Software systems today are complex and made up of numerous subsystems. All those integrated pieces have to work together in order to ensure the application flow performs as expected, or you risk them failing. That risk can be avoided by end-to-end testing (E2E).
E2E testing ensures that applications behave as expected by focusing on the complete end-user workflow and simulating real-world scenarios. E2E testing has become very reliable and widely adopted because of its benefits. Let’s dive into some of them here.
Helps Achieve More Detailed Testing
End to End testing in software development has become another way to ensure the correctness of mobile applications. There are many testing methods that you can use to create a robust continuous integration practice. Nowadays, most developers only do unit testing to ensure the correct behavior of certain logic. However, you can and should do E2E testing to ensure the correctness of the app’s navigation flows.
From my experience with retail companies that have implemented E2E tests and those that haven’t, I’ve identified numerous benefits to those implementing the tests, ranging from faster deliveries and easy maintenance to more rapid bug detection.
Helps Identify Design Insufficiencies
Proper app design is positively connected to E2E testing. When your app has a good design, it makes completing E2E tests easier because you can set identifiers to the objects on your screens. Designing with good standards, best practices, and the best approach for your app can allow you to identify what objects, events, and gestures you need to track and define the scope of the E2E tests. With this, you know exactly how many objects are there and how many flows you can perform on each screen. This ability is helpful for you and the QA Engineers when performing automated tests.
Helps Define Use Cases
Identifying how many flows your app has is vital. Listing your app’s basic and specific flows will help you tackle those issues if someone breaks something.
For example, when you are a retail company, you have to ensure that the user can add the product to their shopping cart, see how much those products cost, make a checkout process and finally see the confirmation of the order.
With simple steps, flows, and defining use cases, you can easily define and follow a guideline to make E2E tests. For example, the login process is always the same, so you can define this flow and then use it in each flow that requires a user to log in.
Helps Prevent Errors and Detect Bugs
Let’s bring back the example of a retail company. Imagine that you are developing a new feature that modifies some core components of the shopping cart. This feature is complicated and must be developed in a few days.
While building the feature and modifying the code with the new requirements, you realize something is wrong with the shopping cart, because you can’t add products. So, you run the tests and realize that something has broken because you can’t complete the checkout process.
Imagine you brought this bug to your production environment, which could have translated into losing money for your company and your client. You would have had to come up with a fast solution for this bug in record time because of the harm it would cause.
And remember, when you are developing on mobile technologies, you have to upload a new app for the store, wait for the review process, and then if it’s good, you can proceed. But what happens if it’s not? Now, you have to wait until the revision process has finished, and you can’t do anything about it.
Managing this mishap would be timely and in this case, time is money. How much money and reputation would the app lose? It is important to remember that users can easily evaluate your app in the mobile environment. These kinds of problems, errors, bugs, etc., can be easily prevented when you utilize some of your time to develop E2E tests and make a process to run them before the release date of your app.
Helps Automate Critical User Paths
Over time, performing manual testing will become a chore. So, let’s automate the boring stuff. When you have the opportunity to implement a continuous integration and continuous deployment (CI/CD) pipeline, you must consider E2E tests as part of it. E2E tests are an excellent option because every time you make a pull request, the process is automated, and the only thing left for you to do is wait for the CI/CD response.
With this now in place, you can create more features more rapidly and forget about checking your code every time you finish developing something. Delegating some tasks to be automated is a must. By delegating some of the work to a CI/CD pipeline, you can keep developing, improving, and even planning what you will do next to create or maintain an effective business unit because the burden to perform those tests is no longer yours.
Remember the problems you can avoid by implementing automated end-to-end testing; bugs, loss of money and clients, etc. You can deliver more value to customers quickly if you ensure the app’s correct behavior. Making unit tests to check certain logic and E2E testing to check the whole process of your app is good practice.
Also, remember to delegate or create an automation process for checking your E2E tests and the unit tests. These solutions allow you to save time when you are developing. The ultimate goal is to deliver more value to your customers. E2E tests are easy to implement and will consume a small amount of your time, but the benefits are worth it.