Testing Web Pages
Testing a web page is essential to constructing a successful website. Organizations use this process to develop an informative, accessible, and user-friendly website. To maintain this successful website, website testing is run by a web developer. Website testing is a software practice where the developer tests a website or application for potential bugs. A web-based system must be checked out from top to bottom before users go live.
Website testing is broken down into six steps. Step one is "Functionality testing," step two is "Usability testing," step three is "interface testing," step four is "compatibility testing," step five is "Performance testing," and finally, Security testing. All of this information can be traced back to two articles I found on the topic, "How to test a website" and "A Complete Web Application Testing Guide: How To Test A Website" both do a great job breaking down steps and standard procedures a web developer will take to complete such tasks.
Step I — Functionality Testing
The first step in testing a website is "Functionality testing" In this step, the tester tests all of the links on the web page, from Database connection to the forms used for submitting and getting user information. This step is essential as it breaks down exactly what the system does. Everyday things checked during this process include Outbound links, Internal links. There are no links leading to the same page, links used to send emails to site admins, and no broken links exist. Making sure all of the links work correctly is crucial during this step. It is also essential to check whether the forms for interactive communication with your customers are working correctly during this step. Next in this step is to test whether Cookies/small files with stored information work on the site. Finally, the last item to check during this step is whether there are any HTML or CSS validation errors and verify that the site is available for search engines.
Step II — Usability Testing
The second step in website testing is "Usability testing" This process is all about human-computer interaction; testing the system's characteristics are measured, and weaknesses are identified for correction. Mainly this step consists of whether the overall content being viewed is easy to understand and is in the right place. During this step, the tester will test whether the website's navigation has a good workflow and is easy to understand. The tester will check whether buttons, shapes, and fields are convenient for use and, finally, access to the main menu from all pages. Another thing testers will study during this step is whether there are any grammar or spelling mistakes in the code. Following this, they will check whether the image size is correctly placed.
Step III — UI/ User Input Testing
The third step in website testing is UI, better known as User interface testing. This step is essential as users first see the layout, design, and graphics when entering a website. During this step, the website tester must ensure the website's graphic elements meet the user's specifications, which means the design, layout, colors, fonts, captions, and all of the visual parts of the website. During this step, the tester will also check for translation accuracy and review the length of interface elements' names.
A bigger picture of UI Testing
- Data type errors: The test checks that only valid data can be entered for specific fields such as dates, currency, etc.
- Field widths: The test checks that specific text fields do not allow users to place inputs over a particular limit of characters.
- Navigational elements: The test checks that all page navigational buttons work and redirects users to the right page.
- Progress bars: The test checks that when displaying pages or screens that take time to load completely, a progress bar appears to let the user know the page is loading.
- Type-ahead: If the UI uses drop-down lists, type-ahead is required. In a drop-down menu with multiple options, the user should find the right one by typing the first letter. Making the user go through a long list constitutes a negative user experience.
- Table scrolling: If the website has data tables, and if the table extends into a second page, the user should scroll through all the data while keeping the headers visible and in place.
- Error Logging: This test checks that in case of a system error, the software records error details to a log file to be reviewed later.
- Menu Items: The test checks that the software displays only the menu available in its particular geographical location (if that is applicable).
- Working shortcuts: If the software supports shortcuts, this test validates that each functions as expected across multiple browsers, platforms, and devices.
Step IV — Compatibility (Configuration)
The fourth step in website testing is Compatibility (Configuration) testing. During this step, the tester tests your website with each supported software and hardware configuration, which means OS configuration like Windows, IOS/Mac OS, Linux, Android, etc. Next, they test for Browser configurations like google, yahoo, bing, etc. Then finally, they try for database configuration, such as Oracle, DB2, MySQL, MSSQL Server, etc. Also, during this step, the tester will test for printing compatibility. This step is for whether the page graphics page alignment and the same fonts can be printed out correctly, ensuring that everything can fit on the page for printing.
Cross-platform testing: evaluating the work of your site in different OS (both desktop and mobile): Windows, iOS/Mac OS, Linux, Android, BlackBerry, etc.
Cross-browser testing: websites in different browser configurations: Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Opera, etc.
Database testing: ensures the correct work of your site in different database configurations: Oracle, DB2, MySql, MSSQL Server, Sybase.
Step V — Performance Testing
The fifth step in website testing is "Performance testing." In this step, the testing is explicitly aimed at whether the system performs responsiveness and stability under certain load conditions. Websites in this stage must be able to withstand high load speeds. The methods used during this step include. Stress testing pushes the site beyond its limits. Load testing, testing for the behavior of increasing workloads. Stability testing, whether the website can work within or just above the acceptable period. Volume testing, Concurrency testing, and finally, Endurance testing. These steps are crucial to whether the website can run according to the user's expectations.
- Testing site behavior at or beyond the limits of its anticipated workload (Stress testing).
- Testing site behavior at increasing workload (Load testing).
- We are testing the ability to work within or above the acceptable period (Stability testing).
- Testing website performance by increasing the data volume in the database (Volume testing).
- Testing website performance when multiple users log in (Concurrency testing).
- You are testing the behavior of your site when the additional workload is given continuously (Endurance testing).
- Page load speed testing.
Final Step- Security Testing
The final step of website testing is "Security testing." This last test is the most important to developing a web page. So many companies fail this step and, due to this, have had millions of people's personal information leaked. This step is performed to ensure the website is safe and secure from Malware and malicious attacks on the system. During this step, testers will run a Penetration test simulating a malicious source attack to evaluate the level of security on the site. Another kind of testing used is Vulnerability testing. This step allows an individual tester to assess the total involved risks within the website. Testing for SSL security functions, ensuring sessions are terminated after prolonged user inactivity, and Checking to ensure their use of captchas is working correctly, ensuring whether restricted files are not downloadable without appropriate access. The biggest takeaway from this step is ensuring there is no login ability while entering the incorrect pin. Again, this step is so crucial that it must be done correctly.
- Ensure that unauthorized access to secure pages is not possible.
- Verify sessions are automatically killed after prolonged user inactivity.
- Test SSL security functions.
- All attempts at breaking, reporting errors, etc., should be logged and stored in a separate file for further analysis.
- Check the captcha work using automatic scripts.
- Ensure restricted files are only downloadable with appropriate access.
- Ensure there is no login ability while entering the wrong password or username.
The Importance of Testing Websites
With so many websites on the rise, the significance and importance of website testing are crucial to developing a successful website. From testing the Functionality to the security of a website, a tester must take their time and work out all the bugs and errors before sending the website to the public. When developing a website, designing a list like the above as a template for what you need to test is an integral part of any web development practice. Knowing what you're doing with a blueprint or outline is the best way to work smart and straightforwardly. With the rise of mobile-friendly applications and websites, the steps listed above have also been proven helpful in creating a successful website in the mobile space.