Current Date :July 21, 2024

How to Test the Graphical User Interface: a Comprehensive Guide

Most people communicate with software applications on a regular basis, whether it’s on a tablet, smartphone, or computer. And, because of the fast growth in mobile technology, the web and app development industry is more competitive than ever before. This is why common software programs are visually appealing, easy to use, and durable. The only way to accomplish this, aside from efficient development, is with thorough software testing.

The primary feature of any software program is a graphical user interface (GUI) that enables seamless interaction. Users have expectations and need to quickly navigate around an app to efficiently obtain the result. Without software testing & QA, there’s more risk in not fitting user standards, which will eventually affect client satisfaction and profit.

This GUI testing guide is a complete resource for obtaining an in-depth understanding of the importance and implementation of software testing for UI. 

GUI Fundamentals

The Graphical User Interface (GUI) is the display layer of a software program, website, or mobile app. Unlike the earlier, text-based Command Line Interface, the GUI is a modern graphic illustration of the underlying functionality that delivers it simpler for general users to communicate with software applications.

The backend functionality handles the business logic, methods, data and transactions, and performs calculations before presenting the results to the user by the frontend (the GUI).

Typically, the user interface (UI) contains all user features and functions available in the program. This in itself highlights the use and value of GUI testing.

UI Elements

User interface elements are appended components that enable the user to interact with a program and GUI testing is all about verifying these elements.

The list of possible components is long but the common ones comprise:

  • Text Boxes to input data
  • Check Boxes for multiple options
  • Radio Buttons to pick one option
  • Command Buttons for actions
  • Social media sharing icons

Additionally, knowing the behavior and various states of UI elements is important, for example:

  • Disabled / Enabled
  • Unfilled / Filled
  • Masked / Unmasked
  • Option Defaults
  • Before / After Mouse Hover 

Key UI Criteria

There’s a lot more material to a graphical user interface than seeming pretty with colorful buttons.

The GUI and its actionable functionality is the user experience so great design and planning are essential to meeting the scope for predefined conditions:

  • Stylesheets and aesthetics
  • Browser or operating system compatibility
  • Data validation and data integrity
  • Easy navigation and usability
  • Implement different modes based on security
  • Execute user actions and shortcut keys

Users see and feel the application’s design. In situations where the interface makes the user uncomfortable, like holding low-quality images and text, or complex menu structures, they will waste no time in exiting the program. If it’s a mobile app, it will apparently be uninstalled within seconds.

Testing Methodologies

Whether software testing & QA is outsourced or managed in-house, it’s a crucial part of any production method.

Software testing methodologies refer to utilizing different functional and non-functional testing approaches to confirm that the software program adheres to certain standards and that all actions can be obtained and completed without errors.

Some examples of these methodologies include:

  • User Acceptance Testing
  • Functional Testing
  • Regression Testing
  • Unit Testing
  • Performance Testing
  • GUI Testing

GUI Testing Tools

Picking the correct testing automation tool will decide the success or failure of its deployment. Points to keep in mind when evaluating automation tools:

  • It should be able to support and automate the technologies employed to develop the software application
  • The capacity to write and update tests, and deploy to test environments should be uncomplicated and painless for the testing team.
  • Use a tool that gives technical support and keeps up to date with the latest technologies, web browsers, and operating systems.
  • Make use of trial periods to completely review the various  GUI tools, such as Ranorex, Selenium, QTP, and Cucumber.

Checklists and Compliance

Testing the design and UI component functionality is multi-faceted and needs good judgment, attentiveness to detail, and determined scopes.

A QA engineer should regard all aspects of the frontend interface that incorporate color schemes,  fonts, content, UI components, alignment, hyperlinks, and expected user behavior.

Below are noteworthy features of user interface testing.

UI Components

  • Review positioning, size, width, length, and alignment of all UI elements.
  • Test acceptance of data entry in areas for text, numbers, special and invalid characters.
  • Perform the software functionality with the UI.
  • Check Error reporting and correct message presentation without spelling mistakes.
  • Apply good quality images and clear text.
  • Test in different screen resolutions and review the screen/page resizing.
  • Test page scrollbars and the nature and behavior of UI controls.

Behavior and Usability

The following list comprises common expectations for program behavior, presentation, and usability.

  • The application opens with a double-click.
  • Describe behavior for running various instances of the application.
  • Program information represents the application name, version, and other relevant detail.
  • Window title bars and naming conventions are constant.
  • The user has the choice to confirm closing the application and receive a warning for any unsaved work.
  • Dynamic elements such as progress bars or hourglass icons show if processes require time to load or finish.
  • The online help is obtained through the Help menu and F1 key.
  • Tab navigation is allowed with the order running left to right, top to bottom.
  • Mandatory fields are highlighted with validation.
  • Window commands have a corresponding shortcut key.

Value of Testing

Today, the majority of businesses and small businesses use software programs to maintain, operate, and execute business processes to efficiently promote saleable products and services and to accomplish business goals. So, software stability and usability are business-critical.

And, with web and mobile applications being quickly understood by consumers, the demand is growing for quicker, smarter, and more graphical apps. Therefore, robust and user-friendly software is the answer to any successful application. 

Also Read: The Absolute Necessity Of UX Testing: Best Practices, Tools & Methodology

Need to implement GUI testing? Think no more! TestUnity provides the testing services on-demand, serves with projects of any scale, and is ready to start with a few days’ advance notice. Choose to team up with a QA services provider like TestUnity. Our team of testing experts specializes in QA and has years of experience implementing tests with different testing software. Get in touch with a TestUnity expert today.


Testunity is a SaaS-based technology platform driven by a vast community of testers & QAs spread around the world, powered by technology & testing experts to create the dedicated testing hub. Which is capable of providing almost all kind of testing services for almost all the platforms exists in software word.

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