We’re almost ready to launch the new Detailed Image site. The planned launch day is Saturday, April 20th. We’re putting the finishing touches on everything and then later this week we’ll start testing pretty heavily. It’s nice having an entire team of people to test. Last year prior to launching the revamped LockerPulse we found quite a few little bugs by having our employees use it for a while. An e-commerce site is a little tougher to dogfood than a sports news app. But given the amounts of money exchanging hands on any given transaction, it’s also much more important to release without major bugs.
It’s interesting how much browser testing has changed since I first started developing for the web. We ran a browser / OS report for the past six months and Safari on iOS is #1 in terms of visits. Responsive design isn’t just necessary so that it looks nice when people occasionally use the site on their phones or tablets, it’s becoming people’s primary way of shopping online, and thus the mobile views of the responsive design are just as important as the large screen views. I plan on doing a few posts about this after the launch diving into our stats a bit more.
We always try to plan these launches out, but inevitably it’s always a mad rush to the finish line. In some ways I enjoy the chaos – to some degree I thrive in it – but it’s unsustainable. I’ve been putting off anything and everything in life and work that I can until after the 20th. That gets tiring and stressful after a while. Plus when you’re 90% done with something there’s this nagging feeling that it should be released ASAP so your customers and your business can benefit from it. In the midst of the development, my wife and I also bought a house, which we’ll be closing on in early May. So the second the site is up and stable I’ll have to switch gears and dial back my workload a bit…which is probably a good thing for me.
I’ve got some posts I’m really excited to write after the launch. Until then, I’ll be spending my time driving myself mad trying to make a modern HTML5 responsive design work in IE8 and – gasp – IE7! IE7 is still about 1.7% of our visitors, which for a retail business is too large to ignore. Thankfully html5shiv got us a good part of the way there without any work.