If you have ever viewed your iWeb site in Internet Explorer (and of course you should have done when you tested it just before publishing) you may well have noticed that it looked a little strange; not as you designed it!
There are a variety of reasons why your iWeb site looks like it has been chewed by a dog and then spat out again and here they are explained along with a few tips to help you get around the problems.
Before I start though I would like to explain the reason for this post. You may be thinking “why should we bother about PC users?”. Internet Explorer (at the time of writing) makes up for 41% of the world’s browser population. That’s a lot of people who could be looking at your iWeb site, but can’t.
So why does my site look rubbish in Internet Explorer?
As I mentioned above there are several reasons as to why this is happening. To begin with there is the way Internet Explorer (IE) handles the CSS created by iWeb. CSS is the part of your iWeb site code that decides how your web-site looks and like most things in life there are certain rules and standards which apply to it. Unfortunately IE interprets (and therefore applies) these rules differently than other browsers. Earlier versions of IE were particularly bad and really mucked about with margins and padding. The only way around layout problems is testing, adjusting and testing again until it all looks good.
To have a look how your site would look in IE you can use the Develop menu in Safari, select ‘User Agent’ and then the version of IE you want to test in.
Of course it also effects the blog too. If you want IE users to read your iWeb blog you will have to think of something other than iWeb. There are many free blogging tools available such as Blogger, WordPress or Typepad; it is then simply a case of using an iFrame to insert the blogpage into your iWeb site. Alternatively you can just link to the blog and let it have a different URL.
IE is in no uncertain terms a bit bloated. This means that loading speeds get a little slowed up to say the least. When your iWeb site is crammed full of surplus code and beautiful (but extremely large) images your loading speed will become a crawl.
You can optimized your website so it loads much faster with WebCrusher from Rage Software. can also make your iWeb website more compatible with Internet Explorer.
Those damn gray backgrounds…
Early versions of IE (and by that I mean IE6 and previous) could not handle the image format PNG. It’s a shame really as many of the images you find in iWeb are PNGs. Why? Because they allow you to have transparent backgrounds to images. Since IE7 the situation has improved but you may want to consider using JPGs or GIFs instead; unless you already have a dull gray background to your site.
Finally we all know our iWeb sites work well (most of the time) with FireFox and Safari, so one ‘coverall’ solution would be to add a small banner to your iWeb site’s home-page along the lines of:
“This web-site is at its best when viewed in a standards compliant bowser such as FireFox or Safari”
You can even add links to the relevant download sites too.
Do you have other problems with your iWeb site and Internet Explorer? Why not leave a comment and let us know.