We live in an attention economy. Users search for information on the internet, go to your website and if it does not load within 2 seconds, they drop-off. I’m not joking, here are some harsh truths about user behavior you may want to know-
- 57% of users will not recommend a poorly designed website.
- It takes a user 0.05 seconds to form an opinion about your website, 94% of which is purely design related.
So, how do you ensure your website caters to the impatient user? Through Website Testing. It may seem like the obvious answer but only 43% of brands plan on investing on their website performance.
Enough with numbers, let’s get down to why YOU really need to master website testing- 1) websites need to be mobile-friendly, 2) content and navigation are key to ensuring the user stays on your website, 3) CTAs and offers need to be visible for increasing sales and conversion rates, 4) Enhancing user experience is the biggest investment you can make towards long-term revenue generation etc.
This article will help you learn all about website testing and how you can master the art of creating effective website designs. Let’s get started, shall we?
What is Website Testing?
The fundamental function of website testing is to quickly identify any issues with your online application or website before going live. Web testing is intended to examine every area of the functionality of the web application, including searching for issues with usability, compatibility, security, and overall performance.
Web testing is an essential component of building any web application or website since you don't want to invest the time, money, and other resources just to have it encounter problems as soon as it is released. That has happened before, and it isn't pleasant.
For example, Amazon have faced website crashes on their Amazon Prime Day in 2018.
Types of Website Testing?
1) Functionality Testing
It is used to make sure that all of the features of a web application operate without any problems.
Functional testing includes checking the functionality of links in a web application, cookies, forms on all pages, verifying HTML or CSS, and security testing of databases.
A web application's complete functionality is tested to make sure it is created in accordance with the needs of the business. Functional testing includes integrating all of the software's modules and performing necessary field-level validations to provide the right error messages.
2) Usability Testing
From the perspective of the end user, usability testing is crucial for a web application. Web applications that are easier to use and more efficient will captivate more customers. A web application's user interface should primarily adhere to specific standards. When creating a web application, all worldwide conventions and online standards should be adhered to. Usability testing takes into account crucial elements like clear navigation, a site map, the removal of grammatical errors, and the reduction of cluttered material.
3) Interface Testing
Web server, application server, and database server interfaces are among a web application's most crucial interfaces. The interconnection of each individual component within the web application is ensured by web UI testing. A web application's interface testing aids in determining whether the interaction between these servers is carried out correctly.
4) Cross-Browser Compatibility Testing
Testing for cross-browser compatibility One of the most important things you should think about while evaluating a web application is compatibility testing. Through compatibility testing, you can make sure that users of various browsers, operating systems, and devices can access your online application.
Most operating systems, including Windows, Mac, and Linux, as well as browsers, including Safari, Chrome, Internet Explorer, Firefox, etc., should all function well with your web application.
5) Performance Testing
Performance testing will enable you to assess your web application's responsiveness to different loads. Stress testing, load testing, and scalability testing are frequently included in performance testing. An intense load is used to test a web application's performance. Load testing is done to ascertain how a web application will behave under average and peak loads. Stress testing identifies the web applications' breaking point at high demands that exceed regular loads.
6) Security Testing
Web applications that store sensitive consumer data, such as banking information, must undergo extensive security testing. Unauthorized access to secure pages is prevented thanks to security testing. It ensures that restricted files aren't downloaded without the proper authorization. A web application's security testing makes sure that private data stored there is not made available to unauthorized people.
7) Database Testing
The majority of websites are powered by a system's back end. Therefore, checking the database is essential for a website. To check the reliability, correctness, and consistency of the wide variety of data kept on the website's back end, database testing is done.
Advantages of Website Testing
There are several reasons why you should be conducting website testing, here are a few that you should definitely consider-
- Website testing is crucial and required after designing a feature since without a comprehensive testing phase in place, otherwise you cannot guarantee a bug-free product.
- Website testing aids in identifying and reporting product flaws. There is a probability that bugs will be discovered by the end user if a product is not thoroughly tested. If the customer is unhappy with the finished product, he or she will hesitate before returning to your website, impacting your conversion rates.
- With the increase in online activity, consumers are mostly online for shopping or information. If you don't thoroughly test the web application you risk losing out on consumers who could eventually convert into brand loyalists. Compromising on product quality ultimately results in compromising the brand's reputation.
- Bug-free websites draw in new customers and help you build a better and more positive relationship with your consumers.
Challenges Faced While Conducting Website Tests
1) Firewall interplay
You'll come into a lot of situations when a firewall or port can block a website because of problems with security certificates. To prevent such problems, you must test your application on many firewalls.
2) Validation of Web Services
To exchange data across various applications or systems, modern web applications heavily rely on web service layers like XML/SOAP or REST/JSON. As a result, testing all of these applications has enormous potential. You must select the appropriate tool from your web testing tools to test these web services.
3) Maintenance of Consistency Across Several Browsers
Most users favour dependable, adaptable, and engaging websites. If a user encounters any irregularity while browsing through your website, they may drop-off or worse, never return. Your developer must keep track of the scalability and interactivity of your website across multiple hardware configurations and browsers.
4) Solving Performance Problems
Along with a user-friendly experience, customers expect your website to load quickly. One of the main objectives of website testing is also to achieve this. Testers must pay close attention to performance testing with interoperability, extended application, and integration difficulties to overcome this obstacle.
5) Security Dangers
In the era we live in, digitization is the standard. Cyberattacks are occurring at an alarming rate. You must control how security testing is done in order to prevent data breaches and information loss. When you wish to prevent security difficulties with DDoS and cyber attacks, this can be useful.
How to Effectively Conduct a Website Test?
Website testing can be done in one of two ways: manually or automatically. Given the variety of variables you must take into account while testing your website, it is time-consuming to do so manually. The most effective way to conduct a website test is use an AI based Platform that will help you automatically identify problem areas.
Here is a checklist to ensure you cover all your bases during a website test-
1)Verify cross-browser compatibility
2) Check for responsiveness
3) Testing for functionality
4) Examine any broken links
5) Guarantee security
6) Test payment gateways
7) Testing of cookies
If you want to conduct Website Testing, before or post launch, try Qatalyst. You can even conduct Live Website tests with its AI-enabled user research platform. It is simple, intuitive and completely DIY. Here is how Qatalyst ensures you get actionable insights and helps you build your website design the right way-
- Test Usability and User Journey
- Track Goal Completions and Development
- Improve User Experience by tracking drop-offs, alternate paths, misclicks, bounce rates etc.
- Use Predictive Eye Tracking to get instant product insights
- Conduct a variety of tests like Tree Tests, Card Sorting, 5-second Tests, Prototype Tests, Wireframe Testing etc.
Should You Conduct a Website Test?
The simple answer is Yes. Your website needs to continually improve to stay secure, usable and relevant. Providing a seamless website experience to your users is key to improving conversion rates, brand reputation and brand loyalists.