Browser Wars

Many folks we work with are not sure what  a browser is much less which one they use.  The video on this page will help define what a browser is as opposed to your operating system or a search engine.

There are several browsers out there to choose from, and your small business' website should be viewable without any trouble in any of them.  Because each browser is created by different companies and parses the content of your webpage differently this can be a difficult task.  One way that webmasters and design companies have tried to overcome this issue is by using what is called web standards.  This is a set of code tags which are universally recognized by any browser you may be using.  Unfortunately, because of the nature of web standards compliance, it usually means that your website is catering to the lowest common denominator between all the browsers out there.  This limits some of the features you can have on your website overall.  However this is usually best because you do not want to alienate the segment of your prospective buyers who may be using a browser that is different than the one you might design your site for.

Image via Wikipedia

Overall Internet Explorer is the most used browser as it is installed standard with any windows os installation.  However, many geeks and normal folks do not like internet explorer for many reasons, not the least of which is how slowly it runs.  Firefox on the other hand is very quick, but it is very unforgiving to web designers in how it parses code.  If your code tells it to do something, no matter how stupid it looks, it will do it.  Whereas explorer tends to see issues and correct them, sometimes to the chagrin of the designer.   So if your website looks right in Internet Explorer then it will look right to well over 50% of all surfers.  However firefox and chrome both parse websites in a similar way, so if it looks bad in firefox, it probably looks bad in chrome and those two together account for almost 50% themselves.

If you havent done so before, take a look at your website in a different browser than you typically use.  You may be surprised at how much different it looks.  If your web design company cannot make it right in all browsers or if you dont want to deal with these kinds of headaches, then give Your-Web-Guys a call.  Because, as always...

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