With the growth of a variety of devices and web browsers, it become a very important task to make your software application or website support a variety of web browsers. browser testing is the process of testing your software application against a range of web browsers. browser testing is defined as the concept that makes sure that a specific website is supported in different types of Internet browsers. It ensures that all the features and functionalities of the website are working in all browsers and there should not be any kind of inconsistency while working on the browser.
For example, consider an online service provider company. It uses a huge amount of money and time on rough testing phases, and still, it is unable to provide a seamless, fast, and interactive experience to its users. This bad user experience may lead to shifting of the users to another competitive website. That’s why browser testing is given so much importance in the whole software development process.
In this article, you will see what browser testing is and what are some of the best tips and practices that should be followed by the testing team to make your browser testing successful.
What is browser testing?
browser testing refers to the practice of verifying that web applications work as expected across many different combinations of web browsers, operating systems, and devices. As we know, different web browsers have different support features for the website components. Hence browser testing aims to increase this compatibility score by testing the features for different types of web browsers using any testing tools and frameworks.
Now, let us briefly see the various types of browser testing.
Types of browser testing
browser testing is majorly divided into two types, which are as follows:
Backward Compatibility Test
A backward compatibility test is defined as the type of test used to check whether the newer version of the application is compatible and supported with the older version. Apart from that, backward compatibility testing ensures that the new updated version of the application will function well with the data, configurations, and all the other elements of the older version of that particular web application. The compatibility should be error-free and work seamlessly like the previous version.
Forward Compatibility Test
A forward compatibility test is defined as the type of test used to check whether the web application or website will be compatible and supported with the future version of that software. It checks if the working and functionality will remain consistent and seamless as it is now. This type of testing is also called “upward compatibility testing” and “future compatibility testing.”
LambdaTest is an AI-powered test orchestration and execution platform, empowering users to conduct both manual and automated assessments for web and mobile applications, spanning over 3000 diverse browser types, operating systems, and combinations of real devices.
7 browser testing Tips and Best Practices
Here are some of the best practices and key tips on browser testing:
● Build a Browser Matrix
Making a browser matrix is defined as the process of making a list that consists of various web browsers and their versions for which we will test our project. Because it is not possible that all your applications will be compatible with all web browsers and their versions. There are many reasons behind it and one of them is that many functions and CSS properties are not supported in all the older browser versions. But we try to make our website and web application as compatible as we can by performing browser testing.
So, to do this, we need to build a matrix list in which we will decide which browser is important for that particular web application or website. This will help us to target more and more users in the future. Develop, for instance, in accordance with your target demographic of Chrome-using marketers. Because the general public upgrades their browsers frequently, your browser matrix should be updated as well. You can organize the elements you can utilize on your website using a browser matrix.
● Encapsulate Code In Framework
One of the best practices to start a web development is to select the framework wisely according to your web project. Framework helps a lot to the testing team as it provides many features and most of these frameworks are free to use you do not need to pay any charge. Any framework that you use during the browser testing process, is already optimized to find any error or bug. Also, during the website development, these frameworks help t make responsive and supported elements to add to your web application or website.
One of the good examples of a website development framework is Bootstrap. It provides many features that reduce the hardcore programming of the developer. You just need to inherit the class and elements and it will automatically get scaled according to the various types of devices. As an additional point, frameworks also help you in SEO optimizations but those are big frameworks such as Django. Take into account that working with an SEO expert can better help you understand those optimizations.
● Test on Real Devices
The ultimate goal of browser testing is to make your website application compatible with a huge number of web browsers. Using real devices makes sure that the functions and features of the website support all platforms. There are many tools that provide different emulators and virtual machines that help the developer test their website exactly like many types of real devices.
These virtual machines provide a real device environment just like a different system on your existing system such as Android and Safari browser online. As we know, testing a web browser across older versions and newer versions as well as increases the efficiency of the website. Using emulators and virtual machines provides these features to test the website at a low cost and with much efficiency.
● Conduct Code Validation
Code validation is the concept of checking your codes whether it is according to the W3C standards or not. The W3C’s standard is defined as the protocols and technologies that is used to build the website such that the content would be available to as wide a population of the world as possible. A website developer is advised to follow these standard rules.
If not followed, it may lead to your website application winding down. A good code for browser testing that is according to W3C standards helps to make your website more compatible, SEO friendly, and many more features.
● Skip Unnecessary Components
Sometimes, the web developer increases the complexity of their website by adding unnecessary components to it without any end goal. It should be avoided to make the browser testing process easy and efficient. The best practice involves keeping simple and fewer components on the landing page of the website. Because unnecessary components on the landing page of a website have been the most affecting enemy for browser testing.
So, it is advised to keep your landing page simple and it will help to pass the browser testing easily. As we know the components of a website live in a synchronized environment, any small fault in aligning these components may lead to eye-disturbing visuals on the landing page and will degrade the user experience. You can find many online creative ideas over the internet to make an effective landing page for a website. Hence, always code only the necessary components to reduce cross-browser compatibility issues.
● Check Support for Your CSS Properties
As we know, different web browsers have their own way of handling the CSS properties. It may be possible that if a specific CSS property is compatible with a web browser let’s say ‘X’ and the same CSS property will not be compatible with the web browser ‘Y’. For example, the Google Chrome browser supports the backdrop-filter property but it is not the same in the case of Firefox.
While creating the website, it may be possible that the developer forgets to end a specific part of the code with the closing tag. All browsers have their own way of tackling this kind of minor mistake. For example, Chrome browser will auto-correct these issues without any effect on the website. But browsers like Internet Explorer will not rectify this and will lead to the website’s misbehavior. That specific part of the code will not be reflected on the website. So, it is a good practice to always check for your CSS property compatibility to improve the browser testing outcome.
● Test Throughout the Development Process
As a good cross-browser tester, it is advised to test your website until the whole development process ends. The testing should be done at a regular frequency to detect any issues and rectify them at that specific time only. If not done at a regular frequency, it will pile up many errors and bugs and at the last stage, it will be come very complex task to do such a huge amount of rectification on your website.
browser testing is the process of testing a website to increase its compatibility with various types of web browsers. There are a lot of rules and regulations that need to be followed while performing browser testing but in this article, you have seen some of the best and commonly followed practices that make your website more and more compatible with numerous web browsers.