Will "the Mighty" Strohl

Web Browser Market Share from My Perspective

The trend recently seems to be that comments and topics are brought up on twitter, and they end up growing to be something more outside of it – especially in the world of DotNetNuke® that I have immersed myself in.  Today was no different.  A fellow DNN twibe member and also a member of the Orlando DotNetNuke® Users Group (ODUG), Mike van der Meulen, gave me a friendly jab about using FireFox.  He said:

God! Why do you people all use FF, the rest of the world doesn’t :-)

That provoked a thought in me, “what is the current market share for the web browsers?”  Not being a scientific study, I proceed to check 3 sources: my blog, W3Schools, and RezHub.  They each have a different demographic.  W3Schools is visited primarily by techies.  RezHub has more of a mainstream flow of visitors.  Finally, while my blog tends to lean towards the techie visitor, it does have a mix of both.  Here is what I found…

W3Schools

W3Schools has a very techie following, meaning that most of their visitors have a technical background of some kind.  They either are professionals in the IT industry, or they dabble in it in some way.  That being said, most techies tend to use the most trendy applications and gadgets.  As of today, the W3Schools website is showing the FireFox accounts for 47.7% of their visitors, and Internet Explorer collectively shares 41% across its various versions.

W3Schools Visitor Browsers

RezHub.com

As I mentioned before, RezHub is frequented by a more mainstream web audience.  There are all types and ages of people that come to this website, and has a very high number of unique daily visitors.  It is a very clear indication of what the general public is using to browse the Internet.  However, contrary to the techies, a mainstream Internet visitor is much less likely to change the web browser that they are using due to all kinds of reasons.  Mostly, Internet Explorer is generally pre-installed and set as the default web browser of nearly all computers.

Rezhub.com Visitor Browsers

In what appears to be a drastic reversal in market share for the web browsers, RezHub’s visitors clearly favor the Internet Explorer family of web browsers at 64.48% of the visitors, while FireFox makes up a measly 24.74% of the market share.

My Blog: The Mighty Blog

Now, we look at the favored web browser of my visitors here on this blog.  The results look very similar to W3Schools, in that the trend clearly leans to the FireFox web browser at 45.52%, whereas Internet Explorer comes in second this time with 40.59% of the market share.  Contrary to my original beliefs, it would appear that most of my visitors are also techies.  I guess I need to post more food reviews, and some more of my photo work. :)

The Mighty Blog Visitor Browsers

In Conclusion

Most of you were probably reading this to get an idea of which web browser(s) you should be covering more thoroughly in your development efforts.  There appears to no longer be a conclusive stat that covers all demographics like there used to be in the IE 5 days. 

We need to more closely consider our audience that we intend to visit our website than ever before.  For example, if we were building a site that is targeted at delivering technical content to our visitors, we would probably want to make sure that FireFox renders the best out of all of the web browsers.  In contrast, maybe a website whose purpose is to deliver cooking recipes would target Internet Explorer as their primary web browser.

In my own personal opinion though, you should be targeting both Internet Explorer and FireFox simultaneously.  Even if your visitors are clearly using one web browser over another, you want to deliver the best possible experience to your visitors.  This holds true for all use cases, including those where your visitors are not purchasing a product, but rather are receiving free content.  If you have a competitor whose site functions and looks better in their favorite browser, you’re going to lose that visitor. 

Let’s face facts, all sites exist to either earn money or traffic (usually both).  Ignoring either major web browser will certainly lead to you losing visitors from the other browser demographic.  I say develop for both, and this will also ensure a more stable future.  You never know when and how fast one web browser will steal loyalty from the other.



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