Digital testing validates the quality of software applications based on certain pre-defined parameters. It comprises several types of testing such as functional testing, non-functional testing, manual testing, automated testing, and system testing.
Digital transformation, besides delivering superior customer experiences and other outcomes like increased productivity, efficiency, and lowering costs is ratcheting up competition among business enterprises as well. The transformation is enabled by innovations and developments around AI, big data analytics, social media, mobile, and the Internet of Things. In this digital ecosystem, quality has emerged as the most critical attribute in driving the adoption of products or services by the customers. Hence, to ensure the quality of any software product throughout the value chain, the product should be subjected to digital testing. In an omni-channel environment where customers are likely to use various device platforms, operating systems, browsers, frameworks, and networks, digital assurance testing validates the successful functioning of any software application.
Why has digital testing become a critical requirement?
With most businesses moving onto the digital bandwagon, consumers are in for a treat. They prefer to avail products or services from the convenience of their homes using smartphones or other digital devices rather than visiting the physical store. In fact, businesses have realized that the notion of customer satisfaction has shifted to a seamless and optimal digital experience from the usage of physical products per se. The tech-savvy and choosy customers of today do not bat an eyelid before moving away from a site or uninstalling an app if they find its digital experience to be below par. No wonder, digital assurance and testing have assumed greater significance in the overall scheme of things.
Earlier, selecting the target devices and platforms to conduct digital testing of a software application was relatively easy. However, today, the scenario has become much more complicated thanks to the availability of a plethora of device platforms, browsers, and operating systems. Further, due to the constraints of budget and time, enterprises cannot conduct digital QA testing covering every OS, browser, and device. They need to choose the type of digital quality assurance process, which is most relevant to their target customers, industry, and geography.
What are the types of digital testing?
To check whether the software application under development meets all the expected requirements, the digital QA testing process is broadly classified into 5 types:
Functional testing: In this type of digital QA testing the testers do not look into the application’s source code but verify if its functions perform as specified in the document listing the software requirements. Here, the individual functions are fed with inputs and then checked for outputs based on their functional requirements. The examples include unit testing, sanity testing, smoke testing, white box testing, black-box testing, regression testing, and user acceptance testing.
Non-functional testing: In this type of digital transformation testing, the testers check how well an application performs in various scenarios or conditions. It checks how the overall application operates instead of its specific functions in terms of parameters like scalability, performance, reliability, and others. The examples are performance testing, migration testing, stress testing, penetration testing, volume testing, compatibility testing, and others.
Manual testing: In this testing process, human testers write exclusive test cases and check their ‘pass’ or ‘fail’ status based on certain pre-defined parameters. It is time-consuming and prone to errors as human testers are not capable of checking test cases that are beyond a certain threshold. The examples of manual digital testing include functional testing, smoke testing, and sanity testing.
Automated testing: In this testing process, specific test automation tools run test cases (often written by AI-based software) based on pre-defined parameters to check if they ‘pass’ or ‘fail’. It is faster, accurate, and can be conducted without human intervention. In the Agile-DevOps driven software development ecosystem, automated testing forms an integral part. Certain repetitive tests like regression are suitable candidates for automated testing.
System testing: In this type of digital assurance testing, testers validate the whole software application in terms of its end-to-end system specifications. It allows them to validate the software architecture’s ability to meet the business requirements and verify if the software application is a fully functional product.
Since digital testing services can be disparate, time-consuming, and prone to errors, a Testing Centre of Excellence or TCoE can be established. The TCoE can serve as a repository of all testing tools, frameworks, and processes, which testers can leverage to undertake standardized testing. The digital testing solutions ensure the software applications work to their optimum and deliver the expected user experience.