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Quality Assurance

Dec 06, 2023 18 min read

Vadym Morozov
Founder, Senior QA

How To Do Browser Compatibility Testing: An Expert View

Mastering browser compatibility testing is essential for any web application's success in a landscape brimming with diverse web browsers. This article offers a detailed exploration of how to conduct adequate testing across various platforms, emphasizing the significance of maintaining a consistent user experience. We unravel the complexities of ensuring that a website functions seamlessly, regardless of the browser, which is crucial for enhancing user engagement and safeguarding your brand's reputation. Join us as we provide actionable insights and step-by-step guidance on building and managing a QA team poised to deliver browser compatibility excellence.

How To Do Browser Compatibility Testing

Cross-browser compatibility is an important aspect of web development that aims to make your website or application accessible and flawless for users in any browser. When a website doesn't work correctly in a particular browser, it can have negative consequences: users will face some problems, abandon the site, and switch to competitors. The negative impact on business and brand reputation can be highly damaging. 

In this article, we will study all the nuances and features of browser compatibility testing, reveal its importance, and delve into how to do browser compatibility testing effectively. Let's start! 

What is Browser Compatibility Testing: All Features of Cross-browser Testing 

A vast variety of web browsers is on the market today, constantly expanding. From the big players like Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Microsoft Edge to lesser-known and exotic browsers, each has its characteristics and implementation of standards. You can view the rating of the most usable browsers for the last year. 

How can the development team be sure that all the functionality works correctly according to the specifications of every web browser? This is where browser compatibility testing comes in handy. 

Browser compatibility testing is a crucial part of regression testing for websites and web applications that encompasses both functional and non-functional testing (including design and usability) to ensure that all website features operate correctly across various browsers, such as Edge, Chrome, Safari, and others. 

Since each web browser has unique configurations and code interpretation features, browser compatibility testing guarantees that the website works the same and correctly in all browsers. 

This type of testing ensures that your website's various features and capabilities are accessible to users across different browsers, and assistance applications. The development of web technologies has led to the emergence of various tools and web browsers for rendering websites. However, due to differences in implementing these technologies, websites may look different in different browsers. That is why compatibility testing turns into a key stage to ensure a stable interaction with the user. 

Why is Browser Compatibility Testing Necessary?

On the way to the success of every web project, there is an important task: - to make it accessible and working correctly for every user, regardless of which browser he uses. Now, you will learn precisely how the implementation of browser compatibility testing can affect your product. 

  1. Avoid differences in design: It's important that your website or app looks the same across all browsers. Otherwise, users may encounter different interfaces, resulting in a poor user experience and negative impression. 
  2. Create a positive brand impression: Your website or app is the face of your brand in the online environment. Internet users have different browser preferences and expect the same high quality regardless of their browser. If your website or app works correctly on all popular browsers, it creates a positive impression of your brand and promotes user loyalty. 
  3. Minimization of potential losses: Errors and inconsistencies in work on different browsers can lead to loss of customers and as a result loss of profits. For example, if your online store does not perform its functions correctly on a certain browser, it can lead to a loss of customers and a drop in sales. 
  4. Increased competitiveness: In a highly competitive world with hundreds or thousands of similar websites and applications, working seamlessly across browsers can give you an edge. 
  5. Increasing audience: Users choose browsers based on their individual likes and needs. Browser compatibility testing helps ensure your product is accessible to the broadest possible audience. 

These factors demonstrate that browser compatibility testing is necessary to ensure the correct operation of your product. It stands as a strategic step to improve business efficiency and position your brand in the market. 

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When to Start Browser Compatibility Testing? 

When to start browser compatibility testing is an important aspect of web product development. The detection and correction of errors, as well as the overall user experience, depends on the timing of the launch of this type of testing. 

As soon as possible: The first approach is to start browser compatibility testing immediately. This option is especially relevant in development methodologies such as Agile, where a working product is brought to market quickly. Browser compatibility testing starts even when only one page is ready for testing. By testing it for compatibility, you can detect and correct errors in the early stages of development, which is advantageous from a cost-effective point of view. 

After the development is complete: In scenarios where a third party handles the development of a web application or website, such as in an outsourced project, user acceptance testing will mandatorily incorporate browser compatibility testing. An alternative approach is to initiate browser compatibility testing after the entire application's development is finished. This method aligns with sequential development processes like the Waterfall methodology, which is seldom employed in today's IT landscape. After the development, you can test the website in different browsers. Fixing bugs at this stage may be less time- and cost-efficient, but it still helps fix critical bugs before release. 

Post-release: The last option is to start browser compatibility testing after the application is released to end users. Although this is not the most optimal option, it is better than not testing the application. After the application is released, testing and bug fixes can be performed as part of application change requests. This is expensive and requires many application deployments, but helps improve the user experience. 

When exactly to start browser compatibility testing is a question answered by development teams, project managers, and business analysts. Depending on the development methodology and specific project requirements, one of the options may be chosen.  Additionally, understanding how to perform browser compatibility testing is a complex engineering process that requires professional skills and specialized software.

What to Test During Browser Compatibility Testing? 

Browser compatibility testing is a complex process that requires careful analysis of various aspects of your web application. During this process, it is crucial to consider technical details and features to ensure optimal performance and that the application works correctly in all web browsers. Here are the key aspects to consider: 

Basic Functions: Tests the operation of basic functions such as links, buttons, dialog boxes, and menus. Technical analysis includes guaranteeing that JavaScript events are handled correctly in all browsers and that AJAX requests work without crashing. 

Graphical User Interface (GUI): Technical evaluation of the application’s appearance in different browsers. It is important to confirm that the CSS styles are displayed correctly and that the placement of elements on the page looks correct.  

Interaction with the User: Technical verification of the application’s reaction to the user’s actions. It is important to ensure that keyboard and mouse events are handled quickly and without delay. Code optimization analysis is required to ensure a fast response. 

Performance: Measuring the speed of the application in different browsers, including loading pages and performing complex JavaScript operations. Technical analysis reveals possible areas where performance can be improved by optimizing the code. 

Technical analysis during browser compatibility testing helps to identify and fix problems at the code level, thus ensuring that your web application works stably and efficiently in all web browsers. 

The Main Types of Browser Compatibility Testing 

Browser compatibility website testing includes different types of tests, each aimed at identifying certain aspects of the functioning and display of a web application on different browsers and platforms. The main types of browser compatibility testing are: 

Exploratory testing 

Specificity: A QA engineer performs this type of testing manually to detect non-obvious errors and anomalies that may occur during user interaction with the website. 

Purpose: Study of the web application's response to unpredictable user actions and detection of vulnerabilities that may affect the site's correct operation. 

Significance: Exploratory testing helps developers understand how users interact with their product and how it responds to different actions. 

UI testing 

Specificity: This type of testing is aimed at checking the correctness of the display of the website in different browsers and operating systems. Also includes testing of CSS animations and JavaScript components. 

Purpose: To ensure the website has the same and correct appearance on all supported platforms. 

Significance: Visual testing helps identify issues such as broken design, incorrect element sizes, or displaying certain elements only on certain browsers.  

Functional testing 

Specificity: Functional tests are aimed at checking the correct operation of all functional elements of the web application in different browsers. 

Purpose: To ensure that all features of the web application work according to documented requirements and specifications. 

Significance: Functional testing ensures that users can use the website to perform the necessary operations without problems or errors. 

Each of these types of testing has its own importance and specific application. Conducting all three types of tests allows you to ensure the quality and stability of the web application on different platforms and ensure user satisfaction. 

Comparison of Manual and Automated Browser Compatibility Testing 

Browser compatibility testing is critical to ensure the correct and consistent operation of web applications on different browsers and devices. In this context, the two main testing methods are manual and automated. Each of these approaches has its advantages and limitations. In the following text, we will consider these aspects in more detail and provide recommendations for their use in practice, accompanied by a table for easy comparison. 

Manual Testing 

Manual browser compatibility testing involves a QA engineer interacting with a web application manually, testing its performance on different browsers and devices by running browser compatibility test scenarios. 


  • Appearance and Usability Evaluation: The ability to thoroughly evaluate the appearance and usability of a website for end users, identifying possible interface and design issues. 
  • Adaptation to Non-standard Situations: A QA engineer can perform testing in non-standard conditions, which will help detect non-obvious defects. 


  • Time and Resources: Manual testing can be time- and resource-intensive, especially on large projects where many combinations of browsers and devices need to be covered. 
  • Human Factors: Humans can make mistakes, and test results may not be entirely consistent. 

Automated Testing 

Automated browser compatibility testing includes the creation of software scripts (browser compatibility test scripts) that automatically test the web application on different browsers and devices. 


  • Speed and Efficiency: Automated tests run much faster, allowing for more efficient testing of large projects or regression tests.  
  • No Human Errors: Automated tests avoid errors due to careless execution of test scenarios.  
  • Reusability: Tests can be reused, saving time and effort with each new program release. 


  • Cost for Creating: Developing automated tests can be expensive, especially at the initial stage when autotests development may be totally impossible. 
  • Inability to detect non-standard defects: Automated tests operate according to written scenarios and cannot always detect less obvious problems or non-standard situations.  

Comparison Table 

It is important to understand that both methods have advantages and limitations. The choice between them depends on the specific needs of your project, the amount of resources, and testing requirements. We'll look at critical aspects of both methods, including their pros and cons, so that you can make an informed choice for your project. 


Manual Testing 

Automated Testing 

Assessment of Appearance and Usability 

Excellent (Subjective assessment and human intuition) 

Limited (Requires specific scripts) 


Lower Initial Cost (Human resources) 

Higher Initial Cost (Tools and setup), but can be more cost-efficient in the long run 

Checking Non-standard Situations 

Good (Human testers can adapt on the fly) 

Limited (Requires pre-programmed scenarios) 

Test Performance Speed 

Slower (Depends on human effort) 

Faster (Once set up, tests run quickly) 

Minimization of Human Factor Errors 

Prone to Errors (Humans can make mistakes) 

Reduced Errors (Automated processes are consistent) 

Detection of Non-obvious Defects 

Better (Humans can notice subtle issues) 

Poorer (Limited to programmed test cases) 

Integration with Continuous Integration (CI) Systems 

Not Applicable (Manual processes don't integrate) 

Excellent (Can be integrated to provide immediate feedback) 

Handling Large Test Scenarios with Big Data 

Inefficient (Scaling is limited by human resources) 

Excellent (Capable of handling complex and large data sets efficiently) 

Testing Algorithm 

To guarantee the best browser compatibility testing results, it is recommended to use a combination of both methods according to the following algorithm: 

Step 1: Project Scope Analysis  

The first step is to gather all the necessary information about your project. Assess the scope of your web application and the resources at your disposal. This initial analysis is crucial in determining which testing method to employ—manual or automated. It's important to note that full automation is unattainable; even in projects that heavily utilize automation, there is still a manual component. Additionally, it's widely recognized that the best practice is to create effective automated tests from manual tests, which ensures a comprehensive testing process. 

Remember: Mostly, browser compatibility testing is a component of ongoing regression testing, which can be resource-intensive for manual execution. Automation allows for much quicker regression testing with less resource expenditure. 

Step 2: Manual Testing for Appearance and Usability  

In the second step, perform manual testing to evaluate the design and user experience. Testers analyze the website on different browsers and devices, observing aesthetics, ease of use. 

This is the moment when such problems as unexpected shifts of design elements, display problems on different screen resolutions, and usability issues on certain devices become apparent, necessitating immediate attention to ensure a seamless user experience across all platforms and devices. 

Step 3: Automated Regression and Load Tests 

Create automated tests that will perform regression checks and load tests. Regression tests check whether new defects have appeared after changes have been made to the code. Load tests serve to determine the stability of the system under heavy load. 

Automated tests will help: 

  • Quickly identify problems during regression. 
  • Evaluate how the program behaves with a large number of users or requests.  

Step 4: Update of Test Scenarios  

It is critical to update both manual and automated tests as the program may change over time. To do this, review and update test scripts according to the latest application changes. 

Step 5: Collection and Analysis of Results 

After performing manual and automated tests, combine the results and analyze them. Fix the detected defects by working with the developers to fix the software code. Retest the problematic areas after the fix. 

This stage helps:    

  • Identify and correct problems that may occur in real-world use. 
  • Ensure high product quality before release. 

Step 6: Making a Decision Regarding Further Testing  

At the last stage, we analyze all the test results and determine which testing method should be used in the subsequent stages of the project. This decision must consider the project's scope, available resources, and changes in the program. 

It is important to remember that browser compatibility is not just a one-time task but an integral part of the regression testing of any web application, and it continues throughout the life cycle of the product. As such, while you should certainly focus on this aspect at this stage, it's crucial to continuously refine your approach and methods to address the ever-evolving landscape of web browsers and devices. This process ensures that the application remains functional and accessible to all users, regardless of their choice of technology. 

This algorithm will help ensure high-quality and efficient testing of how to test website browser compatibility, ensuring your web application works reliably on different browsers. 

Top Tools for Browser Сompatibility Testing

Below, we look at some of the most popular tools that help testers ensure their web applications display and work correctly across browsers and platforms.


LambdaTest is a popular cloud-based browser compatibility testing tool. It allows testers to ensure their applications work effectively on all desktop and mobile browsers. LambdaTest can perform responsive website testing and even test private or local websites. Thanks to a scalable cloud grid, the tool allows you to run automated Selenium scripts. 


CrossBrowserTesting is a compatibility testing tool that allows you to run manual, visual, and Selenium tests on multiple mobile and desktop browsers. You can also test local applications. This tool provides complete access to developer tools and browser extensions, making it easy to debug the interface. 


BrowserStack is a robust browser and mobile app testing service that provides instant access to over 1,200 browser versions on different devices. With no configuration required, you can test internal websites, saving time. The user interface is also very user-friendly. 


Experitest allows you to interact with applications in real -time to debug them. This tool can efficiently run hundreds of parallel tests, saving testers time. Experitest allows you to test websites and web applications on over a thousand mobile and desktop browser versions. 


BrowserShots allows you to test websites on any operating system and browser. This tool is easy to use and allows you to check browser compatibility. 


Browserling allows you to test browser compatibility in real-time. This tool runs real browsers on servers, making it very reliable. It also allows you to capture, share, and save screenshots of web pages in all browsers. 


Functionize makes it easy to test websites in all major browsers. This tool also helps reduce visual testing errors and provides performance, mobile, and visual testing. 

Sauce Labs 

Sauce Labs offers continuous real-time testing and test automation with Selenium. This tool helps improve quality, increase test coverage, and reduce time to market. 


TestingBot allows you to run browser compatibility tests with over 1,500 browser versions. This tool also allows you to take screenshots of web pages and test responsive layouts. 


BrowseEmAll is a browser compatibility testing tool that supports all browsers. It allows testers to identify and fix browser-related issues and perform live regression testing. 

These tools help ensure that your web application works on any browser and platform, reducing the number of errors and increasing the quality of the product. Choosing the right tool depends on your needs and testing tasks. 


In this article, you learned the basics of browser compatibility and when and why it is necessary. You also learned about the benefits of manual and automated browser compatibility testing and a list of the best tools for browser compatibility testing. Additionally, you discovered how to test cross browser compatibility to ensure that websites function correctly across different web browsers. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced tester, understanding how to test browser compatibility is essential. We hope that the acquired knowledge will be helpful to you! 

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What are some practical tips for effective browser compatibility testing?

Planning, thorough testing of different versions of browsers, and utilizing cloud services for cross-platform testing are essential strategies for effective browser compatibility testing. Moreover, most cloud services offer capabilities for cross-platform testing, allowing you to evaluate how web applications perform across various devices and operating systems, further ensuring a consistent user experience.  

What are the main problems that can arise during browser compatibility testing?

Issues can include differences in rendering, CSS, JavaScript, or HTML5 support and different browser speeds. 

Which browsers should be included in the list for browser compatibility testing?

Your choice should be based on your target audience analysis (SEO specialists create a list of the most relevant browsers for your web application). Still, including popular browsers such as Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge is standard practice. 

How do you correctly issue a bug report during browser compatibility testing?

When filing a bug report, it's imperative for the tester to first provide a full description of the environment, including the browser version and other relevant parameters. This level of detail is crucial for developers to replicate the issue effectively. The tester should also strive to localize the bug as precisely as possible and provide a clear, detailed list of steps for reproducing the bug. If possible, visual evidence of the bug, such as screenshots or videos, should be provided to further assist the developers in identifying and resolving the issue efficiently. 

Why choose Luxe Quality for your browser compatibility testing needs?

Choosing Luxe Quality for browser compatibility testing ensures access to seasoned experts and advanced tools that provide comprehensive coverage across all browsers and devices. Our attention to detail and customized testing strategies deliver meticulous results, complemented by cost-effective solutions and timely delivery. We prioritize clear communication, providing detailed reports and visual evidence to help developers quickly address issues, guaranteeing a seamless user experience for your web application.