Graceful Degradation

Building an application for modern browsers while ensuring it remains functional in older browsers

modern internet browser features, without sacrificing accessibility in older browsers.

For example, rounded corners on elements can be achieved with simple CSS rules in modern browsers, and simply not shown in older browsers. A website which ‘gracefully degrades’ may not appear the same in older browsers, but will typically retain core functionality and usability.

Care should be taken that the user experience is not be compromised. For example, telling users to upgrade their browser is not ‘graceful’.

The approach is associated and compared to progressive enhancement. Both approaches can be combined to offer the best support for a variety of browsers.