Playwright vs. Selenium | QA Automation Tools for Web Scraping in 2024
Test Automation
Silpa Sasidharan November 20, 2023

Do you know Playwright and Selenium are built primarily as quality assurance (QA) automation testing tools?

Indeed, Playwright and Selenium are two essential  QA automation (QA) tools for web scraping.

Selenium and Playwright can be used across different web browsers for testing. Therefore, both tools are used for web scraping and automation.

Well, would you prefer to use Selenium or Playwright for automation testing?

Worry not; we will help you choose which one you should select. Let us walk through a few critical aspects of automation testing tools.

Web Scraping- A Brief Introduction

We have already discussed in another blog that web scraping is a technique for collecting data from websites.

Typically, websites usually do not let users copy data for personal use. It is not easy to copy and paste the data now and again.

However, you can use web scraping to collect data automatically with the help of web scraping software. These web scraping software programs load and gather data from websites based on user needs. They can be customized or configured to work in all conditions.

What is Playwright?

It is an open-source Node.js library for browser automation and is commonly used for web scraping. It is a new tool that offers full browser support and is compatible with Java, C#,  Python, and NodeJS.  

Also, it offers some remarkable debugging features. While running, you can debug scripts, making it useful for local development. 

Why is Playwright Used for Web Scraping?

You can set up Playwright easily and support different browsers. Further, it is used in common programming languages such as Python and Java.

One of the key features of Playwright is that it evolves quickly. Playwright comes with many features that are useful for browser automation and also has extensive community support.

Top of all, its compatibility with Puppeteer makes it a strong competitor for Selenium.

Read more: Which Are The Top 5 Automation Testing Tools To Watch In 2024

What is Selenium?

Selenium has been one of the most common open-source QA automation tools in recent years. It helps test web applications across several platforms and multiple browsers.

Also, Selenium is used along with Python programming language in web scraping.

Why is Selenium Used for Web Scraping?

Selenium helps you interact with the user interface elements and supports browser engines, operating systems, and almost all common programming languages.

Moreover, it imitates user actions in any browser type. It is one of the reasons why Selenium has become the best option for QA automation for web scraping. Also, you can use any language.

Selenium vs. Playwright: Which QA Automation Tool Should You Select?

QA Automation: Playwright vs. Selenium

What factors should you consider while selecting between Playwright and Selenium? 

From the above, we can infer that both tools have unique purposes. Therefore, consider the following:

  • Web scraping requirements 
  • Skills of your development team in using these QA automation tools.
  • Browser and language support
  • Practicality
  • Page Automation
  • Integration with testing frameworks
  • Browser automation 
  • Maintenance and updates

Why Should You Use Playwright Rather Than Selenium?

  • When you have massive web scraping jobs in hand.
  • If you look for consistent behavior across every browser
  • While you collect information from dynamic web pages
  • It is ideal for isolated browsing sessions

Is Selenium Suitable for All Situations?

  • It would be best if you want to use a QA automation tool for almost all languages
  • If you need QA automation for multiple browsers
  • If you think extensive community support and resources are a must.

Advantages of Playwright

A few of the critical benefits of Playwright are as follows:

  • It provides cross-browser support for web automation and testing. 
  • You get the auto-waiting feature, which waits for elements before executing actions.
  • Supports screen recordings and screenshots during tests, making it easy to identify any failures
  • Also, it features headless and headed modes while running QA automation tests
  • Run Javascript code directly in the web page context with the help of an Application Programming Interface (API)
  • Tester can simulate logins and control user sessions during interactions

Advantages of Selenium

  • Testers run test scripts parallelly on different browsers and devices, reducing test execution time.
  • Supports cross-browser testing to check if a website or web application works smoothly across all browsers. 
  • Works with several programming languages and helps automate browser interactions. 
  • Also, it supports headless and headed modes and helps testers run the browsers with/without displaying the graphical user interface.

Read more: Test Automation Services | 7 Best Practices You Should Know

How do Playwright and Selenium Contribute to the Success of Web Scraping Projects in 2024? 

Web scraping is a critical element for data extraction in various industries. As a result, Playwright and Selenium will remain vital web automation tools ideal for data scraping from websites in 2024.

Here are a few ways these tools drive the success of web scraping projects in the coming year.

Precise Automation

Playwright is precise and accurate as it works on almost all browsers and breaks down complex interactions. This feature helps the tool to handle dynamic content.

Also, it emphasizes performance and speed, which in turn verifies accuracy and speeds up execution.

Cross-browser Testing

Selenium features broad browser support, endless integration with several programming languages, and flexibility to handle different scenarios.

Moreover, it has an extensive and experienced community of continuous updates, leading to successfully running your scraping projects.

Headless Browser Support

Although both Playwright and Selenium feature headless browser support, Playwright wins in streamlining headless operations.

Without using a visible browser window, you can carry out web scraping tasks. Also, it helps contribute to the success of your data extraction tasks.

Unique Features of Playwright and Selenium

Extended Features

Selenium is not just used for QA automation, making it ideal for scraping and testing.

Developers can access integrations, plugins, extensions, and many more. Finally, it ensures that you can successfully scrap projects in time.

Ingenious Features

The advanced features in Playwright enhance the performance and quality of web scraping.

Also, it aims at improving debugging efficiency and the quality of the outcomes from web scraping tasks.

Integration with Testing Frameworks

Selenium supports legacy integration with testing frameworks and helps development teams become familiar with Selenium. Therefore, it focuses on the success of legacy web scraping.

To end with, you must know the success of web scraping projects largely depends on the selection of tools.

As seen, both the QA automation tools offer unique benefits, and the combined features give you the power to extract useful information. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Does AI execute web scraping?

Yes. AI-enabled web scraping uses machine learning and natural language processing (NLP) to automate website data collection.

Why should you select Selenium as a testing tool for web applications?

Selenium is one of the most common open-source tools for web application testing. Furthermore, it features screen recording so that the QA automation team can perform tests manually and play it repeatedly in the test runs in the future. 

Is Playwright more popular than Selenium?

Playwright supports almost all browsers compared to the Selenium framework. Further, it has become more popular because of its versatility and advanced features.

ThinkPalm’s QA automation Services

Are you planning to automate software application testing? Look no further than ThinkPalm’s automated testing solutions!

Automated software testing forms part of the quality assurance and performance of applications.

ThinkPalm uses advanced QA automation testing tool frameworks to suit the requirements of your business. 

With a focus on reducing testing times, enhancing quality and performance, and minimizing costs, we use state-of-the-art technologies for automated testing.

Both Playwright and Selenium ensure that you embrace success to benefit your enterprise.

Explore our range of authentic services in QA automation and enjoy hassle-free performance for your website and web applications! Try out today and contact test automation experts at ThinkPalm to meet your test automation needs.

Contact us for QA Automation Services

Author Bio

Silpa Sasidharan is a content writer and social media copywriting expert working at ThinkPalm Technologies, who aspires to create marketing texts for topics spanning from technology, automation and digital business solutions.