When a link or button is clicked and the user is shown a 500 error page because something went wrong technically, what should happen when the page is refreshed? 1. Go to where the user intended to go or? 2. Reload the same 500 page?
Provide clear next steps for the user.
Start with thinking about the key workflow for a 500 page, i.e. what do you want to accomplish?
A very typical 500 workflow is:
- Inform the user that something has gone wrong
- You may also provide additional information if it's available.
- Provide user with a clear next step. This may be:
- Return to home page button
- Attempt to recover your document button
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Here's an example...there is a clear top-to-bottom visual flow, with a clear action button at the bottom.
If the user refreshes a 500 page, it should not take her to a new page...that can be disorienting (same action, different outcome!).