We continue to talk about different types of testing that a QA engineer can use to improve the quality of testing coverage. Today we’re going to guide you through automated regression testing with its meaning and usage, types and benefits, as well as different automated testing software solutions. Read the full article to discover the strategy of running automated regression tests with no coding. Here we go!
What is Automated Regression Testing Software?
The automated regression testing technique helps to check whether the app works as it should after new code pieces, features or updates have been added to its functionality. In other words, QA engineers use it before the app release to make sure that the code changes didn’t affect the product’s functionality badly. Regression testing automation covers many workflows, including checking if the software works properly after all the updates, identifying functional errors, and resolving issues with supporting services that may have occurred during the update.
Automated Regression Testing Benefits
To start with, let’s consider which benefits can you get using regression testing automation. First of all, automation of regression testing brings you all the common advantages of QA automation: it is much faster and its performance is higher if compared to a manual one.
The reason is simple: automated software regression testing tools are able to run thousands of tests just a few seconds after you created the script. Second, they are more effective than humans in finding regression errors and poorly performing lines of code. These two main benefits allow automated regression testing tools to help companies save their budget and better allocate engineering resources.
But of course, that’s not all. Each modern automated testing tool has a bunch of ultimate benefits, revolutionizing the industry of QA. Below, you can find a list of ultimate DogQ benefits, which make it a top-market codeless test automation tool that can streamline and benefit your testing process:
1. Easy-to-use interface
Quickly build automated testing scripts without a single line of code. Fits even non-technical specialists with no background in QA:
- Enjoy intuitive UI
- Easy adopt with functionality
- Learn with handy tooltips
2. Multiple automation scenarios
Enjoy a variety of ready-made built-in test cases which allows to greatly automate test case generation:
- Save time on elements ID
- Discover new test scenarios
- Use Macros to boost efficiency
3. Test management
Add, change, copy, delete, and reset test runs at the touch of a button. Enjoy full transparency of the automated testing process:
- Make changes to scripts
- Check test runs history
- Get control over the testing process
4. Real-time analytics
Get timely visualized reports and graphics to track the number of passed and failed test runs, discover project insights, and find the product’s strong and weak sides:
- Get a visual statistics dashboard
- Track available run steps
- Take data-driven decisions
5. Test scheduling
Set automated testing at the end of each sprint, automate your working routine, and forget about hustle:
- Automate recurrent test scenarios
- Run all tests simultaneously
- Pause and reset scheduling if needed
6. Team management
Work with your project teammates, share and edit test scripts, and increase your test coverage:
- Assign different team roles
- Create sophisticated scenarios
- Boost your team’s performance
7. AI-driven testing
Build automated tests with specified keywords, emulate user actions, and tune the app UI according to the gained results:
- Use OCR-based text recognition
- Increase test speed and accuracy
- Get business-valuable insights
8. Essential integrations
Enjoy powerful 3rd-party integrations that can greatly speed up your daily routine, and free time for other tasks:
- Use CI/CD integrations
- Automate your workflow
- Get 100% test coverage
How to Do Automated Regression Testing
Before starting any regression testing automation strategy, QA engineers need to conduct research on the application, find out its main and additional functionality and define the software testing criteria based on the collected info. It is also critical to ensure that all the tests and insights have been properly documented, as you will need to re-run many of them during the next sprint.
The starting point for any regression testing strategy is a report of a malfunction in the code. Firstly, it should be confirmed and identified, then it’s broken down to know how and why the problems occur. The next step is fixing the code, and the final stage is running automated regression tests to make sure everything works fine, which are always of two categories:
- Tests to check the areas in the code that were most affected by a fix;
- Tests to cross-check every part of the code tampered with.
If we take the whole process into steps, we’ll get the following algorithm:
1. Requirements analysis – includes collecting the info on product requirements, code changes, possible test scenarios, and preferable communication between QA team members. The proper analysis of these requirements helps to avoid any last-minute problems during the testing itself;
2. Prioritization of the tests – selecting and prioritizing regression tests depending on the app requirements and functions, to bring as much business value as possible. This step often includes the following types of test cases:
- Test cases with the most frequent defects;
- The app functions that are visible to the users;
- Test cases that cover the core features of the product;
- Test cases that cover the recently changed app functionality;
- All integration and complex test cases;
- Samples of successful and failed test cases;
- Test cases with boundary value.
3. Choosing the proper tool involved in an automated regression test – includes initial research, trying the fitting tools’ demos, and choosing the most feasible tool, which is able to raise the app’s ROI;
4. Optimization of the test suites – it’s needed to cut on time and budget investments when you execute the same regression test again. You need to choose an appropriate regression test, put the tracking mechanism in there, and monitor any changes there. You should also regular screen and analyze the results and periodically clean up the history for better outcomes;
5. Preparing for the impact of the new changes – it’s important to ensure that the test changes affect the bug-free functionality of the application. The potential changes can be the integration of some new systems, functions, as well as modules.
We want to highlight here, that in cases where lots of modifications have been made to the app functionality, regression testing can be run on a fresh build. This makes it easier to check that the code continues to function properly, and in most cases is executed by an automation testing tool.
Best Practices in Using Automated Regression Testing Tools
Below we have collected the top 5 professional advice which can help you to make your strategy of regression testing well-tuned and optimized:
1. Regularly update your test cases – simply to make sure that the tests cover all new features and that slight changes have been added in the new version of the given app;
2. Save the passed test cases and re-run them – each new release brings up numerous changes to the code, as developers need to add new features and fix bugs. So it is crucial to re-run all the passed test cases each time to make sure that the whole app functionality still works correctly;
3. Categorize your regression test cases – by doing so, you will easily manage them and quickly find the necessary ones if needed. Even if a test fails, knowing which category it falls into makes it much easier to identify the source of the problem;
4. Pay extra attention to the key features of your app – every application has a list of features, which are the most important for the end-user. It is good to have a detailed list of the test scenarios for these features, as it will guarantee that the main functionality will always work properly;
5. Perform full regression testing only when it’s needed – run the full list of regression test cases only before core releases. In case of a minor release, it makes sense to perform simple smoke tests, and run a regression test scenario for a modified module.
Common Automated Regression Testing Examples and Methods
Before we feature an automated regression testing example, let’s describe what methods can be used by a QA engineer to perform regression testing:
1. Retest-all method – here issues and bugs that QA engineers have already dealt with are all retested to be sure those pieces of code are working properly;
2. Selective bug regression – here, every single issue is fixed are retested separately;
3. Migration (conversion or port) testing – here the app is migrated to a different platform, and testing is performed to make sure that the migrated app was successfully integrated. Here modifications in most cases occur within the newer environment;
4. Configuration method – this method is similar to the previous one, as here a later model of the app or device in use is tested similarly to the older one. The original platform doesn’t stay the same, only its environment and a few units integrated with the software are questioned;
5. Complete regression method – here a re-test is done on a larger scale, which means every area of the app, including those that functioned correctly during the previous builds. QA engineers test them again to check if any of the new modifications affected the bud-free app functionality;
6. Build verification – this method is one of the main parts of the regression testing technique. Here you don’t need to create lots of test cases, as every build is checked for any broken areas to know if it’s worth testing, or, whether any of the changed parts of the code are integrated well enough. When a given build doesn’t pass the smoke test, then it’s usually rejected at all, and not sent back with error reports for fixing;
7. The localization method – implies tuning the program to demonstrate that its software is connected with a foreign language and a different set of traditional rules. This usually requires lots of test cases, where most of the previously built test cases will be replaced in order to fit in the new language.
If we try to give some common examples of how regression testing is performed, in most cases we’ll have the following process, where regression testing is combined with manual:
- First release: As soon as the team of developers gets the app’s requirements, they start to build the future app structure and UI. After that, the QA team starts to write tests, let’s say about 1000-2000, that the future product will have to undergo, to guarantee a thorough test coverage. When the tests are ready, they are run on the automated regression test suite with two possible results: successful or not. According to the gained results, the product’s bugs are fixed until they can be released to the client for the first time and deployed for production.
- Second release: Here the client usually requests some additional functionality to be integrated into the app. As soon as engineers start working on it, the team of QA is here to help them with testing this new functionality. This time the number of tests is less, let’s say, around 500-200, as the number of functions being tested is also less. When the QA team finishes with the new functionality, they re-run the older 1000-2000 test cases written via an automated regression testing framework. This is needed to verify whether the whole app is working as implied with the new features. When everything is completed, the product is given again to the client for the mandatory acceptance testing. In case it’s successful, the build is deployed into production.
- Final release: At this stage, the client may ask the development team to add 1-2 slight changes in the app functionality, so usually the number of new regression tests here is around 100-200. After this stage, the app is considered successfully covered by tests and released into production.
A 100% Automated Regression Testing Example with DogQ
Regression testing is extremely important for ensuring that the app will function as it should, but it can be quite time-consuming when done with the help of coding. Using DogQ codeless testing tool, you can automate regression testing and get a 100% testing coverage of your app with no coding required. Let’s review a quick testing example consisting of 5 steps, such as checking a Contact-Us form.
Recently, we tested the functionality of our client’s website, 5ly.co. The goal was to quickly find all possible issues on the client side and fix them before the launch. Let’s consider the DogQ functionality and performance in the example with the client’s contact form. We used the following regression testing strategy here:
1. The first step is to create the right test scenario for the contact form, which is similar to a regular flow of user experience:
- Firstly, we need to find and open the "Contact Us" page;
- Then, find and click on the "Name" input field;
- After that, we need to enter the correct value in this field and do the same for the rest of the form's fields;
- And finally, we should see a confirmation window in case of success.
2. The second step is to perform the first run. We pushed the button “Execute” and analyzed the results gained, then rerun this test case several times:
3. Next, the client made some changes to its webpage code, such as adding validation for the input fields, and we needed to check the contact form once more. DogQ engineers then emulated the usual user flow, filled all the input fields, and tried to click on submit button. Unfortunately, validation has a bug and didn’t work properly. Our new "Contact us" form look like this on the website:
That time, the button was not pressed and there was no confirmation modal window appeared. Our tool generated a report and highlighted an exact place, which was not working correctly, as you can see below:
4. Then the QA engineer reviewed the report. If the behavior on the page has changed, then he needs to modify the test script in accordance with these changes. The QA engineer also reviews the failed steps and creates a task for the development team to fix the discovered issues.
5. Finally, when the bug was fixed by our client’s engineering team, and the changes are applied to the website, the tester runs the tests again using DogQ to make sure they work correctly now:
We run this test case several times to make sure that everything works fine, and that the bug was fixed:
After that, we re-run all our previous test cases for this website to make sure that the new functionality didn’t ruin the website's performance. That’s how we covered with automated web regression testing 100% of our client’s website functionality.
Which Automated Regression Testing Tools to Choose
Automated regression testing tools for web applications are becoming more and more sophisticated year by year, with more effective algorithms, simpler and more intuitive design, and brand-new useful features. Some of them are totally free, the greater part has a trial version and several pricing plans, while others are quite expensive. Each application has its pros and cons, so it’s better to consult with a trusted testing software vendor to choose the one that really fits your needs. Although there’s no common rule in choosing the right tool for you, DogQ specialists can recommend you to pay attention to whether the tool involved in the automated regression test brings you the following benefits:
- It should increase people’s productivity: your QA team should work better and faster with this automation tool;
- It should minimize repetitive tasks: thus, engineers will have more time at building new complex test scenarios;
- Your employees should use it: it may sound ridiculous, but if your people don’t like it and continue to write tests manually, obviously it's a bad tool to choose.
You should also remember that any testing tool can never work without the right team culture and effective execution strategy upon codeless testing.
Why Choose DogQ for Regression Tests Automation Strategy
If compared to our competitors, we can enlist 5 ultimate DogQ advantages, which make it a top-market testing solution:
- It’s an easiest-to-use regression testing automation tool, that can fit both professionals and beginners. It has an intuitive user interface, which makes UI, e2e, regression, functional, and other types of web testing possible without writing a single line of code. You can run all the cases and scenarios simultaneously and manage them directly through a DogQ intuitive UI;
- DogQ uses computer vision powered by the OCR technology which makes it possible to find any text on the webpage, recognize it, and check websites and web apps with impressive efficiency and accuracy;
- It’s a cloud-based solution, which works ideally with cutting-edge frontend frameworks like React, Vue, and Angular. So, you can use it 24/7, from any device, without installing a desktop application;
- DogQ has an in-built real-time visual analytics feature, which greatly increases the transparency of testing operations and helps to track your project progress. Here a dashboard with key metrics, passed and failed tests, as well as free steps left is created automatically, with minimal human engagement;
- Our tool offers a great variety of pricing plans depending on the number of tests you need to perform and their frequency, which is especially important for small companies. Also, it has essential integrations like GitHub, CirceCI, and SemaphoreCI already integrated into its functionality, so you don’t need to pay more.
Choosing the right regression testing strategy and the fitting automated regression testing framework for this is a complex process, which depends on many individual peculiarities of the given project, application, and company. DogQ software testing specialists are always ready to answer your questions regarding regression testing strategies and tools. We can help you with choosing the right testing automation tool for your business or software project, as well as provide any additional technical support you need. Feel free to contact us and try our codeless testing platform!