December 19, 2011
Did you ever think peeking at your analytics is the first thing you should do before starting a new design? It is, and if you haven’t looked at the analytics for some of your sites recently, you’d be surprised what you see, particularly in the screen resolution area.
A few years ago, resolutions were limited to mostly the ones you can probably recite from memory. Today, there’s no way you could guess or assume you know the resolutions people are using to view your site. One site I built a few years ago had over 450 different resolutions visit with a month!
What To Look For
I like to look for a couple of things when starting a design.
- Low-end desktops. I’ve been designing for 1024×768 wide for years now and I’d like to go beyond that. All the sites that impress me visually seem to be going wider and wider. If a low percentage of users (<5%) are at 1024 or less, that helps inform the decision to blow up the 960 grid or not.
- Mobile Visitors. Understanding if users are visiting with mobile devices will help inform the decision to launch with a mobile site. If they are, then you’ve got some solid data to backup the decision to push for mobile design.
Know Your Users
The more you know about your users, the better the experience you can create for them. Tracking their screen resoltuions with analytics is an easy and painless way to get some more info before putting your pixels in place.