What's the ideal site width ?.

by alan9187 45 replies
Hi everyone....

What's the best/ideal width of a web site so it can be viewed on most if not all computers. I've looked around and found all different widths of websites,

I imagine that it depends on the size of the viewers monitor and was woundering if there is some html code that will resize the site accoring to the montor size when it's being looked at .
#website design #ideal #site #web #width
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  • Profile picture of the author locpicker
    There really is not one anymore I think. The browsers can resize most sites to still look decent. You can try this yourself by making your window different sizes and see what it looks like.

    Yes you can get code to do different things to the look of your website. The new devices use various methods to make websites look presentable.
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  • Profile picture of the author Webster Logan
    So there is no ready made code or software for that?
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  • Profile picture of the author locpicker
    There is all kinds of code available. Most of it is free in the form of snippets.

    Depends on what you want to do and how many patforms you want to support.
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  • Profile picture of the author SDStudio
    Previously all are used 780px width and nowadays all are using 1000px width. Height is not a problem, that based on your content on home or inner page. My suggestion is 1000x650px for without scrolling website.

    Cheers,
    SD
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  • Profile picture of the author actofrage
    when I create a website I usually go for a width of about 900-1000px, but like locpicker says it's not really relevant anymore, what with all these iPads and smartphones. These devices usually have pretty smart browsers which automatically downsize any content to fit on screen.

    Making your site's width flexible is pretty important for the different sized screens (10" netbooks for example).

    Don't worry too much about it though, I think if you stick to a maximum of about 900 or 1000px you'll be okay
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  • Profile picture of the author locpicker
    You are right. Things have changed. There are still coding standards in effect but most people do not follow them anymore. W3C has a long list of things you can go by but if you are coding to sell you will soon find that the customer is who will tell you what they want. And the in thing now is full page width designs the will expand when new content is added.

    If you have a lot of content 650px is not very much room.
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  • Profile picture of the author HorseStall
    These days you can use % so that the content scales to the size of the persons screen.
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  • I have mine set at a fixed width of 1100... But It all depends
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  • Profile picture of the author Patrick
    980-1000 pixels...the standard width of 80% of websites I guess since most people now use resolution of 1024px width and higher...
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  • Profile picture of the author kjhosein
    Alan - here's what I did when I was redesigning my site and asked the same question:

    I jumped into my Google Analytics stats and looked at the resolutions my viewers were already using. Even though there were still people using screens that were only 600-640px wide, it was a very small percentage, so I decided it was ok not to support them. Essentially you can't please everyone.

    I wouldn't go down the road of dynamically resizing based on user agent testing, because remember that a viewer can resize their browser to be much smaller than their full monitor resolution actually is, and that code will become a bit of a headache to maintain.

    HTH!
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    • Profile picture of the author alan9187
      Thankx for the feedback ALL,

      Buy the looks of it i will stick to the 900 to 1000. I do not wory about hight as all my sites are expandable as content is aded by the user who can put as much or as little on one page as they choose.
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      • Profile picture of the author alan9187
        By the way,

        I don't use Wordpress, but i was looking at doing some templates , do's hight and width matter when designing for wordpress, looking at some wordpress templates it seems there is no restictions.
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  • Profile picture of the author donhx
    As others have said, it has to do with the screen resolution of the "average" user. You don't want to have anyone scroll sideways. I keep all of my sites at 960 pixels wide max for that reason.

    Length makes a small difference, but you should have some concerns about that. Some people have pages so long they scroll all the way down to China. My view is that they should be no more than 8-10 printed pages. Two reasons for that: people should not have to scroll forever, it is better to link. Also, shorter pages generally load faster, and that's always a good thing.
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  • Profile picture of the author SEOJJ
    I make all my sites 900 pixels wide, some people still use 1024 for their monitors so I try to keep it below that.
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  • Profile picture of the author jack jastin
    Originally Posted by alan9187 View Post

    Hi everyone....

    What's the best/ideal width of a web site so it can be viewed on most if not all computers. I've looked around and found all different widths of websites,

    I imagine that it depends on the size of the viewers monitor and was woundering if there is some html code that will resize the site accoring to the montor size when it's being looked at .

    There is not any hard and fast rule for size limit to design any website but make sure it should not be extending the size without any reason.
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  • Profile picture of the author Webster Logan
    So softwares/ready made codes are different for each browser?
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    • Profile picture of the author Deema
      The current standard website width is 960px. A few years ago it was recommended to not exceed 790px.
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  • Profile picture of the author Peter Gehr
    I find it always pays to look at your site with as many browsers as you have available. Additionally, it's a good idea to check your sites on another computer as well.

    Although IE is still popular, Firefox and Chrome are widely used, and certain aspects of your site may look a little different from browser to browser, i.e. if there's something wrong within your formatting.
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  • Profile picture of the author gmscreative
    **********
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  • Profile picture of the author yourmobisite
    Hello.. I think the width of web site is depends on it design and and you can adjust it as your requirement.
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    • Profile picture of the author Webster Logan
      So there is no hard and fast rule when it comes to a size of the website?
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  • Profile picture of the author alan9187
    thanks all, real help
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  • Profile picture of the author adianadiadi
    I found the ideal width of the main content of the web page is around 700 pixels.
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  • Profile picture of the author jaialeksandra
    The first consideration for a fixed-width layout, is the width of the user's screen. If you have collected these statistics from your current website visitors, then you should cater to your current visitor base. If you do not have this information, or this is your first website, then you will need to use some more general statistics. If you search the web you will find many different sites that have collected browser statistics.
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  • Profile picture of the author RyanRobinson
    All of the top web designers design around 960 Grid System

    960 Grid System

    960px width with a 10px gutter on each side.
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  • Profile picture of the author joepeter
    Great discussions about site width.



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  • Profile picture of the author lordhyde
    900-1000px width... recommended, 960px

    but it all depends in your market... if you target old people, you might think better in work with an 780px widht and BIG font size.

    if you target designers... you might go with 1400 or even more, since most of them use at least a 19" widescreen.

    I recommend you check your server logs and analytics to find the most common used browser and resolution. that will give you great advice about what to use.
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  • Profile picture of the author jimbob
    You also need to consider your content - a sales letter with a width if 980-1000px is generally going to be harder to read than one set at, for example, 600px.

    Most people these days have at least a 1024x768 resolution, which is why most well-trafficked sites settle on a width of somewhere between 950 and 1000px:

    Facebook = 981px
    Youtube = 970px
    Yahoo = 972px
    BBC = 974px

    All different, but all within 11px of one another and, crucially, no horizontal scrollbar at a resolution of 1024x768.

    But as mentioned by others, modern browsers are excellent at showing the content regardless. Still, opt for something around 980px and you'll be fine.
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  • Profile picture of the author adianadiadi
    why not mentioning the percent width using style sheets?
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    • Profile picture of the author xtrapunch
      Originally Posted by adianadiadi View Post

      why not mentioning the percent width using style sheets?
      If you use %, the website will look very different on two screen resolutions. A very wide content area is not ideal for websites that require people to read. It's like having entire newspaper printed as one column.
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      • Profile picture of the author adianadiadi
        Originally Posted by xtrapunch View Post

        If you use %, the website will look very different on two screen resolutions. A very wide content area is not ideal for websites that require people to read. It's like having entire newspaper printed as one column.
        Ok! What about using 60 to 70 percent? I use 85 percent on my site.
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        • Profile picture of the author alan9187
          Thanx again ALL for such great input on this subject.

          Looks like 950 will be the width for me, thought 1000 at first till more feedback came, I think 950 is around the right width for the type of sites that i will be making and will probably be the best width for the customers content input on the site that they will be purchasing .

          Having said that ( spanner in the works here ), Most of the sites if not all that i will make will be minisites with expanding page length so the customer can add as much content to a page as they wish. There will be a content area of around 600 to 700pxls wide centerd on the site, is this ok or should the content area be same as the site width with padding ?.
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  • Profile picture of the author alan9187
    Thanks again all for the replys.

    Is there somewhere or a software that i can put on my pc so that i can preview my sites in all brousers quickly ?. I use windows pc but would like to see how the sites look in brousers for the mac .
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  • Profile picture of the author Evan-M
    if going with a fixed width, go with 1015px, that pretty much covers 99% of users.

    the reason is, there are still allot of users using 1024 width as there res. and the scroller on the side is 9 px wide. so anything under 1015 will fit there screen, and that is the smallest common res used. the old standard was for 800width screens , but those res are far and few between now.
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  • Profile picture of the author Tautvydas
    960px is ideal width, witch renders well in nearly all screen sizes.
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  • Profile picture of the author adianadiadi
    Why to bother about specifying the width. Just leave it. The browser will set it. Any comment?
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    • Profile picture of the author Mkj
      You could use max-width.

      CSS max-width property

      This would enable screens below the max-width you set to adjust to the screen size and would stop the need for the user to scroll sideways to see the content. Though it can cause menus and so on to look odd should they be set right for a max-width of 960px say.
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    • Profile picture of the author Evan-M
      Originally Posted by adianadiadi View Post

      Why to bother about specifying the width. Just leave it. The browser will set it. Any comment?
      with a floating design its much harder to have things layout the way you want...in some layouts it works well, but most it looks sloppy unless it was designed for a floating width
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  • Profile picture of the author Squeenix
    I love 960GS.
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  • Profile picture of the author oknoorap
    960 px is ideal for any desktop devices. for mobile devices you should use % than px, for css.
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    • Profile picture of the author ronc0011
      I always use a liquid layout using "%"s and floats, and then set a min-width value so the floats don't start stacking. This way the page always fills the browser window even if the user has a wide monitor. I usually set a min-width of about 960 or so. I also usually set a width value for "p" tags so the text doesn't run too wide on a wide monitor.

      I am running dual monitors so I can stretch my browser really wide for testing this approach. Works very good. Also because I have dual monitors I tend to have 20 things open at once and my browser is always in floating mode i.e. never maximized. I'm always dragging it from one screen to the other. It's never at full size.

      All that being said I am currently working with a lot of Wordpress sites and all that stuff is pre configured and I'm not going to start trying to re-code WP themes.
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      • Profile picture of the author adianadiadi
        Originally Posted by ronc0011 View Post

        I always use a liquid layout using "%"s and floats, and then set a min-width value so the floats don't start stacking. This way the page always fills the browser window even if the user has a wide monitor. I usually set a min-width of about 960 or so. I also usually set a width value for "p" tags so the text doesn't run too wide on a wide monitor.

        I am running dual monitors so I can stretch my browser really wide for testing this approach. Works very good. Also because I have dual monitors I tend to have 20 things open at once and my browser is always in floating mode i.e. never maximized. I'm always dragging it from one screen to the other. It's never at full size.

        All that being said I am currently working with a lot of Wordpress sites and all that stuff is pre configured and I'm not going to start trying to re-code WP themes.
        Setting width value for p tags is new to me. How is it possible. Is it possible? OK I will try.
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        • Profile picture of the author ronc0011
          Yes, you can max-width values for "p" tags.
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