Businesses across many sectors have included test automation in their digital transformation efforts. Test automation can generate many times the amount of time and effort. It is essential to set expectations with stakeholders and company owners to ensure that everyone is working toward the goal of success. Equally important are defining return expectations and interacting with clients.

What is Functional Testing?

Functional testing is a sort of software testing that verifies that the software system meets the functional requirements/specifications. These tests aim to analyze each software program function by supplying the proper input and comparing the resulting output to the Functional requirements.

Functional testing consists primarily of black-box testing and does not consider the application’s source code. This testing examines the User Interface, Application Programming Interfaces, Database, Security, Client/Server connection, and other tested features.

Types of Functional Testing

Several types of functional testing categories can be utilized depending on the situation. Here are the most common ones-

  • Unit testing is often conducted by a developer who produces related or unrelated code units to fulfill a specified capability. Typically, this involves building unit tests that contact the methods in each division and check that the needed arguments are supplied and the expected return value is returned.

Code coverage is a crucial aspect of unit testing where test cases must exist to cover the following three:

i) Line coverage

ii) Code path coverage

iii) Method coverage

  • Sanity Testing – To ensure the most critical and essential components of a program or system are working correctly, it is put through rigorous testing. This is usually the next step after a smoke test. It is called Sanity testing.
  • Smoke Testing – This Testing is performed after each build has been published to verify build stability. Also, it is referred to as build verification testing.
  • Regression Testing – This testing is conducted to verify that the addition of new code and bug fixes do not disrupt the current functionality or cause instability. The software still conforms to the requirements. Regression tests do not have to be as comprehensive as the actual functional tests, but they should guarantee sufficient coverage to ensure the functionality is reliable.
  • Integration Testing – Integration testing refers to the validation of end-to-end scenarios in which the system is dependent on numerous functional modules that may independently perform flawlessly but must function cohesively when combined to create the end-to-end plan.
  • Beta / Usability Testing – In a production-like setting, the product is tested in the presence of real consumers. The user’s comfort is determined, and feedback is collected from this. This is comparable to Testing for User Acceptance.

How Can Functional Test Automation Improve RoI?

Automated functional testing helps you overcome the bottlenecks in your software development journey. Here is how it can improve your RoI drastically –

  • Preserves and improves Reputation: When it comes to your application’s reputation, even a little flaw in the functionality may significantly impact the business. Negative reviews on the Play Store and the Software Store can damage the number of downloads your app gets and increase client acquisition expenses. Therefore, it is preferable to use software automation services that lessen the likelihood of developing a flawed product.
  • Reduces Time To Market: The duration of the development cycle is one of the most unaccounted-for costs in software development. The lengthier the time between discovering flaws in a software version and delivering patches, the longer it takes for the application to be released to the public. This feedback loop may be shortened, and product development life cycles accelerated with test automation.

Another critical point to evaluate is if the delay in the market entry has given a rival an edge in launching an app and gaining market share more quickly. In such situations, the expenses of a delay might force a firm out of existence.

  • Reliable Regression: Regression testing guarantees that the whole program functions flawlessly whenever a new feature or code is implemented. Manually doing these tests may be very time-consuming and have a poor return on investment (ROI) due to the low likelihood of identifying severe problems.

Due to coder weariness, there is also a possibility of human mistakes. Reliable regression testing may be performed without human labor and regularly using software testing technologies at a cheaper cost.

  • Earlier Bug Detection: Your application requires constant end-to-end testing in the development phase. Using Agile, shift-left, and DevOps, apps can be tested early in the development process. Functional test automation enables frequent testing of your code so that your team can find and understand issues early in the development process.

Due to early detection, your application will be free of defects, delays, and data blockages. This saves time so that your team doesn’t have to wait until the last stage to discover bugs, and they may be found in the early phases so they can go on the appropriate path. This saves time, effort, and money in application development, resulting in a higher ROI.

  • Controlled Testing Environment: In-house Testing is conducted in a controlled testing environment where applications are subjected to stress to determine their capacity and break-point. It enables you to test your application to the limit. It’s feasible to run your application through various situations to see how well it copes with stress. This increases your application’s reliability and scalability, increasing its marketability and resulting in a higher return on your investment.

Functional Testing Tools

These are some of the commonly used functional testing tools-

  • Selenium- A well-known open-source functional testing instrument.
  • QTP- An easy to use a functional testing tool by HP
  • JUnit– Primarily used for Java applications and may be used for Unit and System testing
  • Appium- Businesses that require testing Android and iOS mobile applications use an open-source functional testing tool. This tool is compatible with various programming languages, including Java, Python, Ruby, and PHP.
  • soapUI- An open-source functional testing tool used chiefly for Web service testing. Multiple protocols are supported, including HTTP, SOAP, and JDBC.
  • Watir- This is a tool for evaluating web applications’ functionality. It utilizes the Ruby programming language and provides browser-based testing.

Best Practices for functional testing

Your functional testing planning needs to be strong if you want the highest ROI. Do these practices for the best results-

  • Identifying what needs to be automated first: You should be aware that items in one setting may not function in another. When determining what to automate, you must also consider the program under test, environment, hardware requirements, and possible consequences.
  • Specialized Automation Group: Automation requires time, effort, and, most importantly, specialized expertise and skill-set. Not every member of your QA team may be proficient in building automation scripts or using automation technologies. Before installing automated tests, assess the varying degrees of expertise and experience of your QAs. It is optimal to assign automation tasks to those capable of doing them.
  • Data-Driven Tests: Test cases that involve numerous data sets should be created to be reusable. For this purpose, the data may be stored in XML, text, or property files or retrieved from a database. Creating a data structure for automation makes it simpler to maintain the framework. It also permits more efficient use of current test scripts.
  • Be on the alert for test-related breaks: Your test cases and automation tool of choice must be adaptable to possible UI changes. Consider an instance in which an older version of Selenium identified page items using a location. If the UI changes and these pieces are no longer in these positions, this may result in widespread test failures. Consider developing test cases that need slight modification in the event of UI modifications.
  • Test recurrently: Prepare a simple automation test bucket and devise a plan for its normal execution. With this, QA professionals may strengthen the test automation framework. This method also helps in identifying additional bugs.


Functional testing is a critical component of software testing methodology. It ensures a system performs precisely in real-time. Only money is not the last thing in ROI. When a product suppresses the client’s expectations, that’s the best ROI.

Since functional testing is conducted from the user’s viewpoint, it leads to creating a high-quality product. It satisfies client needs and simplifies the lives of both developers and business executives at the same time.