Beginner’s guide to API Testing
Source – Redhat
In today’s day and age, interconnected applications and devices have become a critical part of our daily lives. Whether you are managing your accounts through a digital wallet or controlling your security system through a mobile device, this software can streamline day-to-day operations and boost overall productivity in your personal and professional life.
When you use these applications and devices, this interconnectivity works seamlessly. Its ease-of-use requires rigorous programming at the back-end, which relies on an application programming interface (API). An API allows user flexibility, customizes the user experience through application layers, and automates workflows, i.e. automatically publishes content.
If you own an application and want it to connect with other programs and devices securely, it’s critical to have a functioning API in place. With this in mind, modern developers and publishers make it a point to include API testing in their programming roadmap.
To help you learn what API testing is and how it works, here’s a breakdown of the process and its steps. In understanding API testing’s inner workings, you can capitalize on its benefits such as its protective abilities, time efficiency, and cost-efficiency.
What is an API?
An API (Application programming interface) typically comprises the definitions and protocols of an application. Through this information, the application can explain its functionality and connectivity details without detailing its implementation.
When utilized by an application, this API essentially summarizes what section of its features work with other programs, what kind of bridges it allows for inter-application communication, and the type of connections it supports between different programs and devices.
An API allows developers to absorb critical information about the application without reading through the entirety of the codebase. This way, these developers can quickly develop new programs that are compatible with the application in question. An API also allows these tech experts to establish new connectivity features within existing third-party applications.
As a result, an API not only extends an application’s functionality but also allows it to communicate with other applications and devices with the user’s permission. For instance, the usage of API protocols can help you connect your asset trading account with an automated bot, without sharing confidential login information.
What does API testing do?
Before conducting the API testing process, it’s critical to evaluate an application’s accuracy before releasing it to the general public. That’s where API testing comes in. By employing scrupulous API testing mechanisms, you can verify that your application can connect to other products and services without any lapses in functionality or usability.
This form of testing also explores compliance with your application’s overall security to ensure that third-parties cannot gain unauthorized access to your application by manipulating poorly-protected validation and authentication endpoints. By performing API testing, you can also ensure that your application can deliver a seamless experience to its users without compromising their safety. This step is especially important for financial applications such as those based on blockchain technology, which use APIs to selectively share components of users’ confidential data with their permission.
As a result, API testing helps you verify your application’s performance, security, and confidentiality aspects. By testing your application’s strength and efficiency, you can protect your company from unforeseen complications such as less-than-satisfactory user experience or unexpected data breaches.
How does it work?
Since API testing is a highly detailed and intensive step in the software development process, only experienced professionals should perform this type of testing for optimal results. You can have your in-house developers do it for you or hire an external team to complete an objective review of your API.
When executed by an experienced team, the testing process thoroughly inspects your API and determines if you’re effectively explaining definitions and routines for your other developers. API testing also ensures that your product or service can perform in an ideal manner when connected with other applications.
For optimal results, developers organize the testing process into multiple stages.
Automated testing includes a computerized assessment of your API to examine how well it performs under standard usage.
Security testing overviews your API’s security aspects and associated flaws to help you analyze its overall safety. By detecting potential threats, it can prevent security breaches that can diminish the value of your application.
Performance testing puts your API to the test in terms of application interconnectivity and real-world usage. By splitting your API testing into different aspects, you can move forward with an agile approach and dedicate your focus to your API’s most flawed areas. This step in API testing will help you guarantee customer satisfaction in your application’s critical aspects, such as your customer’s online safety.
Modern testing mechanisms ensure an optimal user experience
If your product or service requires you to interact with multiple applications, it’s imperative to have a robust API and a meticulous API testing process in effect. These thorough testing processes help you eliminate any vulnerabilities in your application and ensures you deliver an optimal user experience to your target audience.