Microsoft Live Search Solves 404 Error Problem


No one likes generic 404 error pages. Site visitors have to click the back button and start their search over. Most times, they give up on the site.

To solve that problem, Microsoft Live Search will now enable Web site owners to create error pages that recommend help even if the exact URL isn’t available.

The Web Page Error Toolkit is a customizable Web app that extracts keywords from the search and delivers relevant search results in a custom error page.

Here are the details on the Web Page Error DTK:

For large web sites with extensive amounts of content, 2 to 10 percent of traffic is looking for pages that either don’t exist or have been moved. Most web servers return a generic 404 error page or a sitemap when a user’s desired page cannot be found. These unhelpful pages often result in a dead end for users.

With Microsoft’s Web Page Error Toolkit, you can create dynamic 404 pages that contain customized error messages along with search results seeded with relevant keywords to help your users move past the missing page and find the information they need.

The Toolkit is a customizable application that replaces the default error page on your IIS server. The Toolkit enables you to use Live Search (or any search engine) to return results for the specified domain and locale, control the number of results returned on your page, choose whether to offer spelling corrections, and customize your error message.

You also have the option of choosing from several keyword extraction strategies that are included with the install, or providing your own implementation.

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