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How to Optimally Use Selenium For Automating Application Testing

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Selenium is a software testing tool that is used in the process of software development to automate testing tasks. It is an open-source tool that helps in automating web applications and its usage has been on rising with time because of its various advantages. Selenium is used for automating user interface-related tasks. This tool works well with all the major browsers present in the market. The tests are written using the Selenium IDE, Eclipse, WebDriver, or any other IDE of your own choice.

Tests can be created for a single element or several elements depending on the requirement. This article will give you a clear idea about how to optimally use Selenium for automating application testing and how it can be used to increase productivity.

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Test Early

Test automation is a crucial part of the software development process. It saves money, increases productivity, and improves quality. When the regression test cases can be automated early in the project life cycle, several benefits can be derived from this approach:

  • Earlier test case coverage: Since automation code is typically written as part of the application code, it is often more accurate and fast than manual tests. As a result, more complex scenarios that would have been difficult to automate (manually), are covered earlier in the life cycle.
  • Improved efficiency: Automation code is typically reused across similar projects. Since most of the test cases can be executed without any human intervention, less time is spent on performing manual testing compared to executing manual test cases.
  • Reduced effort: Performing regression testing manually requires a lot of effort and time and hence must be avoided if possible. Automating these tests enables testers to perform other activities that add value to the product such as exploratory testing or validating defects reported by customers.
  • Lower costs: Manual testers are expensive so it makes sense to use them for exploratory testing or other activities where they require human intelligence rather than simply executing automated scripts.

Use BDD Framework

Although you can use Selenium without a test framework, it’s better to use one. Most frameworks support BDD (behavior-driven development). BDD follows a test pyramid model where there are many more low-level unit tests than high-level end-to-end tests. A good BDD framework provides an infrastructure to run these tests and report their results.

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Tests must be coded using a BDD (behavior-driven development) framework so that the tests describe what an application should do instead of how it works under the hood. This makes it easier for developers who don’t have expert knowledge in the technology being tested to understand what changes will break existing functionality and requires fewer resources to fix bugs.

  • BDD framework is easy to understand.
  • BDD framework is easy to maintain.
  • BDD framework is easy to read and understand by other people, as the scenarios are written in plain language.
  • BDD framework reduces the maintenance cost of test scripts.
  • BDD framework can be used for both Web-based applications and non-Web-based applications as well.
  • The tests created with a BDD tool can be understood by non-technical users too, which makes it more ideal for acceptance testing of any application.
  • As it follows the Given-When-Then pattern, it can be easily integrated with any existing testing framework such as JUnit, TestNG Junit, etc.
  • Most importantly, the end goal of BDD is to make the tests more readable by non-technical users such as business analysts and product owners, which means that they will be able to review your code better.

Taking Screenshots In Case Of Failure

Selenium is the most popular tool used for automating web application testing. Selenium can be used to record and playback a sequence of user actions against a web application, which is useful for regression testing. Selenium also supports functional testing, where actual results are compared with expected results.

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You can also use Selenium to perform more sophisticated testing by taking screenshots automatically whenever there is a failure. Selenium has some built-in functionality that allows you to do so.

Early Designing Of Tests To Automation

Selenium is a powerful tool and has the potential to save you a lot of time when it comes to automating your QA process. However, it is not always easy to know how best to use it to achieve maximum returns on your investment. 

As a rule, you should always design your tests before attempting to automate them. This includes deciding what your goals are and what test data you need to achieve them; if you automate first, there’s a risk that some of your scripts may turn out to be redundant or not cover all the required areas of your application. If this happens, you’ll have to go back and edit previous tests to complete the suite, which can be both difficult and time-consuming.

Identifying What To Automate

The advantage of automation testing is that it allows you to ensure in the long run that your application is stable and bug-free. It also enables you to change the application or its environment without having to manually test each time, which makes it easier for your development team to release new features quickly. However, automating testing can be challenging if you don’t know what to test and how.

The best way to find out what should be automated and what shouldn’t is by using a risk-based approach. This means that you first identify the risks in your application and then focus on automating the tests that will mitigate these risks.

Automating Frequent And Predictable Test Cases

Automating the most frequent and predictable test cases is a well-known test automation technique. But how exactly can we do it?

First, we have to understand what frequent and predictable means. Frequency means “the number of times the test case is executed each day.” Predictability means “the time you need to wait for this test case to fail.” Those two properties are very different. For example, a test that runs only once per month might be very frequent if the application rarely fails in the meantime, but it’s not predictable at all.

Test cases that are both frequent and predictable are easy to automate. The problem is that these are not necessarily the most important tests from the end user’s perspective.

The next step is to define the most important test cases from the end user’s perspective, by determining which ones help them achieve their business objectives and succeed in their jobs (and thus lead to promotions). Essentially we make a list of all business-critical features/scenarios and find a way to automate them (manually or with automated testing), as they are likely to run more frequently than other scenarios because they can’t be completed without passing through many of those scenarios.

Creating High-Quality Test Data

Selenium is an automated testing tool that can be used to automate browser-based testing. When it comes to developing test data or creating test cases, we don’t have much knowledge about Selenium.

Testing Data for Selenium refers to the data that will be supplied to the selenium browser automation code for performing the test. This means that we need to generate real-world data where the user performs some operations using some data and checks it against some expected results.

The best way to do this is by using Test Data Generators. A Test Data Generator is a piece of software that is used by a team to create high-quality test data for testing any application, website, or system. The use of a Test Data Generator helps in creating better test cases and provides better coverage of the target application.

Test Data Generators are used by many companies to simplify their testing process and increase productivity.

Choosing The Correct Selenium Test Automation Platform

Test automation tools are getting more advanced, software testing is a hot field and job market. Also, your business must save time and money. You must know how to choose the right Selenium test automation platform for your needs.

You may think that if you have a great software development team, you don’t need such extensive automation. Not so fast!

The modern development process calls for continuous integration and delivery of new features. If you’re working with a small team or even just one developer, you can’t afford to have bugs in your application, because fixing them will take too much time.

So, what do you need to keep in mind?

1) Scalability

Do you want to run tests for one product or hundreds of products? Do you need support for legacy applications? Do you plan to use the same test suite for different platforms? A good Selenium test automation platform should be able to handle anything from a desktop application to an app for mobile devices with various screen sizes and operating systems.

2) Performance

How many tests can your software run in a specified period? How much memory does it require? What happens if the test server has limited resources? Can the test platform monitor its performance? etc.

Selenium test automation platforms like Lambdatest allow you to write functional, automated tests. Cross-browser testing tools like LambdaTest will execute your tests on 3000+ environments, including all major browsers on the appropriate operating systems, and report detailed results and screenshots directly to your screen.

You can run the same test suite in different browsers to ensure that your website works as expected. You don’t have to install any software, so you can be sure that your test system is free from any trace of corporate IT policy. Your test results will be stored in a central location, allowing you to easily find and compare results with other browsers.

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James Musoba
James Musoba
Studying Africa's startup and technology scene. I always look forward to discovering new exciting inventions and vibrant entrepreneurs.

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