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Best Practice

Mobile Responsive Testing

Ensuring your website or web application looks and works seamlessly on various devices is essential. Mobile responsiveness testing is the key to achieving this. Let’s dive into the basics and explore some essential test cases and tools for effective testing.

Why Mobile Responsive Testing Matters

Mobile-friendly websites are a must. Did you know that more than 75% of users prefer mobile-friendly sites? However, a staggering 96% have encountered websites not optimised for mobile devices, leading to user dissatisfaction.(Source).  This is where mobile responsive testing comes in.

What to look out for

Content Display Ensure that the website’s content fits the screen and appears correctly on different devices and screen sizes.

Media Functionality Verify that media elements like videos and audio are accessible and work properly on all devices.

Font Consistency Check that font colour, size, and style remain consistent and readable on various screens.

Link Functionality Confirm that all links work correctly and redirect users to the right pages.

Page Loading Speed Verify that the web page doesn’t take too much time to load, ensuring a smooth user experience.

Image Compatibility Check that different types of images (e.g., .png, .gif, .jpg) are displayed as expected. Sometimes it’s best to remove imagery from mobile views to ensure there is a smooth user experience.

Navigation Ensure that navigating between web pages doesn’t distort the content.

Form Usability Confirm that all forms and input fields are easy to use and function as expected.

Performance Check that the website loads quickly and doesn’t suffer from performance issues.


How to check the responsiveness using your desktop

When you use the “right click inspect” method in web browsers, you’re primarily using the browser’s developer tools to inspect and manipulate the elements of a web page. While this method is incredibly useful for debugging and examining page structure, it’s not the most efficient way to check for mobile responsiveness. However, you can still use it to get a rough idea of how a website appears on different devices.

Here’s how you can check mobile responsiveness using the “right click inspect” method:

  1.  Right-click on the web page element you want to inspect and select “Inspect” or “Inspect Element” from the context menu. Alternatively, you can press Ctrl+Shift+I (or Cmd+Option+I on Mac) to open developer tools directly.
  2. Toggle Device Mode, in most modern browsers (like Chrome and Firefox), there’s a device icon at the top left corner of the developer tools panel. Click on it or press Ctrl+Shift+M (or Cmd+Option+M on Mac) to toggle device mode.
  3. In device mode, you can select different devices from the dropdown menu. Common devices like iPhones, iPads, and various Android phones and tablets are available. You can also customise the screen dimensions.
  4. With the chosen device, you’ll see how the website appears on that specific device’s screen size. You can interact with the page and see how it responds. You’ll also notice if elements are rearranged, font sizes change, or if there are any issues with content fitting the screen.
  5.  Most devices have both portrait and landscape orientations. You can simulate this by rotating the virtual device to see how the website adapts to different screen orientations.

While this method gives you a good visual representation of how your website looks on different devices, it’s important to note that it doesn’t replicate the full mobile experience. Actual device testing on physical smartphones and tablets is still necessary to catch issues that might not be apparent in the simulated view.

For comprehensive mobile responsive testing, consider using dedicated responsive design testing tools or testing on real mobile devices alongside browser developer tools, such as:

Emulators and Simulators: These tools simulate different devices and operating systems, allowing you to test without physical devices.

Automated Responsiveness Testing Tools: These tools automate testing across multiple devices, saving time and effort.

Live Interactive Testing Tools: With these tools, you can interact with your website on real devices remotely, ensuring a user’s perspective.

Mobile responsive testing is crucial to ensure your website or application caters to a diverse audience. By following these simple test cases and utilising the right tools, you can enhance your website’s compatibility, accessibility, and user satisfaction, ultimately driving your business’s success in the mobile era.