A special guest post from Jane-Anne, our "Queen of User Experience."
You have to admire Google. I do, because they gave me an opportunity to talk about something related to User Experience (although really, everything is related to the user experience. See my follow-up post to our mascot blog entry as well for proof!).
Too often, web server error messages are full of technical-ese and don’t tell the user what is going on, what happened or what they should do. And too often, marketers are missing a really nice way to strengthen, or at least keep, the relationship with the user and build upon their brand.
All it takes is a little creativity. Say something in simple, understandable language and if you can, make sure it reflects the tone, style and culture of your organization. The DG employee who received the Google error message said it made her laugh. This is a big change from a user who would get the standard 404 error message and be left confused or worse – frustrated. Even better, it won’t get ignored like the typical error message will, and you might even get some viral activity around it like this Google one did.
At the very least, we’ll think you’re pretty cool.