Importance of E2E Testing in application development

E2E Testing

One of the highest priorities for any software organization is to deliver high-quality software with unique features. However, organizations can not always guarantee their quality and feasibility unless the software and its components have been tested under different conditions. There are many testing approaches for addressing various components of the SDLC(Software Development Life Cycle). E2E Testing is a widespread technique among development teams.

What exactly is end-to-end testing?

It is a methodology for testing an application using automation tools from start to end along with its dependencies. A real-world user scenario is reproduced, and the application is tested from the user’s point of view. The goal is to determine whether the application behaves as intended and whether the integrity of the various system components is preserved. If any of these sub-components fails, the entire system fails. This is a significant risk in software development that can be avoided by using this testing procedure.

End-to-End Testing (E2E Testing) Methodology

End to end testing can be performed in 2 ways: vertically or horizontally. Horizontal testing is more powerful and widely used. Vertical testing is performed when important components of a sophisticated computing system that do not involve users or interfaces must be tested. Both types help you in achieving the same goal, but each has its own set of requirements and benefits.

End-to-End Horizontal Testing

In this type of testing, the end user’s perspective is taken into account. In horizontal testing, the end user’s perspective is taken into account.  It determines if the user can browse the application and perform its functionalities as planned. 

End-to-End Vertical Testing

This type of testing is performed in levels or layers, meaning that the tests are performed in a specific hierarchy or sequence. Each subcomponent of a system has to be tested from start to end to maintain its quality. This is typically used when the system lacks a UI or when the UI has a high level of complexity.

When can you apply for End to End testing?

There can be plenty of reasons to apply for end-to-end testing. For instance, let’s take an example to understand this further.

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Before moving into the phase of testing, designers and developers create a list mentioning UI, features, or functions that need to be done. Data flow is then tracked to find the dependencies and any inaccuracies or flaws between systems.

Once the development is complete, end-to-end testing comes into play that makes the team review a test of this finished product or application. A repeated test is done if the system fails to provide an expected outcome. If an issue occurs, the development team will have to then debug to determine the origin of the issue, fix it and send it further to retest.

How can you track the progress of End to End Tests?

Assume that the team has agreed on implementing end-to-end tests and the test plan has been created accordingly. But the very important step here is to consider the metrics.

  • Test Case Preparation: Finding the correct test scenarios and getting the right test cases created for every feature is a very important step. The test case matrix should represent the rate at which existing and planned test cases are working.
  • Weekly report: A weekly report showing the percentage of test completion which includes executed, not executed, and failed test cases can gauge the test progress correctly.
  • Defect management: Categorizing defects based on the percentage of defects each week based on status such as identified, closed, or open is necessary. Such distribution of defects will help testing teams and managers track the bugs and supervise the resolution.
  • Test environment availability:  This helps to compare the actual time spent vs the time that is scheduled for testing.

Why End to End Tests?

Before getting started with end-to-end tests, one should understand why including them in the test plan document and so in your testing life cycle is really important.

Here are some reasons –

  1. Testing the system as a whole

As the name suggests, end-to-end testing helps in testing each layer of the system, including the front end and back end since it is obvious that database testing is a must as well.

  1. Identifying defects in environments-
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Testing in diverse environments such as distributed, cloud, and heterogenous is possible. Defects in multiple components of the application can be detected.

  • Smooth experience and correct interaction-

End-to-end testing ensures that the application runs smoothly and offers a seamless experience across multiple environments and platforms.

  • Improves test coverage and conducts repeated tests –

End-to-end testing ensures the execution of repeated tests for different components and processes of application at different points in time. It improves the test coverage by validating the complete application and making sure that the sub-module works as expected.

Benefits of End-to-End Testing

Reduced  risk

End-to-end testing is performed after a small span of time called a sprint or iteration. This minimizes the likelihood of future dangers considerably.

Improved Confidence

The functionality and performance of the application are verified extensively at every level. Since this testing is done from the end user’s viewpoint, it helps in boosting confidence in the application’s readiness at the time of release.

Cost and time efficiency

Since the application has been completely tested at all layers, it does not need to be tested again. This decreases testing costs and time drastically while increasing efficiency in other processes.

How to get started?

Below mentioned is a step-by-step process as to how you can start end-to-end testing for your application.

  • Choose the correct testing framework –

The selection of an appropriate testing framework to start your testing is the very first step if you are going for end-end-end automation testing. While there are plenty of tools available in the market, we believe that no one tool fits all. Understand your application requirements, think of your budget and consider selecting the correct tool.

  • Go for the important tests-

Not every test is important every time. Once your test suite is complete, before selecting an end-to-end test, only pick those that you feel are important. Remember E2E testing is different from Regression testing.

  • Don’t let the failing tests ship to production

Consider implementing a CI/CD pipeline to avoid shipping the failed tests to production.

Final Thoughts

E2E testing is crucial in ensuring that application users have a positive experience. Analyzing the user experience from beginning to end provides greater assurance about the application’s workflow than simply checking if a model appears or a function performs properly. In addition, it’s a low-cost solution to confirm your application functions as you and your users intended.