Customizing the Error Page
When a visitor lands on a page that doesn't exist, the default error (404) page is displayed. It contains a brief statement informing the visitor that the page doesn't exist.
If you wish to edit the message that is shown on the default error page, you must create a custom error page. This provides the following benefits:
- It allows you to write a specific error message targeted towards your visitors.
- The error page will display the same header and footer as on your home page. Thus a visitor can search your site using the search box at the top of the page, whereas the default error page only allows visitors to search the entire SFU website.
How do I create a Custom Error Page?
- In the WCM, select the home page. In the right panel, you should see the first level pages.
- Create a new page and give it a meaningful title, e.g., "Page not Found". In the Name field, enter "404-not-found". The custom error page must have this name for it to work. For the page template, select Blank Template (new CLF). Click the Create button.
- Right-click the newly created page in the right panel and select Properties...
- The Page Properties dialogue box will appear. Expand the Navigation Options toggle and check the Hide in Navigation option. This will prevent the custom error page from appearing in your site's main navigation.
- Click the Advanced tab and check the Hide breadcrumbs option. The Hide Navigation option should already be checked. Click the OK button to save the changes.
- Open the page in the Editing Window, insert a Text component and add your custom error message.
- After completing the error page, activate it.
- To test the error page, enter the address of page that doesn't exist underneath your site, e.g., www.sfu.ca/cms/non-existant-page.html. Your custom error page should appear.