February 2, 2012

Are You Still Supporting IE7?

If you are wondering whether or not to support IE7 on your next or current project, the answer is probably, ‘No.’

I asked myself that question while working on my redesign. So, I looked at my site traffic to gain some insight. Of course, my audience is comprised mostly of nerds, so it’s not surprising that a mere 0.2% of visitors to this site are using IE7. Thus I’ve¬†discontinued support for anything less than IE8.

About the same time I was beginning another project, on a suite of sites, with a much less technical audience. In fact, Internet Explorer was just tipping the scale at 51%. Though, only 6% of the total site visitors were using IE7. A look at the previous 6 months revealed a rapid decline as well; down from 10%. I decided to drop support for IE7 on these sites as well. Done and done.

Sudden Disappearance

How did IE7 disappear so much faster than IE6? It’s no mystery. Over the last year, there’s been a concerted effort to end IE6, and in general, encourage people to upgrade their browsers. Well, it paid off. Not only did IE6 folks upgrade, but a lot of people with outdated browsers made the jump.

Though, don’t expect IE8 to drop-off as quickly. Windows XP cannot upgrade beyond IE8, and there are still a lot of XP machines that will likely be around for awhile.

What Will You Do?

Analyze the Data First

Every site has a unique audience. The best way to decide which browsers to support is to analyze site traffic. If you’re not already, use Google Analytics, which is free, or another service to monitor site traffic and visitors.