How Come Your Website Looks Different in Different Browsers?

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It doesn’t always work out that way. Website source codes like HTML and CSS are often interpreted or displayed differently by different browsers, resulting in the same website looking and feeling different.

You don’t have to be concerned if these differences don’t impact the functionality of the site.

In light of that, in this article, I’d like to present the most common reasons your website may look different from browser to browser, and what you can do in order to minimize these discrepancies.

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Website elements that are common to all browsers appear differently

Browser-to-browser differences when viewing a website might be due to this, and there’s usually no need to worry about it.

Your website may use HTML elements such as radio buttons, normal buttons, error messages, and so on, which are usually styled in specific ways at the browser level (this is not true if you have custom CSS and HTML styling these elements in a certain way).

It’s important to note that these subtle stylistic differences are a function of each browser, and won’t affect the functionality of your website. You won’t be able to use the “browser default” style if you do feel the need to standardize everything anyway. Instead, you’ll need to manually style these elements using CSS or HTML.

Some HTML/CSS may not be supported by all browsers

It’s a little trickier this time. CSS and HTML are always evolving and changing. Browsers need to be ready to accommodate these changes whenever something new is added to HTML or CSS, a new version is released, or something is removed from one of them.

Flexbox is a great example of this in CSS3 (the latest iteration of CSS). Flexible Box is a handy, easy way to lay out your HTML pages – it ensures HTML elements behave predictably as the layout changes, resizes, and so on.

There are still some browsers that don’t support flexbox because it is a relatively new addition to CSS. These browsers will not understand flexbox, so they will display a broken or poorly designed web page, even though it looks fine on another browser.

This type of issue can be addressed in a number of ways. Typically, multiple stylesheets will be used to resolve the problem. Your website should be designed and tested first using only one browser – whichever is most popular among your users.

In order to create different stylesheets that work specifically for browsers that don’t support a particular HTML / CSS property, you will need to test everything on that browser. You may not be able to ensure a uniform “look” for your website, but at least you will be able to ensure no one can see any broken links.

Differences in hardware or “computer settings”

Your website might look different on two different computers if you’re using two different browsers.

Every time you switch computers, everything changes. The second computer may have a different screen resolution, or the color balance may be different on the first. It’s almost a certainty that something will look different between two operating systems when you view your website.

The differences in sizes, color balances, and so on are usually the results of computer-level changes. Except for screen resolution issues, most of these differences are beyond your control.

Depending on the resolution of the visitor, you can modify your CSS to restructure/restyle elements on your website. This improves performance and improves your website’s appearance under certain resolution levels.

Now is the time to upgrade your web design

We are here to help if you need a new website design or an old one redesigned, or if you just want more information about design in general!

We have seen it all at Geeks5G, a resourceful web development agency in Austin, TX. It would be our pleasure to build you and your company a beautiful site that’s compatible with all browsers.

Get a free quote or more information from us today!

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