February 8th, 2010

searchtools.com

Interfaces for Search No-Matches Pages: a Pick and a Pan

On your site, intranet or enterprise search engine, what happens if a search engine finds no match for the search terms?

Below the cut are two different approaches, one slightly verbose and the other so terse as to be baffling. Look a them, look at yours, look at my page on good things to do with the no matches page, and see if there's something you can do better.

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Readers: if you have any good or bad examples, or "before" and "after" screenshots, link me to them, please! I'll post the best ones, by which I mean both good helpful interfaces and really awful ones.