Quality teams need a software testing tech stack that enables them to meet the demands of a fast-paced development environment. Considering the amount of effort needed to buy and implement a new tool, quality leaders need to consider their options carefully.

Regression testing is a way to identify side effects from recent code changes that negatively impact existing features. As an application grows and becomes more complex, the risk of regressions and technical debt increases. Implementing a comprehensive software testing strategy using an automated regression testing tool can accelerate release cycles while preventing regressions.

Read on to learn about the automated software testing tools that will help your team build and scale an effective regression testing strategy.

Table of Contents

  • Building a Regression Testing Strategy
  • A Buyer's Guide to Automated Regression Testing Tools
  • Different Types of Automated Regression Testing Tools
  • How to Start Automated Regression Testing

Building a Regression Testing Strategy

When building a comprehensive testing strategy, quality teams will need to decide what tests to automate. Although it’s tempting to automate every manual test case, a combination of the two is often the best approach. Some tests, like exploratory testing are better suited to manual testing, while repetitive testing tasks are better suited for automation.

Manual Regression Testing versus Automated Regression Testing

Automated regression testing is more efficient than manual testing because regression tests will be re-run with each new build. It’s not practical to keep repeating the same tests manually, especially as an application grows in size and complexity. Instead, quality teams can write automated regression tests once, reducing testing time and accelerating release cycles.

A Buyer's Guide to Automated Regression Testing Tools

The "right" test automation tool is highly dependent on the needs of your development organization, QA team, and product. As you evaluate different testing tools, consider what test types are the most time-consuming and your long-term quality goals.

AI in Automated Regression Testing

Many automated testing tools are introducing AI and machine learning capabilities for test creation, maintenance, predictive analysis, and more. For example, AI can identify UI changes and automatically update test scripts, reducing manual maintenance requirements and improving test reliability. 

AI can also identify outdated or redundant test cases to optimize the test suite as the application evolves. In the coming years, AI/ML will likely increase test reliability, accelerate test runs, and otherwise improve software testing.

Different Types of Automated Regression Testing Tools

You can start evaluating automated regression testing tools once you have determined which tests to automate and how to harness AI. It’s important to consider whether a new tool can meet your regression testing requirements.

Here are some key features to look for:

  • Low-Code: Each new feature will require expanding your automated testing strategy. You'll also need to update existing tests to reflect UI changes or new business requirements. Low-code features for test creation and maintenance make it much easier to implement an automated regression testing strategy.
  • CI/CD Integrations: Out-of-the-box integrations with common DevOps tools will help your team adopt automated regression testing. Integrating automated testing tools into existing CI/CD pipelines makes it easier to run tests earlier in the development process.
  • Unlimited Test Infrastructure: When regression test suites grow larger, they can become a bottleneck if the testing infrastructure cannot scale effectively. A fast automated testing tool should provide unlimited parallel test runs using on-demand cloud resources.
  • In-depth Reports: Many testing tools only offer pass-fail test results, making it more difficult to triage issues. An effective regression testing tool should provide in-depth quality insights and regression trends.
  • Auto Healing: Over time, some test cases are no longer useful as UIs or product specifications change. A modern testing tool will reduce test maintenance by using machine learning to autoheal test cases and remove unnecessary tests.

Our guide will help you pick a testing solution that supports your quality goals and works with your tech stack.

What Types of Tests are the Most Time-Consuming

Inefficient software testing can slow development cycles and frustrate development teams. If repetitive tasks like end-to-end testing or regression testing are slowing testers, those tests are prime automation opportunities. 

Tests focused on popular user journeys are ideal for test automation since they're less likely to change with each release. Assuming that the basic application architecture is consistent, those tests are likely to remain relatively stable, minimizing possible maintenance. Buying a test automation tool that can reduce the burden of these test types can help QA teams quickly show ROI.

Test Coverage Needs and Goals

Test coverage is a tried-and-true measure of success for any software testing strategy. Establishing test coverage goals for regression testing is particularly useful for software development teams focused on improving their customer experience.

Consider how test coverage needs will change as your product and your customer experience evolve. Will your testing strategy need to include automated API testing? Will your team adopt non-functional quality standards? Understanding how an automated testing tool can mature with your automated regression testing strategy will help your team avoid tool sprawl.

Functional Testing versus Non-Functional Testing

Regression testing should include functional testing and non-functional testing to better reflect the user experience. Expanding automated tests to cover performance and accessibility issues, for example, will help prevent poor customer experiences without burdening your team.

How to Start Automating Regression Testing

Start automating regression testing by building a comprehensive testing strategy and choosing the right automated testing tool. Then your organization can integrate the tool into your existing development pipeline and begin creating an automated regression test suite. 

Adopt an intelligent test automation tool

Mabl is an intelligent, low-code test automation solution that makes it easy to adopt automated regression testing. Using a unified platform for holistic software testing, software teams can execute reliable browser, API, and mobile tests. This accelerates the delivery of high-quality, business critical applications.

Integrate Automated Testing into CI/CD pipelines

Mabl effortlessly integrates into your CI/CD pipeline, allowing software teams to run tests at any stage — including deployment and production. It integrates with popular DevOps tools to make it as easy as possible to start running automated tests.

Build a Comprehensive Regression Testing Suite

In addition, mabl’s intuitive user interface makes it easy for anyone to create, run, and manage complex regression test cases. Save time by quickly importing existing Selenium regression test suites instead of recreating test cases. By empowering anyone on your team to contribute to automated regression testing, mabl brings efficiency to the testing process.

Leverage AI to Create and Maintain Regression Tests

Using machine learning to detect UI changes, mabl can auto-heal tests and help testing teams plan new test cases. Mabl also uses AI to automatically tailor test timing to match the pace of an application, further improving test reliability. These intelligent features reduce the manual effort required for test creation and maintenance, saving time and money over the long term. 

Continuously Improve Regression Testing Using Data

After a test run, mabl provides rich diagnostic data to help software teams identify the source of issues. In-depth reports also help organizations identify regression trends across test runs and software builds. These additional insights help quality teams build an accurate understanding of application quality, unleashing continuous improvement across the software development lifecycle.

Ready to implement automated regression testing? Start a free trial to see if mabl is the right automated testing tool for your organization.