manual functional testing

Let us begin by understanding what manual functional testing is all about and how it can prove to be useful for you.

Functional testing is that type of testing that will search to establish if each of your application’s features is working as per the requirement of your software. The testing will compare each function with its corresponding requirement and will ensure that the final output is as per the requirement of the end user. At the end of the functional testing, your software would have a coherent user interface along with a consistent API as well as it would integrate with business processes seamlessly. 

Functional testing can be done both manually as well as through automation. There are several reasons why manual functional testing has been found to be indispensable: 

  • There are some tests, especially those which require an understanding of user experience, which must only be conducted manually.
  • Automated testing is not a substitute for manual testing and is only for supporting human testers.
  • Many bugs are hidden in unexpected locations and need manual testers to uncover them.
  • Most bugs are hidden in unexpected places
  • For small-scale projects, manual testing is more budget-friendly

Types of Manual Functional Testing

 Unit Testing

It is the testing of the smallest functional as well as a testable unit of code. Manual software testing companies perform this testing in the early stages of development as it helps to discover defects during the initial phases. 

Some tools which are used for this testing are  Junit, Jtest, JMockit, NUnit etc.

Integration Testing

You will need to do this testing if you want to validate the interactions between two or more unit components. During this testing, the units of the software to be tested are integrated together and then tested. The testing is done to ensure there is no unexpected behavior observed during the integration. Also, processing of the communication of commands, DB calls, Micro-services etc. between the units is also tested during this testing. Some of the types of integration testing include:

  • Incremental
    • Top-Down Approach
    • Bottom-Up Approach
    • Hybrid Approach
  • Big-Bang

Interface Testing

This is a part of integration testing where the correctness of data transfer, messages, commands etc between two integrated components is tested.

System Testing

System Testing is a Black-Box testing technique which validates whether all components of the system are integrated. Also, the system is tested for correctness and compliance against the specifications, whether functional or system, required to be fulfilled.


Regression Testing

Regression Testing is run to ensure that the codes for enhancement or fixes that have been included later have not hampered the existing working functionalities or have created any new defect in the existing code. Regression testing is a subset of existing Functional Testing and covers the major functionalities of the system.

Smoke Testing

When a new build is released after a development is completed, smoke testing needs to be performed on the applications to ensure all the major functionalities are in their place. Once smoke testing is completed successfully, the application becomes ready for the next testing level.

Sanity Testing

While smoke testing is done to test an initial application after a new build, Sanity Testing is done after many releases once the product has already gained stability. Sanity Tests are selected from the Regression Test suite and cover the major functionalities of the application.

Acceptance Testing

Acceptance testing tests the acceptance of the application by the end user. The test aims at ensuring that the system that has been developed fulfills all requirements as per those agreed upon during business requirement creation. Acceptance testing is done after System Testing and also before the application is finally released to the market. Types of Acceptance Testing include: 

  • User Acceptance Testing
  • Business Acceptance Testing
  • Regulation Acceptance Testing

Common Myths of Manual Functional Testing

There are certain myths that have been there regarding manual functional testing. Let us debunk some of them.

  • Myth: Anyone can do manual functional  testing

Fact: manual functional  testing also requires many skill sets which need to be learned first

  • Myth: All functional test cases need to be automated.

Fact: Manual testing will have its importance as long as humans keep interacting with software applications. Also, 100% test automation cannot be done.

Myth: Manual functional testing is easy

    Fact: Manual functional testing can be extremely challenging and requires high analytical skills.

    • Myth: Manual testing is out-of-date

    Fact: Manual testing is the base of the QA process and helps in stabilising a product.

    Top Manual Testing Tools List

    Before we end, here are a few top manual testing tools which can be used for functional testing:

    • Selenium: One of the best testing tools with several benefits such as easy-to-use features,  specific languages for a domain etc.
    • SoapUI: This is the only open-source tool that covers the entire testing spectrum, including functional. Popular for its easy-to-use graphical interface. 

    Sauce Labs: This testing tool is all-inclusive and offers continuous cross-browser testing.

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