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An application programming interface is a piece of software that lets applications and services interact with each other. They provide the interface that facilitates data and logic transfer among diverse hardware Follow-the-sun and software systems. Testing automation is a business decision, and that is why you need to consider all the aspects of automated API tests. Every project is different, and its testing requirements are unique.

best practices for api testing

They should be configurable to run in any of your working environments under different configurations and provide a clear picture for each of them with a split report. If possible — the results of the failure should be saved and accessible in the system so that data can be tracked back. In 2002, software bugs cost the United States economy approximately $59.5 billion. Virtualization — This enables the simulation of the behavior of complex components, including back-end database connectivity and transport protocols other than HTTP. Moreover, the results of any failure must be saved and accessible in the system so that data can be traced back. Before adding tests, make sure to create a client for your system under test. Headers — This is to set a header such as content type JSON depending on the needs of the organization.

There is no GUI availableto test the application that makesit difficult to give inputs. Create test cases for all possible API input combinations to get complete test coverage. Perform stress testing on the system through a series of API load tests. Second, any of these elements doesn’t function, as it should such as the buttons are not clickable and you cannot select the options. You will have to verify thousands of combinations of inputs and scenarios.

Response Time

Destructive testing is a deeper form of negative testing where we intentionally attempt to break the API to check its robustness . Integrating automated tests into our CI process is key to producing stable and streamlined deployments. Staging and production builds get rejected if the automated tests fail. By building and maintaining repository templates, team members have our automated test best practices in place out of the box.

best practices for api testing

Another scenario is when the component holds unusable or insufficient test data. Alternatively, the component might be ready, but it is shared with other teams, so testers cannot use it freely. Smoke testing the API also involves verifying whether the API interacts with other application components as well as APIs as desired. Simulating API transactions in a test would therefore involve testing the supported authentication methods. The three most common authentication methods used in REST APIs are basic authentication, API keys, and OAuth. An effective approach would be using Loadmill to test different methods using different parameters in the API test flow as shown below. Typically, users execute a series of actions that can be viewed as flows.

What Are The Benefits Of Api Testing?

Technically, OAuth is not only an authentication method but also for authorization purposes. After running the API test, Loadmill returns detailed information showing the results for all HTTP requests in the test case. They appear just below the response status line and contains a fairly limited set of entities as shown below. When working with APIs, it is important to test whether your HTTP requests are working as desired in the API call.

API security testing: Key tool trends—and pro tips to stay a step ahead – TechBeacon

API security testing: Key tool trends—and pro tips to stay a step ahead.

Posted: Mon, 12 Jul 2021 07:00:00 GMT [source]

To support enhanced test automation collaboration, mabl introduced the activity feed. API tests can be performed at the early stage of the software development lifecycle. An automation approach with mocking techniques can help verify API and its integration before the actual API is developed. Knowing the purpose of the API will set a firm foundation for you to well prepare your test data for input and output. For example, for some APIs, you will verify the responses against the database; and for some others, it is better to verify the responses against other APIs. API is a computing interface which enables communication and data exchange between two separate software systems. Software system that executes an API includes several functions/subroutines that another software system can perform.

Start With The Small Apis

Extraction is particularly helpful when you need to generate dynamic content for subsequent requests, for instance, cookie values or access tokens. API testing usually involves testing many other interconnected components in an application. However, there are times that some components required for complete API testing may not be available dues to some unavoidable reasons.

Integration/Interoperability Testing comes into play for connections with third-party applications to make sure you and your business partners can properly exchange data sets. You can also test to ensure external applications without proper credentials do not have access. Once the testing process is completed, you can get the result of those tests every day. If failed tests occur, you can check the outputs and validate issues to have proper solutions. The responses can be in plain text, a JSON data structure, an XML document, and more. They can be a simple few-word string , or a hundred-page JSON/XML file. Hence, it is essential to choose a suitable verification method for a given API.

Test Cases For Api Testing:

There are also a few best-practices to be aware of that can guide you in your conversations with potential partners and help you get a sense of who knows their stuff. For example, at the beginning of your program, identify the requirements of the testing. This includes the API’s purpose, the workflow of the application, and where the API sits in that workflow. This step helps you define the verification approach and prepare your test data for input and output.

Provide the consumer with a file and instructions on how to test your API. A sample of your API documentation should be provided so that the end-user can test your API. You can ask your customers to test the API by clicking a link in your email campaign. As a result, testers can optimize the workflow and save time due to the uniformity of the test case execution through the master script. Gartner, 75% of organizations that monitor their IaaS/PaaS environments will leverage cloud-based APIs to consume metrics.


With the increasing attack extent of APIs, a multi-faceted security testing strategy is crucial to confirm you’ve designed the acceptable level of security into your application. Following the test matrix above should generate enough test cases to keep us busy for a while and provide good functional coverage of the API. Passing all functional tests implies a good level of maturity for an API, but it is not enough to ensure high quality and reliability of the API.

  • However, there are times that some components required for complete API testing may not be available dues to some unavoidable reasons.
  • With the increasing attack extent of APIs, a multi-faceted security testing strategy is crucial to confirm you’ve designed the acceptable level of security into your application.
  • API consists of set of classes/functions/procedures which represent the business logic layer.
  • REST APIs also decouple the client and server, ensuring independent evolution.

Parasoft helps organizations continuously deliver quality software with its market-proven, integrated suite of automated software testing tools. Also set up a sandbox that mimics the development environment so you can test API requests against simulated responses. And be sure to test all API endpoints by applying unit and functional testing to verify endpoint hits and expected responses. For these tests, error reporting and monitoring tools will help you analyze traffic to identify trends in service spikes. Whenever possible, we attempt to create automated test solutions and when necessary follow-up with exploratory manual solutions.


We then use this identifier to check if this resource is present in the list of elements received by a GET request. api testing best practices Then we use a PATCH endpoint to update new data, and we again invoke a GET request to validate the new data.

#2 Approach For Test Automation

For example, error codes in the 400 to 500 range imply problematic APIs or web service providers. Note that synthetic monitoring isn’t meant to measure the consumption rate, since it emulates individual transactions instead of monitoring the aggregated volume of transactions.

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