QA tester, automation specialist, automation systems engineer — these are just a few of the names for a test automation engineer. No matter what their title may be, they're essential to the software development life cycle, so here's a look at what they do. Markets and...
Testing your software is one of the most important parts of the software development process. Using an automated GUI tool can help speed up the process, but you might be wondering what you should expect from automated GUI testing. We will explain exactly what it is and why it is essential to test your GUI.
Why is it better to use automated GUI testing tools instead of the manual version that was mainstream for a very long time? How can automated testing save your company time and money and get your new application out faster? We’ll answer these questions and more below.
What Is Automated GUI Testing?
To understand what automated GUI testing is, you have to first understand the term. It is an acronym for Graphical User Interface. In other words, it is the part of an application that is visible to the users, and it is everything that your users see. That can be menus or buttons, text boxes, images, and more. It does get mixed in with UI tests at times, but it is slightly different from UI automation.
So, what is GUI testing? For example, the GUI for a calculator app would be the number buttons and making sure that they respond correctly. It would mean checking that the buttons you push correspond with the correct command. When you press the number two, a five shouldn’t appear on the screen. This is one of the big ways a user can see if the application is working in the way it is supposed to.
Before you release your application, you will have to test whether or not all of the functions of the Graphical User Interface work as you have planned. When you use a GUI automated testing tool, you do these tests with software that runs the test for you instead of manually checking everything.
Why You Should Stray Away From Manual Tests
The first factor is the speed at which you get your test results from automation tools. In manual testing, all tests are done by humans with the help of software. Humans need to check every little detail manually, but with automated testing, this process is done entirely with software. A program can do them much quicker than manual checks.
Automation is also more reliable since no human element can make mistakes during testing. It is also more cost-effective as you won’t have to pay a human to complete the task, and it can save you time and money in the long run. You can also do multiple test scripts at a time, it will help you find a lot more bugs, and the process can be recorded. Your investors can even log on and see the results.
There are many more benefits to automation, and there are many reasons to go in this direction instead of staying with the manual option just because it is familiar.
What Can You Expect When You Switch to Automated GUI Tests?
It is hard to change to a new, unfamiliar testing system. We will break down some of what you can expect when you switch to automated GUI testing:
Detailed Reporting of the Automation Testing
This way of testing can ensure every little piece is tested, and it can record these results for you to see. It also allows you to create a customizable test report. With manual testing, even humans with the best intentions could miss writing something down or reporting on a particular aspect of the testing process.
This will never happen with manual testing since the software records all the data and the results as the tests are completed.
You can share these results with your investors and give them added peace of mind, knowing they can see all the data you are seeing.
Better Reliability Compared to Manual Testing
The human factor always leaves room for errors. After hours of repetitive testing and noting down results, testing fatigue is a real danger.
Programs don’t get tired or bored, and they do the job without losing steam. GUI testing that is automated is a lot more reliable than manual testing.
Codeless Test Creation for Non-Experts
Not everyone who will have a part in creating these apps will be a coder. You might not have much programming knowledge or the right skill level but are still responsible for the GUI testing process.
With the right automation testing tool, you don’t have to be an expert to create a test that can give you the answers you need.
There are codeless capture and play options that can make it possible for any team member to create a test, despite having slim to no programming knowledge. It allows for automated test development and efficient test creation.
It is easy to edit any recorded actions, add text and images, and even build data-driven tests without writing any code. The program assists you with all of the technical details.
There are options where the tests are done with only coding, but you don’t have to choose that option if you aren’t very familiar with programming.
Automated Data-Driven Testing
This version of software testing takes all of the data you have compiled and puts it into a test automation framework. It stores the test data in a table or a spreadsheet, and you can easily view it.
With automated data-driven testing, you have the bonus of knowing that no single piece of data will become lost and result in faulty results. Everything is considered in your results. It gives you all of the positive and negative outcomes from testing the data and can assist you with compiling all of the results.
Integration Capabilities for Testing Frameworks
Automated GUI testing tools are capable of integrating testing frameworks. This framework is the set of guidelines or rules that helps you create and design test cases. In other words, the GUI testing software can integrate the plan you have developed to test all parts of your program and ensure that it can work properly. The software can even pair with other solutions to create the best possible test for your new application.
Your users will see what you want them to see, and they won’t need to deal with any visual bugs that affect their experience. It also assists with software maintenance down the line and allows for continuous integration.
Best Practices for Graphical User Interface Testing
Some practices will allow the testing phase to run more smoothly and get everything you need out of it. You won’t even have to pay for a bunch of features that your applications don’t need.
Again, take the calculator app as an example. You would need to test the calculation and input features. But running extra tests to ensure music pairs with the app would be unnecessary and more than a little ridiculous. In other words, you need to ensure that each test will benefit your application in the end.
Distinguish Which Test Cases Will Be Automated
Some checks aren’t possible with automated testing, and others will take longer when done manually. But the good news is that you can do a combination of both.
The first step would be to distinguish which test cases will work best when they are automated. If there are many tedious, repetitive actions, you would probably want to do that test through automation. Or, if you want to go and check a single problem on your application, manual testing could still be the key.
Determine the problem areas you want to look at closely and then decide which tests will be automated and which ones will stay on the manual option.
Run More Than One Type of Test
Running just one type of test will not give you a complete picture of your new software. It isn’t enough. A few different automated tests can be beneficial for your app, and a combination would be one of the best ways to get the entire picture and find any bugs that one test could have missed. A great GUI testing tool will be able to run a combination of tests.
Just a few of the GUI testing techniques that could be beneficial in functional tests are:
- Scripted testing. This is when software testers create an entire script to test your tools from start to finish. For an e-commerce website, for example, these automatic scripts could take them through an entire shopping experience, from choosing the products to the checkout and everything in between. It will be able to tell you if the test has found any bugs in the process. Scripted testing can be adapted for all sorts of industries.
- Exploratory testing. This is when the tester explores the application and looks for any faults and mistakes.
- User experience testing. This could be even more crucial for GUI testing than for other types of software. The entire point of GUI testing is to ensure that what your users see and experience will be of a high standard and a product that you will be proud of. This test allows the tester to look through the eyes of the user and experience the app the same way they would. It mimics user actions and gives results based on that.
It all depends on your application and the tests you need to run on it. But you will likely need to do more than just one test per application.
Keep Your Tests Simple
Most humans have a way of overthinking things and making them more complicated than they need to be. Your tests do not have to be complicated. Keep them simple.
You want to test the application as your users will experience it. Most of the time, users aren’t looking for massive faults. They want an application that works well, and possibly even looks good while doing it.
That does not mean that you should not do a comprehensive test for your application. You still want to find any mistakes without your users needing to point them out for you.
But simple tests can be just as comprehensive and can give you great results. But with simple tests, you can understand the results better. When you show them to other people, like investors, they will understand the results too. Boosting their understanding and confidence in the results will encourage them to keep investing, which will increase revenue.
How To Get Started With Test Automation
Now that you know what to expect from automated GUI testing, you might be ready to move forward and start to switch from manual to automatic.
Do your homework and see how many benefits there are to automated GUI testing. It will save you time and money and pick up on more bugs than manual automation. It also has less risk of mistakes since the human error has been subtracted from the equation.
Still not entirely sure where to even start? Contact the experts, and we can help show you how to start your automation project. Ranorex studios can give you all the automated GUI testing tools you will ever need. It doesn’t matter which software industry you are in; we have created automated testing software that will be the perfect test to ensure that your application is the best it can be.
Contact us today for more information.
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