacman? I will be honest with you guys. I have seen 404 error pages of all shapes and sizes, but I have never once laid my eyes on one like this.
For starters, this bad boy doesn’t look anything like a 404 error page; it’s loaded with lots of awesome content and then some.
That’s not all buddy, these guys will even let you play some Pacman! Don’t even lie, you’re choking on that wave of nostalgia right this minute. Oh Pacman, where at thou?
Home Star Runner
I don’t know what to make of this 404 error page. You see how I’m supposed to be the writer here, and never lack words? Well, take that and throw it to the dogs because I have no words in my vocab to explain the affair that is Home Star Runner’s 404 error page. Other than these guys make cartoons and you should prepare for a show.
“Hello Captain, what is that?”
“That thing over there. It appears we are in direct collision course as well, and… it’s coming fast!”
“Hell naw! That’s the 404 error page!”
“Oh no, may the Four-oh-force be with you.”
Well, did I pull that off? Made you chuckle perhaps? No? No biggie, at least I tried. But guess who does more than just trying as far as 404 error pages go? Star Wars baby. The Star Wars franchise.
Don’t know what to do with your 404 error page? Have you thought of using impressive visuals to impress your readers? Works for Audiko if you’re in the least interested.
These guys help you to make ringtones from your favorite songs, and even though they’re based out of Kiev, Ukraine, their 404 error page features an outstanding illustration of London. Yap, and the visual comes complete with the obligatory double-decker bus, the Big Ben’s tower and Sherlock Holmes just to mention a few.
I just don’t get why they think Rot Weyler of the I Took A Pill In Ibiza fame is a Kenyan artist. Perhaps it’s just marketing, but their 404 error page is a killer.
Walk With You
These guys are all about life coaching and helping you discover unlimited possibilities when you lose your grip. And they are darn serious about this as well as design if their 404 error is anything to go by.
They make you feel – even though you’ve lost the way – you can discover your way back home. The waterfall graphic and bold typography on the 404 error page pack quite a punch if you ask me.
Your error page needn’t be the page where the lost come to die. It can be your chance to reaffirm your brand awareness. Case in point is Lego’s 404 error page, which uses a funny visual as well as Lego’s iconic characters.
The page is simple in design, but the thrill you’ll have on this memory lane is undeniable.
Final Words on 404 Error Pages
404 error pages need not be mundane. Your error page could turn lost readers into loyal customers in a single click. It all depends on you, and how you’d like to use the 404 error page. If building awesome 404 error pages doesn’t tickle your fancy, perhaps you could get rid of it once and for all, and redirect your users to another page. You know, something like what we did on this site.
We hope this post inspires you to build 404 error pages you’ll be proud off. Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below!