Why is Cross-Browser Functional Testing Business Critical?

The scalability and depth of your service offerings can be measured at length with the virtual interface of your business. Website or a web based application is absolutely critical today to make the right impact and to reach out effectively to the target group. Even more critical is ensuring its cross-browser compatibility. The responsiveness of the web application across browsers will determine its effectiveness on the target group. Considering every browser is made differently, cross-browser functional testing becomes inevitable.

Functional Testing helps test the features and functionality of the website/application across various conditions and scenarios. It evaluates the application’s functioning even under failures and any possible discrepancies. In the current digital transformation scenario, it is important to build the website with robust functional testing, as it will ensure customer satisfaction.

What does Cross browser testing entail?

Whether it is IE, Chrome, Firefox, every browser is made differently and has different dimensions. Cross browser testing is the process of testing applications methodically across browsers. This helps evaluate its performance and functionality to ensure that all the features are operational across various browsers.
Cross browser testing is generally automated as it has to happen at the same time and tests are run simultaneously. Manually the process could be lengthy and time consuming, as there are multiple tests. So, automation plays a key role in Cross browser testing, making the process error free and quicker.
With the kind of uncertainty and the competing market scenario, it is crucial to reach faster to the market and at the same time ensure quality. Automation enables you to ensure the same.

Why does it make business sense?

Let’s consider a financial application or a banking application. It is important to ensure that the banking application works effectively across all the browsers and gives required results. At the same time connects with other third party applications to give the desired experience.

So, it makes absolute business sense to consider cross browser testing to ensure the functionality of the website/application. Customer satisfaction is at the core of every business venture, so it is necessary to ensure it with effective testing.

Benefits of conducting Cross browser testing

As mentioned, every browser is developed differently, so any particular web application that might function as expected on one browser might not necessarily function in the same way on another browser. So, it is important to understand the compatibility issues and rectify them to bring together an integrated view of the web application.
Especially when the website is designed for official or business purposes cross browser testing becomes essential. The reason being, there could be numerous client components that would give varied results when they are run on different web browsers. Another aspect is testing the compatibility across various devices, such as, tablets, personal computers, and smartphones.

Necessarily, in the current scenario functional testing of web browsers must extend to mobile web browsers as well. Now that the reasons for cross browser functional testing are clear, it is important to understand the best ways to conduct it.

Let’s look at some best practices. Do let us know your views on the same as well.

Develop a checklist
The approach towards cross browser testing can vary with the objectives of the project. The best way is to create a checklist of the various functions that have to be checked and tested. This helps in taking a planned approach towards cross browser testing and also makes the process faster. It will also be effective if you put together the expected outcome while putting together the checklist. There are multiple tools that can make the testing process faster.

Choosing the right tool
This takes us to the next point of choosing the right tool. It is important to keep the objectives in mind while choosing the tool. There are multiple tools available in the market to test cross browser compatibility and functioning. But it is important to choose a tool that fits your purpose. For instance, tools such as BrowserStack, Browsera, and sauceLABS can run tests across multiple browsers and can do it through multiple iterations.

Combination of Manual testing
Nevertheless, there is a flipside to the overall tools and automation process as well. The tools make the process easier and faster, but at the same time it can only perform as much as it is built for.
So, the best approach is to involve manual efforts along with automation. It helps identify flaws that the automation tool might not be able to do effectively. The best and comprehensive approach is to involve the best of both – automation and manual efforts.

Choose the testing grounds effectively
You need to identify the top browsers where you want to test the application. An effective approach is to analyse the Google traffic charts to identify the top browsers for testing. After that you can conduct a detailed analysis of the Application under Test (AUT) to figure out the testing zones. The best way is to test the application completely on one browser and then only test important chunks of the application on other browsers.

In Conclusion
It is important to understand that there are major variations even between different versions of the same browser. This makes cross browser functional testing inevitable for business-critical applications. So, it is critical to test even on the older versions to assess the results and ensure that the outcome is as expected across all browsers.
Digital Transformation and Digital Technologies are taking the world online, and any compatibility issue can ruin the over business objective.

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