Internet marketing resources, ecommerce web site design tutorials and  just for fun - free cell phone ringtones!
  Taming the Beast - quality web marketing and ecommerce development services

Custom errror pages & redirects

Posted by Michael Bloch in web development (Sunday October 15, 2006 )

Ever linked to a page on your site incorrectly, or have someone link to you incorrectly and only found out about it months later? Perhaps deleted a page and thought nothing more of it?

Maybe you renamed/moved a page; only to find that people had been trying to access the page through old search engine listings or links from other sites?

You may be losing thousands of visitors and search engine rankings through these snafus, but there are a couple of easy ways to address the problem.

The use of custom error pages can certainly help to retain visitors on your site in the case of an incorrect link or deleted page.

Usually when a visitor tries to access a page that’s not on your site, they’ll be presented with a standard browser 404 error – “File Not Found” message. Most people’s reaction to this isn’t to investigate your site further, but to go elsewhere.

With a custom error page, you can present 404 messages as a special page on your site which can entice people to hang around and explore further.

It’s quick and easy to do – learn more in my tutorial on creating custom error pages

If you’re renaming or moving files, it presents a similar challenge – even more so as you still want people who were looking for that page to be presented with the relocated information immediately.

While your site structure may be updated when you make the change, there’s still all the links from other sites and search engine listings which may take some time to update.

In the case of links from other sites, those site owners may never change them. It can be quite a laborious task to chase up other webmasters to ask them to update a link. In regards to search engines, the renamed pages may lose their ranking power or be treated as duplicate content.

In this scenario, custom error pages aren’t the best solution, but there is a relatively simple way of seamlessly redirecting visitors to renamed or moved pages – learn more in my tutorial on 301 redirects.


Comments for Custom errror pages & redirects

No comments yet.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.