Browser Compatibility: An extremely important issue that could dramatically decrease website conversions and completely kill your business.
Real World Example: Earlier today I was signing up for a new web-based service (company name left out to prevent further embarrassment) and upon filling out all of my information and clicking “sign up”, nothing happened. The sign up page just kept refreshing with all of my information still inside the form. I proceeded to contact the site’s help through their live chat system and was told that the “IT department has checked and you’re using an older browser which may not be compatible”. (I’m using FireFox 32.0.3 with the newest version being FireFox 33.)
Solution: I was sent a link in the live chat session that brought me to a different sign up page that worked right away.
Conclusion: I’m going to go out on a limb and say that most people would’ve gotten fed up after clicking “sign up” for the third time to no avail and would’ve went to a competitor’s website (there are 5 I can think of off the top of my head). Very few people will take the time to contact help just to simply set-up a brand new account- that process should be the easiest of all, especially if you’re in a competitive space and depend on web based conversions for lead gen.
Being that part of my job includes helping companies with their digital presence to increase conversions, I was obligated to find out what was going wrong. In conclusion, if you’re a serious business and you’re launching a new version of your website or even making updates, have your IT person/team work through the site on different browsers including prior versions going back at least 6 months. It is NOT safe to assume that everyone of your potential new customers are updating their browsers regularly.
If you do find an issue with a particular browser or version, than include text on your site that says “Click this link if you’re using an older version of (Firefox, Internet Explorer)” or something to that extent. Don’t force people who aren’t even your customers yet to jump through hoops to get a working link through your live chat customer service rep!