With the eminent arrival of IE 8 and the coming of Google Chrome we’ve noticed a huge rise in conversations by web development companies, as to whether or not they should drop IE 6 as a compatible browser on new builds.
Lets face it, there isn’t a web developer out there who doesn’t swear and curse at Bill Gates and his Microsoft team at least during the browser testing phase of a new website build.
In-house we’ve been discussing the dilemma of “should we” or “shouldn’t we” continue to support site compatibility of IE6. Should we make a stand against it and rather focus our efforts on the education of site visitors to use far better browsers?
The problem is, however much we hate IE 6 and want to stop dealing with it, the reality is the visitors to our sites still use it. We spent this week going through the analytics on all our websites. The lowest visitor rate percentage from IE 6 was 10% and the highest was 39%. Those sites targeting an international audience were less but those targeting the SA market were in the 25-40% range.
So as a company that promotes “profitable websites” and with an average of 26.84% of users to all our sites using IE 6, taking a stand against it by refusing to ensure compatibility, would be detrimental to the profitability of our customers site. Therefore, however much we distain Microsoft and their non-standards compliant browsers we simply can’t ignore them.