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Getting Started with Test Automation Using Selenium WebDriver

Automation testing has become one of the most important market standards for ensuring that you provide the best end-user experience to your customers. During the early years of the application development market, the apps were mainly targeted to perform one task at a time. These applications were fairly simple, and the developers could verify their performance with the help of complete manual test cases.

However, as time began to proceed and the end users became more and more engaged in their lives, they wanted an all-around solution. This means that customers want an application that can meet almost all of their uses with a single platform. So, to meet these expectations, the app development companies had to massively increase the complexity of their app. Selenium WebDriver is an important component of the modern app testing market.

In this article, we’re going to discuss everything that you need to know about the best practices related to the performance of automation testing. We are also going to discuss some of the important factors of getting started with test automation using the Selenium WebDriver.

Basic Idea of Test Automation

Test automation is a modern testing trend that helps developers to eliminate the hassle of manually conducting the repetitive test cases involved in the application development lifecycle. These repetitive test cases often consist of regression testing that verifies the stable performance of all the elements of an application while releasing its update. This helps to eliminate a lot of hassle, time, and resources that the developers were wasting behind these test cases.

With the introduction of automation testing, the developers just have to use some text files consisting of various preloaded parameters that will help in the execution of these testing processes. The developers can also change the parameters and data present in these files to customize them according to the requirements of their development project.

Automation testing also helps app developers to reuse almost 60% of the test data. This means that the developers can safely store and use the test cases in future app development projects as well. While we’re on the topic of automation testing, it is worth mentioning that the initial cost of integrating this testing process is quite high. This means that the developers have to invest quite a lot of money to get started with test automation. So, the companies need to verify that they can sustain these expenses. Moreover, test automation isn’t a form of instant profit as it is a long-term investment.

Moreover, the developer should also understand that with the current state of technology, test automation cannot replace the need for a human developer. This is because certain testing processes like exploratory testing and visual element testing depend on the knowledge and understanding of a human developer. So, to utilize the full potential of a test bench, the developers have to understand the balance between automation testing and manual testing. It’s also important for app development companies to hold frequent seminars to spread proper awareness regarding this aspect.

Understanding Selenium

The basic definition of Selenium is that it is an open-source umbrella project to initiate automation test cases on web applications. Since its initial release in 2004, Selenium has gone through four major updates and managed to dominate a major segment of the automation testing industry for almost 10 years now. The Selenium test suite consists of different tools for performing different sections of the automation testing process. The initial name for this framework was JavaScriptTestRunner, as it works in this popular programming language. The major drawback of Selenium is that it can introduce automation test cases on only web applications.

Considering the diversity of the modern app market, it can massively hamper the development capabilities of app developers. The major components of the Selenium test suite are as follows:

  1. Selenium WebDriver is probably the most important component of the Selenium test suite as it is not only responsible for the initiation of the test cases but also for its proper execution on the target elements. We will learn more about it in the later part of this article.
  2. Selenium Grid helps app developers initiate parallel testing on the automation test cases to further improve their efficiency.
  3. Selenium IDE is responsible for generating the test cases. It analyzes the user interactions and continues to create the test cases accordingly in real time.

Getting Started with Automation Testing with Selenium WebDriver

Now that we have finished discussing all the basic information related to Selenium WebDriver and the Selenium test suite, it is time to understand how the Selenium WebDriver can help the developers to introduce automation testing:

  • The first step is to download the latest version of Java and the Java integrated development environment kit like Eclipse. The developers must ensure that they’re downloading all these files from the official website to avoid security issues.
  • The next step in this process is to download the Selenium test suite, including the Selenium WebDriver, from the official website.
  • Developers have to integrate the Selenium WebDriver with the Java-integrated development environment kit. For this process, the developers have to write a specific command in the terminal window of the Selenium test file.
  • It is also important to create a project folder as it will store all the test files. One of the most important steps is to name the test files according to the target elements, as it will help the developers to keep track of all the test cases. This is a very important feature for complex web applications that have thousands of different elements.
  • Selenium WebDriver comes with a massive community of tech enthusiasts who are always ready to help new developers. So, the developers always have the option to refer to this community whenever they are stuck with any feature of this test suite.
  • Unlike Selenium RC, Selenium WebDriver can directly interact with all the elements present on a web application and the website. This means using the Selenium WebDriver; the developers can natively test the features of an application on all the target browsers. This is a very important process for improving the overall accuracy of the test cases.

Influence of Platforms and Tools in Selenium Automation Testing

The elements related to automation testing can be overwhelming to developers who are new to this segment. This is because the process of creating a test case and executing it is quite complex for newcomers. However, the easiest solution is the integration of various platforms and tools that are easily available in the present market. These platforms also help the testers to use certain third-party features to further improve the quality of the development project.

For instance, multiple cloud platforms help app developers to initiate the testing processes on multiple cloud servers. These platforms help app developers to eliminate the hassle of maintaining an onsite device test lab. These test labs are very important to ensure that their application is properly functioning on all the popular devices in the current market.

So, we can easily say that it will cost a fortune for the app developers to set up such a bench consisting of hundreds of different devices. Moreover, it is a very hard process to keep these benches updated as thousands of new devices appear on the market every year. On the other hand, cloud platforms help app developers to conduct these test cases on similar devices but on cloud servers.

The major benefit of this integration is that the developers can execute unlimited test cases and initiate them from anywhere around the globe. To access all of these features, the application developers and testers only have to pay a low license fee to get started. We can understand more about the benefits of cloud-based testing by shifting our focus towards LambdaTest:

To begin the discussion, we can introduce LambdaTest to the new developers as a safe and secure cloud platform to initiate modern, cross-browser testing on complex web apps. After analyzing the app market, we can easily say that cross-browser testing has become the new standard of ensuring that you provide your customers with the best web app experience. This is because, with this testing process, the developers can guarantee that the application performs smoothly, irrespective of shifts in the OS or browser versions.

LambdaTest has various advanced features to improve the efficiency of cross-browser test cases. For instance, with the help of parallel test execution, the developers can initiate different test configurations at the same time. Experts believe that with this feature, this platform can improve the efficiency of the test cases by almost 15 times.

While using this platform, app testers can import automation test cases from different popular frameworks like Selenium, Playwright, and Cypress. As we are on the topic of Selenium, it is worth mentioning that while using Selenium test cases, LambdaTest can execute them on over three thousand different browsers at the same time. LambdaTest can improve the accuracy of the test cases by considering the test results from multiple emulators, simulators, and hundreds of real cloud-based devices.

Conclusion

So, we can easily conclude that the Selenium WebDriver is an important component of the modern application development market. With this component, the developers can highly improve the quality and experience of the application development lifecycle. However, it is also very important for app developers to properly implement this latest testing trend to utilize its full potential. So, one of the best practices for app-developing companies is to spread proper awareness regarding the importance of automation testing.

Many experts believe that with time, automation test cases will continue to dominate the app development standards. So, automation testers and companies must begin the transition to survive in this competitive market. Lastly, automation testers need to choose the correct tool for utilizing the full potential of the application test bench. It is also important for app developers to understand the requirements of their target audience.

Alex Careyhttps://www.thetechnoverts.com
Alex Carey is working as a Content Marketing Specialist at The Technoverts. He loves to write and share content related to the latest technical research. He is also a soccer lover.