Browser technology now enables us to add some interesting features to our web sites and create a true multimedia experience. While this is all well and good, there are those of us who are happy with our text-only or older graphical browsers that don’t see the need to “upgrade” with every passing week. Gratuitous use of bleeding-edge web technology may seem cutting edge and hip, and there will be a few web geeks that have what it takes to gain the full experience of your interactive web site. However, are you cutting yourself off from those who have yet to or are unable to download the latest and greatest? Mainstream users care more about useful content and your ability to offer good customer service, and if you compromise this with your love of the latest Web technology, you lose in the end.
I certainly don’t discourage the advancement of these Web technologies, and I must say that I delight in trying new and different features each day, but you must leave room for those who either cannot or choose not to enjoy the latest fad the Internet has to offer. Going back to the first lesson, remember that the most important feature of your web page should not be these glitzy graphics and eye-popping features but your content; a lack of this important element will soon find your visitors elsewhere. Either offer an alternative for those catching up to you, or wait until they do.