Suppose you’re new to the automation testing world. In that case, you have most likely heard about Selenium. It is one of the most popular and widely-used browser automation tools, and many testing teams use it.
And you probably wonder what testing types are supported and can be done using Selenium?
In this article, I will address that in depth. You will be able to list out all the testing types you can do with Selenium by the end of the article.
Also, we are going to discuss why Selenium is preferred over other test automation tools.
The types of testing that can be automated using Selenium are
- Regression Testing
- Sanity Testing
- Smoke Testing
- UI Testing
- Database Testing
- Cross-Browser Testing
For those who want to know more about these types of testing, we’ll go into more detail now.
Testing Types that can be Automated with Selenium
Functional Testing is a type of software testing where an application is tested against the product’s functional requirements and specifications. Functional Testing aims to test each software application functionality (or product feature) by providing sufficient input and checking the output against the functional specifications.
It’s a quality assurance activity that responds to this question: Are we building the product right?
In the simplest terms, functional testing tests an application, website, or system to ensure it performs as expected.
Smoke Testing is typically carried out on initial software builds to ensure that the program’s essential functionality performs correctly. The outcome of this testing is used to determine if a build is stable enough to carry out further tests. Smoke testing is also known as “Build Verification Testing” or “Confidence Testing.”
Sanity Testing is a form of software testing performed to ensure that code changes are working correctly and that no further issues are introduced due to these changes. Sanity testing’s primary objective is to determine that the changes or the proposed functionality are working as expected.
If the sanity test fails, the software product is rejected by the quality assurance team. Early detection of defects saves time and money when developing products.
Often known as GUI testing, UI testing is testing the application’s graphical user interface to verify whether it meets the expected performance and functionality. The purpose of Graphical User Interface (GUI) Testing is to ensure UI functionality works as designed.
UI testing involves testing all visual indicators and graphical icons, including menus, radio buttons, text boxes, checkboxes, toolbars, colors, and fonts.
The main aspects verified in UI testing include
- Visual Design
Database testing validates database consistency and integrity of data. Testing includes validating schema, tables, and database triggers. Database testing involves complex queries for executing performance tests on the database.
Database testing consists of a layered process that includes the UI layer, business layer, data access layer, and the database itself.
Cross-Browser Testing is a type of testing to verify if an application works across different browsers as expected. It is the process of verifying your application across other browsers for compatibility checks.
Cross-Browser Testing essentially helps us ensure our application’s compatibility across all the browsers used by the End User of the Application.
Regression testing is defined as a type of software testing to ensure that the existing features have not been adversely affected by a recent program or code change.
Regression testing is nothing but a complete or partial selection of already executed test cases re-executed to ensure existing functionalities work perfectly.
- Re-Testing: All the tests in the existing test suite should be re-executed.
- Regression Suite: Selection of test cases that verify existing features are not affected by code changes to the application. Test cases are categorized into two parts:
- Reusable test cases that can be used in further regression cycles.
- Obsolete test cases that can not be used in succeeding cycles.
- Prioritization: Prioritize the test cases depending on business impact, critical & frequently used functionalities. Selecting test cases based on priority will significantly reduce the regression test suite.
An overview of Selenium and its advantages
Before discussing Selenium’s advantages and why it is preferred over other automation testing tools, let’s first understand Selenium.
What Is Selenium?
Selenium is a free, distributed, open-source testing tool used to verify web applications through browsers and platforms. You can use popular programming languages to create Selenium Test Scripts. Testing done using the Selenium tool is usually referred to as Selenium Testing.
Selenium Software is a suite of automation tools, each component appealing to an organization’s multiple testing needs.
There are four categories/components of Selenium Suite:
- Selenium IDE (which is now deprecated)
- Selenium RC (Selenium Integrated Development Environment)
- Selenium Grid
Webdriver and Selenium grid technologies are combined and known as Selenium 2 and later updated to Selenium 3 to include new technologies.
Advantages of Using Selenium for Automated Testing
Language & Framework Support
You can write your scripts in multiple programming languages
Selenium can convert popular programming languages that correspond to Selenium in no time.
Selenium’s language has dedicated frameworks that help to automatically write a Selenium test script. You don’t have to worry about the programming language and supported operating systems when you go to Selenium as an automated testing framework because Selenium does it for you!
One of the main aspects adding to the value of Selenium is its integration into the open-source community. As an open-source website, Selenium is an automation framework that is free and available to the public.
As an open-source project, Selenium also helps you configure the code to make code control simpler and improve predefined functions and classes’ efficiency. Selenium has become the most common tool for web automation because of the ease with which test scripts are created to validate features.
“One Selenium script for all browsers” is what the Selenium community focused on and has been aiming at. You don’t need to rewrite scripts for every browser, just one script for all browsers.
Different operating systems support
Various users use various operating systems, and they must all be assisted by your automation tool. Selenium is also an extremely versatile platform supporting numerous operating systems such as Windows, Linux, Mac OS, and UNIX.
You can build Selenium test suites on any platform, like Windows, and run the same test suite on another platform, like Mac or Linux. This encourages developers and software testers to quickly write test automation scripts without focusing on the platform it will run on.
Reusability and Integrations
As mentioned earlier, Selenium automation test suites are reusable and can be tested over several browsers and operating systems. Yet, Selenium isn’t an all-inclusive web automation testing tool. Hence, it needs third-party frameworks and add-ons to broaden the scope of testing.
To handle test cases and produce reports, you need to incorporate Selenium with TestNG and JUnit, for example. You’ll need to combine it with specific CI / CD software like Jenkins, Maven, and Docker to accomplish continuous testing. Also, you need to integrate Selenium with tools like Sikuli to perform image-based testing.
Parallel Test Execution
Above everything, Automated testing helps us saving time and effort. With the aid of the Selenium Grid, We can run multiple tests in parallel, thereby reducing the time needed to execute these tests. Using cloud grids for cross-browser testing, you can use Selenium to test for as many as hundreds of browsers in parallel, thus saving you time.
Selenium is supported by an active community. We all know that an active community likes to keep up to date. The Selenium community often releases regular updates and incremental improvements.