Automation testing is a critical component of software quality assurance (QA). By running various automated tests, testers can automatically ensure that their software is working correctly.
Automated testing is a top priority in software testing, providing:
- Increased testing coverage
- Higher feedback speed,
- Quality improvement.
However, selecting a test automation tool can be challenging since over 200 open-source and paid tools are in the market.
This article aims to provide a data-driven benchmark of the top 10 testing tools to help business leaders in their selection process.
What are test automation tools?
Test automation tools use automated test scripts to validate the software’s functional and/or non-functional components. They can be used to develop and execute automated tests and ensure testers’ access to the results at the appropriate stage of the building process or after the product launch.
Top 7 key Features for automation testing tools
We have identified the seven key features of automated testing tools and explained why each is critical:
Figure 1: Test Automation Tool Features
1. API testing
In 2020, 40%1 of API users reported API breakages, raising the need for an automated API testing solution that brings:
- Faster development: API testing can be done in the early stages of development to detect errors. While a company needs more than a day to run the same 3000 GUI tests, the same number of API tests may be completed in about an hour.
The survey results of 400 leading digital enterprises across industries show that manual testing is the most time-consuming activity in the software development cycle.2 The same survey shows that businesses’ top priority in their testing cycle is moving from manual to automated testing.3
2. Web testing
Automated web testing is an essential part of an automation testing tool, as 45% of firms are expected to carry out their testing using automation technologies.4 Benefits of automated web testing include:
- Eliminating compatibility issues: The application is tested for different browser and operating system combinations during web testing to avoid compatibility problems.
- Improved user experience: Web applications that have undergone web testing has been found to be error-free in terms of color, font size, UI element functionality, ease of navigation, and other aspects, as well as meeting the client’s needs.
- Increased performance speed: Web application testing helps remove several bugs and errors that would otherwise slow down the application’s performance and makes it operate more smoothly.
3. Mobile testing
Mobile app testing should be considered a key feature for automation testing tools, given the prevalence of mobile apps:
- 7.4B people were estimated to use smartphones in 2022.
With a mobile app testing feature, a test automation tool will help businesses achieve the following:
- Enhanced user satisfaction: A smooth user experience is made possible via mobile testing by optimizing apps for mobile-OS combinations that are common among the target population.
- Increased customer loyalty and market reputation: A well-designed app can increase market reputation and customer loyalty.
- Minimized risk: QA engineers can evaluate the overall app experience by automated testing and looking at applications from the user’s perspective. They can investigate the application’s logic and confirm that it is clear and easy to understand.
4. Desktop Testing
In contrast to cloud-based web apps, desktop programs need on-premise hardware to run. Because specific desktop applications (e.g., Rosetta Stone, Thunderbird) are made for particular settings and contexts (e.g., language learning, mail management), they are more challenging to test and ensure they are working correctly.
Benefits of automated testing tools for desktop apps include:
- Improved functionality: It ensures that every button and function performs precisely as it should, avoiding errors and unexpected results when users use the application.
- Security: It guarantees that all sensitive data (passwords, user information, transaction history, etc.) is encrypted, and the database replies with an accurate output when requested.
- Usability: It examines whether the application is efficient and equipped to handle the requests of the target audience.
- Stability: It ensures that the app runs without bugs on Windows, Linux, Mac OS, and other platforms.
5. Performance testing
Performance testing is often used to assess a system’s responsiveness and stability under a particular workload. With performance testing automation, businesses can verify the quality attributes of their product, such as scalability and reliability.
Performance testing involves functional testing, which is the backbone of quality assurance. This is a key feature for test automation platforms as it:
- Verifies the software’s core capabilities
- Analyzes the software’s responsiveness, precision, and stability
- Boosts load capacity and optimization so organizations can handle large user volumes by measuring performance.
6. Static code analysis
Static checkers, or static code analysis, are often used by programmers to troubleshoot programs without running them. It tries to prevent common errors and pitfalls.
This allows it to find vulnerabilities in even the code’s most remote and unattended parts. Test automation tools should include this feature as It helps businesses to:
- Ensure code uniformity
- Enforce code documentation
- Identify security issues
7. Low code
No-code or codeless automated testing has a record and playback design. So using it doesn’t require extensive coding and programming knowledge. According to a survey of 3,300 IT professionals, 66% of respondents preferred codeless platforms to accelerate digital transformation and improve responsiveness to business objectives.5
Low-code test automation tools can:
- Accelerate development by 5 to 10 times
How to determine other key criteria for best test automation vendors?
Different vendors offer over 200 hundred test automation tools. We applied two publicly-verifiable parameters to narrow down the number of vendors we analyzed:
- Number of Employees: We see that a company’s revenue correlates with the number of employees. Thus we focus on companies with 30+ employees.
- References: We focus on vendors with proven success. The vendors we analyze should have references and positive feedback from industry-leading companies or have at least one Fortune 500 reference.
We selected the following automation testing tools for our analysis based on the above-mentioned parameters. We ranked them according to the number of employees that the vendors have (except Testifi, see the transparency statement below). Be advised that all have at least one reference. But the exact number is not a factor in the ranking since it’s not possible to tally all the references.
Numerous emerging tech companies, including Testifi, are sponsors of AIMultiple. This is why Testifi is ranked first on our list despite not having the most employee size.
Below, you can see a table showing the features of these test automation tools. During our research, we did not have the scale to test all the test automation tools ourselves, so we included the features of these automation tools based on the vendor’s claims.
Figure 2: Test Automation Tools Feature Comparision
What capabilities do the top 10 test automation platforms provide?
1. Testifi CAST
Testifi’s CAST is a test automation tool that provides all seven key features covered in this article.
It can provide API, web, mobile, desktop, and performance testing with static code analysis.
One of its distinctive features is that it is a tool with a low-code approach, which also favors businesses that aim to reduce dependency on hard-to-hire technical skills. Industry leaders such as BMW use Testifi’s services. CAST additionally offers:
- Code validation and improvement
- Shift left and test first
- Built around existing toolchain
Check out this video to get a glimpse of their offerings:
2. Micro Focus UFT One
Micro Focus UFT One is an AI-powered functional testing tool that accelerates end-to-end testing. It works across desktop, web, mobile, mainframe, composite, and packaged enterprise-grade applications. It additionally provides
- Front-end and back-end testing
- Managing API testing
- Integration with DevOps Toolchain
Micro Focus UFT One’s review rating is currently at 4.0/5.0 based on more than 90 reviews on Gartner’s Peer insights.6
Micro Focus gives a detailed guide to their test automation tool UFT One, in this video:
Postman claims that their service is used by 98% of the Fortune 500.7
Postman’s test automation platform is an API testing tool that makes it simple to build automated tests. The platform focuses on API testing. The user can combine the tests and requests into a single automated test sequence.
It can be integrated with CI/CD tools and provides an easy-to-use interface. The features of Postman include:
- Create test suites
- Automatically share collaborative projects with peers.
- Use the ‘Snippets’ list in the ‘Postman app’ to test APIs.
Postman API platform’s rating is currently at 4.6/5.0 based on over 470 reviews on Gartner’s Peer Insights.8
4. Tricentis Tosca
Tricentis Tosca is a low-code platform offering API, web, and desktop testing. It can be integrated with Jira, GitHub, and Jenkins. Some of its features are:
- Codeless test creation with a model-based approach
- Parallel and Cross-platform testing
- Risk-based test optimization
- Service virtualization
- Test data management
- API Scan
Tricentis Tosca received a rating of 4.4/5.0 based on over 120 reviews.9
You can see a demo of Tricentis Tosca in this video:
Browserstack’s test automation platform can be integrated with CI/CD tools such as Jenkins, Azure Pipelines, and GitHub Actions. The platform offers web and mobile testing. It specifically focuses on cross-browser testing and offers the following features:
- Parallel test runs
- Integration with languages and frameworks via CI plugins
- Network simulation
- Instant access to selenium grid
- Can produce location-based scenarios from 60+ countries around the world using secure, private IPs
Browserstack received a rating of 4.5/5.0 based on over 80 reviews.10
The following video shows how to run selenium tests on the cloud with Browserstack.
6. Smart Bear SoapUI
SoapUI is a test automation platform for API testing. While it has an open-source version, it also has a more advanced paid version. Smartbear’s SoapUI can run and analyze complex tests on:
- REST and SOAP APIs,
- JMS, JDBC, and other web services.
The features also include the following:
SoapUI received a rating of 4.5/5.0 based on over 156 reviews.11
Check the following video for a demonstration of functional testing using SoapUI.
Parasoft provides web, desktop, and API testing. Parasoft’s test automation platforms additionally provide the following features:
- Continuous testing.
- Unit testing
- API security testing
- Web UI testing.
- Safety-Critical Testing
- Static Code Analysis
Parasoft received a rating of 4.7 based on over 160 reviews. It is one of the test automation platforms that provides the key features covered in this article.12
Check their video regarding how they work and what they aim to bring to the table:
8. Idera Xray
Idera Xray is a test management platform specifically designed for Jira users. Xray’s REST API and native integrations allow users to build a CI/CD pipeline seamlessly. It offers:
- Jira-native experience
- Detailed traceability reports
- Requirements linked to test cases
- Native BDD support
- Integrate with test automation frameworks: Cucumber, Robot Framework, Jenkins, JUnit
Check their quick-demo video to see the most important features of Xray
It additionally features:
- Parameterized Testing
- Interception of network traffic
- Parallel test execution
- Hierarchical View
- Cross-browser compatibility
Cypress test automation platform received a rating of 4.7/5.0 based on over 64 reviews.13
Selenium is an open-source automation testing tool explicitly focused on web testing. It contains a vast library of add-ons, plugins, and extensions. Selenium can:
- Execute cross-browser and parallel testing.
- Be integrated with testing frameworks and CI/CD tools.
- Support multiple programming languages and execute tests parallel to Selenium Grid.
While Selenium lacks technical support considering that it is a free tool, it is still one of the most widely popular open-source frameworks for its particular use. It received a rating of 4.5/5.0 based on over 400 reviews, which makes it one of the most popular tools for web testing in our list. 14
If you have a specific question about vendors, reach us:
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