What Are Browser Compatibility Issues?
When a browser like Google Chrome displays your website differently on its platform than, say, Mozilla Firefox or Internet Explorer, it means aspects of your website are not seen as designed or may not function properly. The website’s code must be fixed.
Do you own a screwdriver? Then you know you cannot have just one. A very long time ago, there was only one screwdriver head, the slot head, which everyone used until 1932 when John P. Thompson of Pennsylvania sold his star-head design variation to Henry F. Phillips. The Phillips screwdriver as it was then, and is now, known was a game-changer. However, that cannot be said for dozens, probably hundreds, of driver-head variations available now. And so, your toolbox bulges at its seams with multi drivers.
Product variation, even slight, is the typical way of promoting something new. It inhabits every realm of life, (hello, neon coloured flowers) including the world of web and mobile browsers, with all their subtle variations in between.
A website browser’s job is to translate code used to build your website as something viewable and user-friendly.
That all consumers see your website as designed is crucial for a client’s first impressions of your business. If, for example, a form on your site is un-fillable on a particular browser, your credibility is diminished. Yes, your business can redeem itself but the fewer browser incompatibility issues, the better.
At SmartWebPros, we are fully aware of the cruciality of a dynamic website so, fully, half of our staff are certified website developers. Writers and management round out the other half of our powerhouse company to ensure the focus remains on getting your beautiful and responsive website noticed.
Code is the land where website developers live, and HTML, SCC, and various scripts are their tools.
Thank goodness blog post writers and most business owners do not need to know the details behind building websites. Code-land is not an idyllic place where, with a wave of a magical code-wand, browser compatibility is achieved.
It is developers, those designers/ technogeeks, that spend many years in post-secondary training to learn how to translate their eye-catching designs into code and understand the variations in browsers so we can experience websites in as simplistic and efficient ways as possible.
Because of these browser differences, it is not uncommon to have slight variables in the look of a site on certain browsers. These small compromises are always better than seeing main elements function incorrectly.
Here’s a simple list of what each coding achieves:
- HyperText Markup Language (HTML) is the skeleton of a website. In a document-like format, it lays out what elements (paragraphs, images, tables, etc.) will exist on the website.
- Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) add to the skeleton and give it style. It informs all of the HTML how it should look (colour, size, shape) and where on the page it should appear.
Professional website developers check for cross-browser compatibility issues in your website code before they set it free into the world.
Cross-browser compatibility is achieved when your website looks the same on all browsers. Read Wikipedia’s explanation of browser-wars to understand more about the dawn of cross-browser compatibility issues. These changes are not always easily apparent.
- HTML, CSS and various scripts are hardly ever read and translated the same.
- W3C standards, mentioned earlier, are often changed or deviated from, in browsers.
- Your website graphics are implemented into browsers’ operating systems sometimes in proprietary ways.
- Screen resolutions of desktop, laptop, mobile, and tablets made by thousands of companies, all with their unique schema, are almost as varied as snowflakes.
Various ways developers prevent cross-browser incompatibility:
You will see that using a professional development website team who knows how to handle these common issues always means fewer headaches and more possibilities for a website.
- Web designers/ developers are aware that some Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) are not compatible with every browser. The same can be said for HTML editors too.
- Professional developers recommend Flash be uninstalled; it is a deprecated technology that is no longer in development and is not supported by any modern browsers.
- Add alternate (ALT) text to image links so they can be interpreted by users with disabilities.
- W3C compliance means your website has less chance of non-performance on different browsers. A developer works to achieve this compliance code as one of the final tasks for your website.
- Free online browser-testing tools that help developers test their websites are often unreliable. The best way to test a website is by testing it live.
- Simplifying website code, of course, helps diminish browser compatibility issues.
- Apple’s Safari has a notoriously complex browser system that creates challenges for developers.
We have built longstanding relationships with many of our clients, who like you, are looking for a company to grow with that has the ability and time to focus attention on their website design and performance.