Test Browser Compatibility

Kyle Van Deusen
June 29, 2020

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Ensure that your website works on the most popular web browsers.

We all have our favorite browser… but the users of our new website could be using just about any browser on the market. Each browser handles things like CSS and scripts a little bit differently, so it’s important that you test your website across multiple browsers to spot any issues before you go live.

The Google Chrome browser accounts for about 62% of the browser market, making it the most important one to test.

After Chrome (in terms of popularity) you have Safari, Firefox, Samsung Internet (mobile), Opera, and Microsoft Edge. Any other browsers take up less than 1% of market share and tend to be less important to test on.

Testing browser compatibility manually

The most effective (and least expensive!) way to test your browser compatibility is to simply do it manually. It’s a good idea to have a copy of all the major browsers installed on your computer for testing purposes.

You don’t have to get extremely scientific to perform a decent test. Simply visit the site just like a user would, click on buttons, test popups, examine hover effects and animations, and most importantly check any submission forms.

It’s also important to look to ensure your colors and fonts are rendering properly.

Software Testing Help provides as a cross-browser testing checklist that may come in handy if you are diving in a little bit deeper:

1) CSS validation
2) HTML or XHTML validation
3) Page validations with and without JavaScript enabled
4) Ajax and JQeury functionality
5) Font size validation
6) Page layout in different resolutions
7) All images and alignment
8 ) Header and footer sections
9) Page content alignment to center, LHS or RHS
10) Page styles
11) Date formats
12) Special characters with HTML character encoding
13) Page zoom-in and zoom-out functionality

In most cases, testing manually is sufficient for a small business website. However, if you have a mission-critical website that needs to be put through every test, you can pay for automated testing services, which we’ll talk about next.

Automated browser testing

There are many products on the market that will perform browser compatibility tests for you. BrowserStack offers this service for $29/mo, while Lambdatest has a limited free plan and paid plans starting at just $15/mo.

With automated testing services you’ll be able to cover much more ground quickly— Giving you the ability to not only test different browsers, but different computers and combinations as well.

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