Creating a website or web app to put out into the world is an intense experience. It involves hundreds of hours of hard work, fastidious attention to detail, and an almost obsessive level of dedication. If you’ve ever worked on a website before, you’ll be familiar with the feeling of worry about how users are going to perceive and receive the finished product.
When you work so hard on something, it’s natural that you want it to succeed. The success of a website depends, of course, on a myriad of different factors, but rigorous testing (including cross browser testing) is a big piece of the puzzle. Testing is something where a lot of mistakes can be and often are made, which can have disastrous results for your site.
While it’s understandable you’d want to get your brainchild out into the world as soon as possible, you should never launch an app or site before it’s been tested and tested again. Performing cross browser compatibility tests is an integral part of this process. If you’d like to learn more about what this entails and why it’s so very important, read on now.
What Is Cross Browser Testing?
A cross browser compatibility test is merely the validation of a website or app across different web browsers. The goal is to find any bugs or anomalies that would lead to an inferior experience for users based on their browser. As a web developer, it’s your job to ensure that the site you build works not only on your default browser, but also on other browsers your users could conceivably be using.
While you can’t be expected to test on every browser ever created, there are a handful of browsers that make up the most commonly used across the globe. Part of the cross browser testing process involves choosing which ones you’ll be testing your site across.
Cross browser testing doesn’t have to be a lengthy or drawn-out process. In fact, by using tools that facilitate automated browser testing, it’s actually quite simple.
Why Is It Important?
If you don’t test your site on different browsers, you can’t be sure it’s going to work as expected on them. It could look or even behave differently, and sometimes in a negative way.
Sometimes different browsers can have bugs, or implement features in different ways. As well as this, some browsers have different levels of support for technology features than others. Some browsers and devices simply have constraints that you’ll need to find workarounds for.
The purpose of cross browser testing is to improve the user experience and usability of your website or app as much as you can. As you’re no doubt aware, creating a stellar user experience is a huge aspect of web development. The success of a website or app hinges largely on the UX it delivers.
How Cross Browser Testing Improves Your Site’s UX?
So, how exactly does cross browser testing work to improve the user experience your site provides? To answer this question, you need to put your user at the forefront of your mind. What are the different types of people that may be using your website and the different ways they might use it?
One huge aspect of UX is accessibility. You want your site to be accessible to everyone, right? But different people interact with websites in different ways, and this is important to take into account.
There are people with disabilities who use the internet with the aid of assistive technologies like screen readers or enlarged text. Some people don’t use a mouse, using only the keyboard instead. Failing to take these users into account is, in essence, dismissing the experience of a huge group of people.
There are 61 million adults in the US alone who live with disabilities. Many of these will be using assistive technologies, so it only makes sense you’d want to cater to such a large sub-section of society.
Optimizing For Mobile
There’s also another sizeable group you also need to consider. We’re talking, of course, about mobile users. In recent years, the way people access websites has changed.
While in the past, desktops were the primary source of website traffic, the tables have now turned, with mobiles being the dominant device. In fact, recent figures have shown that in the US, 63% of all online traffic comes from smartphones and tablet devices.
The good news is that cross browser testing can help you make sure your website or web application is performing well across different devices. You may be thinking that this is taken care of during the responsive testing phase but this isn’t totally true.
Responsive testing deals with rendering your website for different viewports offered by different devices. On the other hand, cross browser testing will help your site to be ready for different browsers prepared for different mobile operating systems.
One of the hallmarks of quality UX is a level of consistency. You want your site or app and all of its features to look and behave the same, no matter where or how it’s being viewed.
If you fail to perform cross browser tests, you may find out down the line that your login page or checkout, for example, look completely different on different browsers. For customers who use multiple different browsers to access your site, this can cause confusion and frustration. Two things you definitely don’t want your site’s users to be feeling.
Cross Browser Testing Made Easy
Cross browser testing is a hugely important part of the software development process. If you want to make sure you’re putting out a quality product, you need it to be properly tested. Our browser automation testing platform can help.
We want you to be able to put out a product you can have full confidence and pride in. Start a free trial of our platform today to see for yourself how we can help you do just that.