Important Notice Regarding Your Website

Um... Hello IE8Internet Explorer could be affecting how your clients websites are displayed…… and I’m not just talking about IE6! IE8 has finally thrown it’s hat into the ring and is a reinforced weapon in Microsoft’s fight to maintain their prominent market share in web browser usage. Web professionals, like you and I, code new sites to cater for the Ogre better known as IE6. Using hacks and fixes to make the website display as desired. We get these sites signed off by the client, the site goes live and we get paid. Now here’s something to think about… Do you support future versions of browsers?

The scenario

You build a site pre IE8, launch it without any issues and the client is singing your praises. Then one day out of the blue they call you up and complain the website is broken in IE8! What do you say? The question is do you support their website through future releases of web browsers? If you haven’t stated you don’t then you could be liable to fixing it, especially if you stated in your initial pitch that their website will work cross browser.

The effect

Now 10 clients call you up and demand the same fixes as in scenario A, and they don’t want to pay extra, I’d say your screwed! Big agencies have potentially hundreds of clients, all with the possibility of calling up and causing chaos. They typically are covered legally as their initial specification is water tight and covers future browser releases and support.

The solution

By being efficient and actively taking the first move to combat this issue you can save yourself a few sleepless nights. Make the first move and contact all of your clients detailing the news of this latest browser and the potential effect it could have on their website. A letter or email from you makes the client feel protected online and serves as a reputation booster for your company. Being proactive and offering the answer to some potentially bad news that is yet to occur can really solidify the relationship between you and your client. Within the email you can start with simple facts, like:

With UK usage estimated to be around 65%, Internet Explorer is by far the most popular tool used to browse websites – including yours! But beware, big changes are afoot. In reaction to customer demand, or perhaps just off their own back on this occasion, Microsoft have recently launched a new, upgraded Internet Explorer Version 8 (IE8).

new browser implications:

This new browser brings with it resolutions to issues Microsoft were aware of e.g. malicious viruses and the like, but it also brings with it potential compatibility issues affecting the viewing of websites. The main concern for many e-businesses is that the way the new upgraded version of Internet Explorer interprets their website has changed so that it won’t be completely “backward compatible”. In other words, it’s likely to have formatting implications for anyone with a website developed prior to the launch of IE8. Whilst we always build websites that are compatible across all major browsers (both current and older versions), this new development may mean that your web pages do not display correctly when viewed using Internet Explorer 8.

Then your solution:

As a valued customer and as part of our commitment to you, we’re offering to conduct a full IE8 compatibility audit on your website.

Now set your price:

For a fee of £xx plus VAT we will thoroughly test your site in IE8 and along with fixing any minor issues, we’ll provide a report detailing any changes that need to be made to ensure it works with the new version.

Finish with a clear call to action:

If you’d like further details or for us to audit your site, then please reply to this email and a member of our team will contact you.

The outcome

Being proactive in this scenario has enabled your business to overcome a common issue and could save you many hours of tedious work that could be unpaid.

New browsers typically thorough up a set of new issues can can learnt and used time and time again in an efficient manner. You can also fix multiple websites in one go and earn some extra revenue. The third important thing is that you’re communicating with your clients. Dormant accounts could be revitalised and further work could generated through simple being proactive and protecting both yours and your client’s business interests.

For further information about IE8 visit Microsoft.com.

Gary Hartley

Gary Hartley is The Floating Frog. A seasoned freelance web designer with skills in UI/UX, CRO design, WordPress, branding, PSD-HTML conversions and more. Got a project you need to start or take to the next level? Please, get in touch!