Everyone has a favorite internet browser. You might be reading this post with the latest version of Google Chrome, Firefox, or even Microsoft Edge. But did you know that the browser you choose can impact the way you view websites?
As designers and developers, it’s our job to make sure that your website looks great with any browser on the market. Keep reading to learn why you need cross-browser compatibility.
How Browsers Translate Websites
All websites are built from code. That code dictates the color of the background, the fonts that are used, and even the placement of images or text.
Browsers interpret and render this code, creating a visible version of your website. Because every browser is different, there’s a chance that the code will be interpreted differently than the developer intended. An image might appear smaller in one browser than another, or an important element might be misplaced.
Browser compatibility errors are usually visual, but in some cases, they can also impact the functionality of your website. A great developer will test your site across multiple browsers to make sure that the final product is error-free.
Testing for Cross-Browser Compatibility
You might be surprised at the number of different browsers that are used to access the internet. Even though most people use Firefox or Chrome, those aren’t the only two choices. Apple users surf with Safari, and many Microsoft users use Internet Explorer or Edge. Opera, Pale Moon, and other browsers also see consistent use. Your designer will check as many as possible during the development process.
Websites also need to be tested across different versions of the same browser. Users don’t always update their software, and your website needs to look great under any circumstances.
Finally, the device you’re using can also impact the way your website looks. Before a site goes live, most developers check for compatibility with several different phones, tablets, and computer monitors.
Designing Compatible Websites from the Start
The best way to ensure that a website looks great across multiple browsers is to design it with compatibility in mind. Clean, well-written code is used to deliver the same information to every platform. Responsive design techniques make sure that headers, sidebars, and other design elements can change shape depending on the size of the screen.
At Precision Creative, we start thinking about cross-browser compatibility at the beginning of our design process. Whether a client visits your website from the most recent version of Google Chrome or a unique browser on their smartphone, we’ll make sure that your content looks exactly as it’s meant to.