6 Best Practices to Conduct Application Performance Testing
Since the introduction of software applications, application performance testing has been popular and active. You may think of it as critical software development and IT function that has mostly been self-contained. Application performance testing is the go-to choice for a business to acquire quality and financial credibility in the market sector.
However, there are some hazards that might emerge from the shadows and steal the spotlight, causing a big commotion. To effectively manage such risks, the performance testing team must properly address a number of scenarios and queries. For example, “Will the app perform as expected?” or “How will the app operate in different circumstances?” Understanding the performance characteristics of the target application takes care of such difficulties.
The approach is to prioritize performance concerns within your testing environment. Hence, you must look into issues affecting application performance by focusing on system functioning under stress. Further, the use of application performance management (APM) technologies that replicate production scenarios, do give a better insight into app functionality and overall performance under notable stress or load.
Let’s start with an overview of application performance testing before moving on to best practices.
What is Application Performance Testing?
For an enterprise or organization to direct maximum users to their application, it is essential for the app to work smoothly. Therefore, the company works to ensure that the application’s performance fulfills expectations, and this is carried out by mimicking the conditions and workloads they expect their apps will face during the production phase. Ultimately, the performance is tested as per those replicated conditions and workloads.
On a broader front, application performance testing is an exquisite function that helps to deliver quantitative answers to questions related to the scalability, stability, and responsiveness of an application versus its expectations.
Best Practices for Application Performance Testing
Here we will discuss a few best practices for planning and implementing a well-structured application performance testing scheme. It is a merger of old-fashioned and contemporary approaches that directly replicates the elemental changes in the global IT settings.
1. Invest in a DevOps Approach
IT businesses realized the need to combine development and IT operations activities shortly after the minimalist movement influenced Agile. As a result, the DevOps methodology emerged, in which developers and IT professionals collaborate to conceive, produce, and deliver software applications. To be clear, DevOps should specifically involve developers, testers, and IT operations functioning together to carry out performance tests against the final product as a team.
2. Test Early and Frequently
Performance testing is sometimes a throwaway, which is carried out in a rush at a later stage in the development cycle. But the actual method should be handled in a pro-active manner. For this, consider an agile strategy that employs iterative testing throughout the development life cycle. Moreover, permit performance unit testing to be part of the development process and later repeat the similar tests on a wider scale across subsequent stages to analyze the application preparation or maturity.
3. Utilize the Batch of Available Tests
If you take a look around, there is a growing trend where DevOps and IT teams associate performance testing and load testing. The convenience here lies in the fact that more data intelligence is always a safer bet, especially when the teams are working towards expanding their programming approach. Here is a list of effective tests which come in handy.
Load tests– You can see them as volume tests as they generate traffic volumes that are similar to those found in real-world production situations. After then, the loads are directed at the application that is being tested. Simulating demand on a software application or resource indicates how the app will behave under certain conditions in advance.
Spike tests – These allow teams to see how their apps will perform when they are under the most stress. It’s important for a business to determine how effectively their app can manage extraordinarily large numbers of daily visitors and transaction rates.
Stress tests – These tests evaluate how much the software can withstand, the ultimate limit, before breaking and failing. It can further be used to determine a system’s capacity. You perform a stress test with increasing loads until the quality requirements are breached.
Soak tests – Such tests are intended to simulate large traffic loads with extended periods. They demonstrate how software apps perform in the face of continued high demand that includes large transaction rates, numerous concurrent users, etc. You can view these tests as effective in detecting issues such as memory leaks which only appear over a long stretch of time.
4. Perform System Performance Tests
Many different complicated systems, such as databases, web services, application servers, legacy systems, and etc, make up modern applications. All of these systems must be separately and collectively performance evaluated. This assists in exposing weak links, determining which systems negatively influence others, and determining which systems to segregate for additional performance optimization.
5. Keep the Users in Mind
The performance of servers and networks executing software is frequently the only target of performance testing. Remember that humans use software, therefore performance testing should include a human component. The user experience should be considered throughout tests; also, user interface-time should be recorded alongside server data.
Consistently Reporting & Result Analysis
Design and execution of performance tests are critical, but so are test reports. Reports inform everyone in your company, especially project managers and developers, on the outcomes of your application’s activity. Consistently analyzing and reporting results aids in the development of future fixes. The developer reports need to be distinct from the ones provided to project managers, owners, and corporate executives.
In an actual sense, the best way to carry out application performance testing is through precise planning and upfront scheduling. Make sure you test often and add-on maximizes the testing of all elements together and separately on an end-to-end basis.
For better consultation regarding application performance testing and its implementation for your software products, you can feel free to contact ImpactQA at all times!