In today’s world, we can choose between several types of web browsers to access web applications hosted on the internet as per our preferences in usability, readability, accessibility, performance, etc. Hence, a website designer always keeps in mind that the web page seamlessly works efficiently across different platforms, devices, browsers, etc. The QA tester also ensures that the webpage is tested across all these aspects.
Considering that automation Testing tools like TestProject, BrowserStack help QA test teams execute tests efficiently, they should opt for these advanced technical tools instead of performing tests manually. Automation, after all, helps optimize the use of time, people, financial resources, etc.
This article helps aide how you can plan, design, execute and eventually reap benefits from the cross-browser testing results.
Role of a test coverage matrix – prioritize tests.
Cross-browser testing enables automation tools to allow you to use the same code to be tested across different browsers, along with parallel, remote execution support. Tools like CrossBrowserTesting, BrowserStack, etc., are cross browser-specific test automation tools that help you achieve this goal. There are tools like TestProject which allow integration of such specialized cross-browser testing tools like BrowserStack as well.
It is just not the browser list that you need to consider while building the checklist. You need to list more into the list:
- List the browsers to be tested. For example, Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Apple Safari, Microsoft Internet Explorer, Microsoft Edge, Opera, Vivaldi, etc.
- Specify the browser version number for each of the browsers.
- List the operating systems that the browser will be launched on – Will it be hosted on Windows? Linux? iOS?
- List the device names that the browser will be launched on – Will it be hosted on the desktop? Or a mobile device? Or a tablet?
Based on this list, building a cross-browser testing matrix will help you plan your tests – you can prioritize the combinations as per the customer/ business requirements.
Choice of automation test tool – does it support cross-browser testing?
Next, look out for a robust automation tool with cross-browser testing capability. The best part about such tools is that you will not need to install or maintain an internal lab of VMs, devices, or even emulators for this purpose! Some tools allow the integration of 3rd party cross browser-specific automation test tools to plug into them. Tools like these enable users to choose from more than 1200+ on-demand real mobile devices, operating systems.
Cross-browser testing enabled tools to allow you to choose among the several browsers available to test. Headless browser testing is also functional in many of these tools. There are following features that are helpful if present in the tool –
- Headless browser testing capability lets you run the test in the background.
- Remote execution of tests.
- Parallel execution – If enabled, it will help you save time.
Lots of combinations to test? Do you plan to test them all?
The primary concern is how to plan 100% coverage of the tests with all the browsers in a limited time? Can manual testing be relied on?
In the world of data science, we are aware that data is vital to help generate insights. What if there are lots of test data combinations to be considered?
For example, if your automation test suite comprises of –
- 200 tests,
- 6 browsers,
- 3 operating systems.
- 5 device types.
With this, we would have a total number of tests as:
200 X 6 X 3 X 5 = 18,000 tests!
This is a whopping number of tests. How would you incorporate testing all these combinations in this in a limited time? You could rely on combinatorial test design, Pairwise Testing, or All Pairs testing in such cases. Many tools help you with this.
This method magically helps you smartly come up with an optimized set of a lower count of tests – all without having to compromise with the test coverage. You could read about the mathematical algorithm associated with Orthogonal Arrays built by Taguchi to understand more about the power of combinatorial test design.
Visual test analytics to help you decipher real-time insights
With visual test analytics features in the test automation tool, you can derive insights and trends about the tested web application. It will help you measure the product quality across several dimensions. For example, if you notice that the graph says that the Android-Chrome tests seem to fail a lot, you could zero in on the reason, by analyzing further.
The graphs provide essential indicators of the web application’s health by measuring successful vs failed tests using visual methods. It is much easier deriving meaning out of a picture instead of going through a considerable number of test results. One such example of a graph is as follows:
We are lucky to be in an era where we benefit from test automation tools being available for cross-browser testing. If it wasn’t for them, it would have been overwhelming to test all the planned test cases in all the browsers in hand. Also, thanks to the tools, you can run the same code across all the browsers.
With the advancements in AI being implemented in many of the tools, they are getting even better. Choose an automation tool to help you achieve all the goals concerning maximum coverage in this regard, and at the same time to be able to support testing robustly and efficiently.