The Ultimate Guide to Achieving Success with Automated PDF Testing

PDFs have been a standard part of the modern digital landscape for decades. As such, they are increasingly being used to store and transmit essential documents, images, and other information.

Let's say you've developed a web application that relies on PDFs. To ensure that your users have the best experience, you must ensure your PDFs are appropriately tested. This is where automated PDF testing comes in.

Automated PDF testing allows you to quickly test your PDF files for accuracy, consistency, and reliability.

So how can you get started with automated PDF testing?

This article will discuss the benefits of automated PDF testing, how to set up your system for success, and the key steps you need to take to carry out successful tests. Let's get started!

What is PDF Testing

PDF testing verifies that your PDFs are accurate, consistent, and reliable. This is done by manually reviewing the contents of a PDF file to ensure it meets specific standards.

Automated PDF testing aims to simplify this process by automating the manual steps involved in the review. Automating your tests can help run them quickly, accurately, and reliably. The results of automated PDF tests can be used to identify any issues with the PDF file in question quickly.

Why Automate Your PDF Testing?

Before automated testing, organizations leaned on manual PDF testing, which can be time-consuming and tedious.

In addition to eliminating manual steps, automated tests provide detailed and accurate results much less prone to human error than manual tests.

Other benefits of automating your PDF tests include the following:

Reduce Testing Time

Can you imagine testing several PDF files manually? Automated testing significantly reduces the time spent on PDF testing, allowing organizations to focus their resources on other tasks.

Reduce Costs

By reducing manual labor, organizations can save significant money on testing costs. Automation also eliminates potential errors caused by manual reviews and helps reduce overall costs associated with printing and distributing PDFs.

Improved Accuracy

Automated tests offer accuracy and consistency in results, ensuring that your PDFs are consistently up to standards. This benefits any organization looking to provide a high-quality experience to its users.

Test with Multiple Data Sets

Multiple data sets mean more accurate results, and automated tests allow you to create different data sets for your PDF testing quickly. This helps organizations save time and resources when creating multiple versions of their PDFs.

Test for Formatting/Styling Consistency

Testing for consistency in formatting and styling is critical when creating PDFs. Automated tests allow you to quickly identify any issues with the appearance of your documents, ensuring that your PDFs look professional and uniform.

Validate Data Accuracy in PDFs

Data accuracy is essential for any PDF. Automated tests can quickly identify any issues with the data in your PDFs, helping to ensure that your documents are accurate and up-to-date.

Create Reusable Test Cases

Reusable test cases allow organizations to create tests in a standard format and quickly apply them across multiple PDFs. This helps improve the overall speed and accuracy of your testing process.

Monitor for Regression Issues

Automated tests can detect regression issues in your PDFs by running the same tests repeatedly. This helps in identifying any unexpected changes to your documents, allowing organizations to address any problems quickly.

3 Elements to Consider for PDF Testing

With PDF testing, there are three main elements to consider:

  • PDF Validity:

PDF validity must be tested to ensure that the document can be successfully opened, read, and parsed by a PDF viewer.

  • PDF Layout:

The layout and formatting of your PDF must be tested to ensure that it looks professional and is easy to read.

  • PDF Data:

Data accuracy must be tested to ensure that the content of the PDF is correct and up-to-date.

5 Steps to Application of Visual AI in Testing PDF

Visual AI is a powerful tool for testing and validating PDF documents. Here are five steps to implementing Visual AI as part of your automated PDF testing process:

1. Collect Test Data

The first step to using Visual AI is to collect test data. This data should consist of various PDF documents representing the types of files you plan to test.

2. Create Visual AI Models

Once you have collected the test data, you can create visual AI models to classify and detect common patterns in your PDF files. These models are then used to validate the accuracy and consistency of your documents.

3. Train Visual AI Models

To ensure that your models are accurate, they must be trained using sample PDFs. This process helps the system learn how to classify and detect various patterns in your documents, such as font size, layout, and data accuracy.

4. Run Tests with an Automated PDF Testing Framework

Once your models are trained, you can use an automated PDF testing framework to run tests on your documents quickly. This helps to ensure that your documents meet the desired standards and are free of errors.

5. Analyze Results and Iterate

Once the tests have been run, you can analyze the results and identify any areas for improvement. Iterating on your models further helps optimize your automated PDF testing process, ensuring that your documents are consistently up to standards.

Setting Up Your System for Success

To get the most out of your automated PDF testing, it is essential to set up a system to help you carry out successful tests. This includes selecting the right tools, setting up a process for tracking progress, and establishing standards for PDFs.


Selecting the right tools for automated PDF testing is critical. Various tools are available, so you must focus on choosing the right one for you.


Creating a process for tracking progress and setting up standards helps ensure that organizations can carry out successful tests in an efficient manner. This includes establishing metrics for measuring success, setting milestones, and tracking progress.


Establishing standards for PDFs helps ensure that any tested PDFs meets the required specifications. This includes setting up metrics to measure PDFs' accuracy, consistency, and reliability.

Tools like Preflight can help ensure that your PDFs meet the required standards.

Head to the next section and see a step-by-step PDF testing process with Preflight to understand better how PDF testing works!

PDF Testing Scenario with Preflight

PDF testing with Preflight looks like a piece of cake to anyone irrespective of his/her level of coding skills because there is not even a little bit of coding involved in the process. So, let’s see how it happens.

As you already know that Preflight is a simple browser extension, you do not need to specifically download any external app for your tests. To test your PDF files, just proceed with these simple steps;

  • Turn on the Preflight browser extension by clicking on "Start Test"
  • Then download the PDF file that you want to download
  • Preflight will automatically detect that a PDF file is downloaded
  • Click on the "PDF" button on the test widget and it will show the name of the downloaded PDF file
  • Click on the file name and the file will open in a new test window
  • Drag and drop the checkpoint flags to set visual assertions for better results
  • Click on "Finish Test"
  • After confirming to finish the test, save the test by clicking on "Save Test"
  • Setting up the test is complete. Now it will run normally on a virtual machine and you will be able to see screenshots in real time

So, you can clearly see how easy it is to test PDF files using Preflight. And, such an amazing testing experience is waiting for you as soon as you get started.