The recent migration of my website to a technology stack based on Gatsby, React and GraphQL has also been an incentive for me to reconsider its design, including user experience and visual identity aspects.
The ongoing effort includes the dreaded, often overlooked, 404 landing page. Top-of-mind for me is getting better at seizing the user experience opportunities that come with the user being lost and clueless, providing her/him with multiple paths to progress and recovery.
New and overdue in this iteration is a search box front and center that invites visitors to specifically define what they are looking for. In addition to providing directions to the home page or other important pages, it is an essential tool to keep stranded visitors engaged.
I have also been working on the copy and visual design of that page, aiming to inject some empathy and humor into a genuinely frustrating experience, seeking to transform the situation into a conversion and branding opportunity.
Created in Photoshop this illustration, placing the viewer in the position of a hiker lost in a remote and desertic location under a blazin sun, as vultures circle above, is now part of this website’s new 404 landing page, illustrating and acknowledging in a somewhat dramatic way what the user is feeling.