October 23, 2019 Last updated October 21st, 2019 60 Reads share

The Importance of Cross-Browser Testing for Your Business Web

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It is a well-known fact that all web browsers are not designed equally and this fact is not news for any web developer. Each browser display websites differently in other words in its own particular way, no matter if it is Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Safari, Opera or Microsoft Edge. Even visually, not all web browsers are the same, let alone how they work and display sites. Each browser provider has its own vision of how their creation should work, what should support and in what way to develop it.

This is why cross-browser testing seems to be a good idea. It will help you make sure that your site looks and works the same way in all web browsers. So what does cross-browser testing stand for, and what is the importance of it for your business or personal site? Read this article below and find the answers to all these questions.  

What does cross-browser testing stand for?

Any website consists of a great variety of components, and the way they are displayed is highly dependent on the browser itself. For example, let’s take JavaScript code in Internet Explorer and Google Chrome. It can happen that JavaScript can act totally in a different way in these two browsers. Or, for instance, if to talk about some design elements, it can happen that it may look bigger in Opera, but at the same time smaller in Safari. So the main purpose of cross-browser testing is to ensure all components of the site work smoothly and in accordance with the purpose of various Internet browsers.

Even though Chrome undoubtedly gained more popularity among users than other browsers on the market, it does not mean that you should customize your site only to it and neglect viewing your site through other browsers. According to the statistics, over 17% of users still prefer using Firefox, while over 5% of them still consider Internet Explorer to be the best choice among browsers, whereas 3% lean towards Safari and only 1% of users choose Opera. So if you choose only one browser and will customize your site to it, now we are talking about Google Chrome, you push away more than 26% of your website’s visitors and that is definitely not a good idea as pleasant user experience of your site is what every developer is longing to. In other words, cross-browser website testing is necessary to ensure that all web elements, as well as  JavaScript, Flash, AJAX requests, etc. work as expected in each individual Internet browser.

Why is cross-browser testing important?

Nowadays, cross-browser testing plays a more important role than before, as earlier this process was used only for the most difficult projects and gained more popularity as time went by.  As more and more websites appear day by day, the only way to stand out of the pack is to create a truly professional website. Let’s imagine a situation where your next client is using Internet Explorer? What should you do? Refuse this offer and lose the client because the site is not displayed in it? And with the appearance of responsive web design, maintaining cross-browser compatibility has become really difficult.

The same goes for the mobile version of the site. If before, web developers needed only to check how the website looks and works on desktop computers (Mac or PC), so now everything has changed a lot. Day by day more and more customers make purchases and order services using mobile devices, so it is important to make sure that the website works and displays correctly on these devices as well. But the problem is that there are so many different browsers for desktop computers, mobile devices and tablets on the market, as well as there,  are so many different devices, for instance, Androids, iPhones, Windows Phones, iPads, etc., and to test them all is physically impossible. And we are not taking into account thousands of dollars that you need to spend to buy all of these devices. But fortunately, today there are many services for cross-browser testing that can facilitate your work.

How to conduct cross-browser testing?

If you came to this point, then you already understand that cross-browser testing plays an important role in the web development process. However how exactly it should be performed? 

It seems that the easiest way to test a website in multiple browsers is to create a checklist of the components and run tests in each browser. If you are working on web projects of medium complexity, then this is a fairly simple process that should not take too much time and money. However, for large websites and applications, when a lot of people work on a project, this method is not suitable. In this case, you would need several dozen virtual machines, iPhones, Androids, iPads and Windows Phones, tablets, etc. Fortunately, there are other options. You can contact an external agency or use online services to conduct cross-browser testing on your own, for instance, Comparium, a rather simple service that offers developers a convenient way to check the design of their websites in different web browsers and operating systems. This is a great choice if you want to test your website and find out the degree of its adaptability. Make cross-browser testing as easy as it can be. 

Conclusion

So, let’s sum up, cross-browser testing is of utmost importance in modern web development. With its help, you can determine whether your site and all its components are displayed and working correctly, depending on the browser and operating system, as modern websites need cross-browser compatibility. So let’s focus on providing a positive viewing experience for most of your users.

Nadine Grant

Nadine Grant

Nadine is Marketing Specialist at Eltima Software, global software development company. She always tries to be in trend of news in the technology world. She likes to share news about software and personal experience with users and readers.

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