I have built an e-commerce app but I didn't have a lot of time so I decided to build the app compatible with cutting-edge browsers.

so of the features are not working and some them are working less attractively on older browsers.

do you thing it is a good idea to recommend browser type on a e-commerce web site? for example like below;

Poo Corporation recommends latest version of Google Chrome

  • 1
    Browser favourism is bad. However recommending that people with older browsers (IE8, FF3.6) upgrade (to IE9, FF5) is acceptable. Of course this depends on your client
    – Raynos
    Jul 18, 2011 at 15:07
  • 1
    That's a good point. A browser upgrade is more likely to happen that a browser change. In reality, though users of old browsers are often stuck because of their old operating system on their old hardware or their old corporate policy.
    – Itai
    Jul 18, 2011 at 15:10

4 Answers 4


A browser recommendation is usually a Do Not Enter sign. Unless you have an extremely popular service with unique features, it is extremely unlikely that people will change browsers for you. Therefore they are highly likely to simply leave.

This does not mean you have to write code that works perfectly for every browser. In a support page somewhere you can have a list of tested browsers. Only people seriously interested in your service and experiencing problems will end up there. Those are more likely to listen to you.

The best thing to do is to look at your stats and see which browsers are most used to access your service. You should support at least 80% of visitors, I recommend 90% even but that depends on the difficulties you may have to support certain features on less common browsers (some of them may be fairly new even).


Well, I would test all major browsers and their older version (IE7, IE8, etc.) and I would note those that don't seem to best render your website. Then, I will simply write a piece of code that would only show browser recommendation for those that fall in the category of browser that don't render the pages appropriatly.

I also believe that suggesting to update the browser is a better practice than suggesting a browser. Most people prefer stability and they don't want to learn to use a new browser.


Ditto most of the other answers. Though you should at least support IE6+. If a visitor came using IE5 or less, I'd be inclined to block and ask them to upgrade. Probably no loss as someone with a browser that is that out of date is unlikely to buy online anyway.

Have a look at Chromeframe. It is a plug-in for older browsers such as IE6 which allows them to run Chrome within IE and thus get the support of the Chrome features without the need to actually upgrade their system. For the web developer, all you need is a little javascript and a metatag on your page and users of old browsers will be directed to install Chromeframe, after which they should be able to view your site without problem.


When using jQuery use this plugin.


That will popup a message just for IE6 users only (you could change to also inclue IE7,8). The benifit of this is:

  1. Only people with older browsers will see it
  2. It gives the user the option to dimiss the message so it will not display again.
  • why the negative score?
    – Daveo
    Jul 19, 2011 at 23:44
  • I think other people have downvoted your answer because it does not really answer the original question - whether making recommendations about browsers to your website visitors is a good idea.
    – Martey
    Jul 20, 2011 at 11:32
  • Thanks Martey. I see but I thought it did answer the question. As in yes it is a good idea but here is how you should recommened
    – Daveo
    Jul 20, 2011 at 23:12
  • @Daveo: using jQuery browser detection to show a message on IE 6/7 it's like attempting to enter in your house through the window instead of using the door: webmasters.stackexchange.com/questions/4769/… Jul 25, 2011 at 19:22
  • Normally yes but the OP tagged the question with jQuery and with the plugin I mentioned you can do detection and display a message all with 1 line of code. So I do not see the problem in this case
    – Daveo
    Jul 25, 2011 at 22:10

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.