03/11/2008

RESEARCH

404 pages

We have commented on 404 pages before - those little unhelpful pages that appear on an e-tailer's site especially when those products aren't in stock or available anymore. For websites with a higher product churn, this can be a frequent event.


We have commented on 404 pages before - those little unhelpful pages that appear on an e-tailer's site especially when those products aren't in stock or available anymore. For websites with a higher product churn, this can be a frequent event.
Here's how a few of our peers handle "page not found" scenarios:
Boden (too technical and not really helpful, although complete)
John Lewis (offers some tools instead)
White Company (sends you to the home page)
Asos (technical message + redirects to the home page)
Argos (big browser error - ouch!)
Marks & Spencer (very nice and wins the award - shows populare categories & makes alternate recommendations, but then again, we are talking Amazon!)
The bottom line - try to engage your visitor in some other way and offer help. Imagine how a (good) shop assistant would handle it in the real world and automate that.
On another note, I read in Practical Ecommerce about a Google Widget for helping customers somewhat more:
Google 404 widget

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