10 Best Practices for Automation Testing in Software Development
Considering modern application development practices, we can safely say that automation testing is one of the most vital components of this practice.
This is because the structural integrity of the applications has evolved so that the developers cannot verify the functioning of all the components and elements manually.
Moreover, the developers have to change their testing practices in such a way that they verify not only the individual performance of the elements but also their combined functioning.
With the help of automation testing, the developers can easily accomplish all of these goals while massively improving the efficiency of the testing process.
Automation testing also plays a critical role in improving the overall quality of the application.
With this article, we’re going to take a comprehensive look at some of the best practices developers can implement in their automation testing environment.
We will also briefly examine some of the best tools and platforms that can help the evolution of automation testing practices.
Understanding Automation Testing
As the name suggests, it is the practice of automatically testing the applications with the help of certain predetermined conditions.
These conditions mainly include various parameters and sample datasets in a text file. During the execution of automation testing, the testbench will use these parameters to check the functioning of the application against these values.
The developers also have the option of changing the data according to the requirements of the application development project.
So we can easily say that the customization abilities of automation testing help the developers to improve its accuracy.
One of the major advantages of automation testing is its reusability and simple maintenance. Many experts believe that it is possible almost to reuse 60% of automation test data.
Storing this data is also very easy and economical.
One thing the developers must remember is that the initial expenses of introducing automation testing are quite high.
This is because the developers will have to take care of various systems and software at the initial setup time. So, the introduction of automation testing often becomes impossible for individual creators and small startup companies.
It is advisable that app companies must consider their business approach and possible returns on investment before beginning the transition.
Best Practices for Automation Testing in Software Development
Automation testing can be quite complex and overwhelming for new developers. However, certain practices can help decrease test automation’s complexity massively.
So, we have conducted market research on the most efficient automation testing practices. Based on our search results, they are as follows:
1. Have an Idea About Test Priority
To utilize the full potential of automation testing, the developers must have a clear idea about all the test cases that can benefit from it.
A market study shows that the most beneficial automation testing tests are unit, data-driven, UI, and regression testing.
The new developers should start automation testing practices with unit testing as it helps break up all the application elements into smaller segments.
2. Separate the Automation Tests
Sorting the automation test cases based on the target element will help the developers to simplify the results.
This process will also help the automation testers to prioritize the test cases according to their role in the overall functioning of the application.
This process would also help the companies allocate the test cases to certain testers with the required expertise.
3. Adopt Collective Test Ownership
For the proper utilization of automation testing practices, the entire app development company must be aware of the status and progress.
This will help not only the developers but also the testers to contribute in a meaningful way toward the successful completion of the project.
Moreover, there should be efficient lines of communication between a company’s testing, development, and business teams.
This is yet another process towards achieving proper implementation of agile methodologies.
4. Remove all the Test Uncertainties
Uncertainties in test cases can massively slow down and degrade the efficiency of the test cases. So, while using automation testing, the developer should try to remove all of these uncertainties from the test bench.
For instance, the developers must verify the efficiency and integrity of all the test data and the code. Ensuring the integrity of the codebase also helps to eliminate the possibility of errors like a false positive and a false negative.
These errors can arise when all the web application elements are functioning properly, but the system chooses an error and vice versa.
Experts believe that the possibilities of such errors are higher when the developers are working with unstable tests in regression data.
5. Integrate the Correct Automation testing Tool or Platform
Tools go a long way in improving the simplicity of automation test cases. This is because various tools come with multiple unique features for enhancing the developers’ testing practices and overall satisfaction.
For instance, certain cloud-based tools help developers to eliminate the need for physical test devices. This is because, with the help of these tools, the developers can test the application over the web on real devices. Let us learn more about the basics of cloud-based testing with LambdaTest as a center point:
For the introductory part, LambdaTest is an efficient cloud platform for initiating and executing secure cross-browser testing on web apps.
In a modern app market, cross-browser testing has become the mandatory standard for ensuring that you provide the best end-user satisfaction.
This is because, with the help of cross-browser compatibility test cases, the developers can ensure the highest system performance instead of shifts in the OS version, browser edition, or the entire hardware specifications.
LambdaTest also helps to ensure side-by-side testing with the help of parallel test execution. All these practices can improve testing efficiency by almost 15 times.
LambdaTest can import automation test cases from multiple popular frameworks like Selenium, Cypress, and Playwright.
It is worth mentioning that while working with Selenium test cases, the developers will execute them on more than 3000+ unique browser versions.
LambdaTest can also verify the proper functioning of locally hosted web apps for internal execution.
6. Choose the Correct Test Automation Framework
Automation frameworks are responsible for initiating and executing the automation test cases. Selenium has been the dominant name in this industry for several years now. However, currently, there are many new alternatives, like Cypress and the Playwright.
In such a case, the developers must choose the correct tools to serve their requirements. For instance, with Selenium, developers can only initiate automation test cases on web applications.
This can be a massive limitation considering that there are multiple types of applications like native apps, web apps, and hybrid apps. While choosing the test automation framework, the developer should also consider the support for multiple test libraries, datasets, and automation tools.
All these features will help the developers realize their test bench’s full potential.
7. Focus on Real Device Testing
A physical test bench consists of multiple real devices that the developers can use to ensure the stable performance of their applications.
However, there are various obstructions while maintaining a physical test bench. For instance, it is costly to have multiple devices available in the company. Moreover, keeping the bench updated is a very hectic process, considering the thousands of new devices that come every year.
In such a scenario, many developers often take shortcuts and limit the testing process to only simulators and emulators.
However, this software can never replicate the physical specifications of a device. So, it is impossible to understand the impact of various situations like low battery, broken display, or even user error.
Therefore, there is no way to eliminate real device testing in an automation test bench. However, the developers can use cloud testing as an efficient alternative to a physical test bench.
8. Maintain an Activity Log
Automation testing is primarily introduced in web applications that deal with multiple elements. So the developers need to maintain an activity log while working with all of these elements.
This is because this activity log will help the developers to keep track of not only the ongoing test cases but also those test cases that have already been completed.
An activity log also has an integrated impact on the debugging process that will follow. Various tools and platforms can help developers to maintain such a log. An activity log will also help the developers to improve their Agile methodologies.
9. Prioritize Data-Driven Tests
Data-driven automation test cases are highly beneficial when developers work with multiple data points. This is because, with the help of a single test and data set, the developers can work their way through multiple arrays of data parameters and simplify the testing process.
These test cases are highly beneficial when developers work on applications that rely on user interaction. In such a case, the system must handle random data sets that the user will enter. Multiple tools can help generate random datasets for the verification process of these features.
10. Use Early and Frequent Testing
To utilize the full potential of an automation test bench, the developers must implement these practices during the early stages of the application development process. This will help the developers to execute the development and testing processes side by side. Moreover, early testing practices also help developers to save a lot of time and effort. These practices also help the developers to find out critical bugs in the app that can cripple the development practices in the future.
With this article, we have tried to focus on the importance of automation testing in the modern app development setup. Many experts believe that test automation will continue to gain more popularity in the coming years.
However, shocking data shows that only 60% of app companies have adopted this trend. So, we suggest the remaining companies start making the transition as soon as possible.
The app developers and testers should also try to keep themselves updated with all the modern automation testing trends.
This is one of the most important features of creating an interactive portfolio for the future app market. Test automation will also help companies to withhold their position and increase their audience in this competitive segment.