api challenges

Challenges in API Testing

  • API Testing, Business, Quality
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  • Qapitol QA

The growth of our generation is ushered by technology and innovation. Technology and business development are two aspects that have intertwined beyond recognition into one significant character-defining success. Application Programming Interface (API) is an integral component of mobile and web-based applications that integrate the digital services offered by organizations.

Companies and organizations offering API services perform rigorous testing and evaluation of various parameters that influence the functioning of API systems. Organizations are adopting API testing to attract new customers and offer quality API systems to their clients. There is a sharp increase in the number of companies that have taken up API testing operations in a span of three years from 2014 to 2019 by 59% in the last 5 years and 28% in the last two years. Dedicated teams are assigned for API testing and it is performed by manual tools or automation. API testing is a strenuous process that demands focus and hard work to design bug-free, highly efficient API systems. Here are a few challenges faced in API Testing.

Setting Up of API

API testing can be done either manually or by automating the tests to evaluate various components and parameters of the working framework. It is a strenuous task and it involves a great deal of hard work and time to build up the foundation of API systems.

Implementation of API systems also requires extensive testing of data input and output systems to ensure that proper communication channels are established between the different levels of the applications. API systems can be designed for public interactions, internal evaluations or both. 76% of the organizations develop both internal and public-facing API, 21% develop only internal API’s while 3% of organizations develop public API systems.

The API has to be categorized into ones that require frequent evaluations and ones that need to be tested only periodically. Automation of the ones which require frequent evaluations saves time and resources and yield great results in the long run. All factors such as the cost of setting up API Testing, speed of processing and efficiency of testing should be considered before implementing API testing processes.

Regular Updation of API Schema

API systems are constantly changing and designers keep improvising to new versions of API as and when they update the applications by adding new features to it. The interaction between the API and User Interface(UI) need to be understood clearly to optimize automation of API testing. API systems act as fine threads that weave together the multi-layered structure of applications to integrate their functions and perform efficiently.

Design teams need to evaluate the data formatting that handles requests and responses for API and maintain it properly. Studies show that 60% of organizations develop API systems to facilitate interoperations between systems, teams and tools followed by the need to reduce development time 54% and many other requirements.

API systems act as data hubs collecting and regulating data and information between the back-end and front-end systems. Proper understanding of their function and understanding API call sequencing is essential to set up high-performance API systems.

Sequencing of API calls

The sequencing of API calls is a key factor that influences the efficiency of API systems. API systems need to execute functions in a specific order to produce desired results and any issues in this workflow affects the entire process. Processes are mapped out meticulously and charted in a particular sequence to produce the desired results most efficiently. Any inversion in the pre ascertained order will create huge consistencies that will compromise on the functioning of the applications leading them to crash.

API’s integrating with different applications and layers connected by multiple threads require greater focus and dedication to establish ideal sequences optimizing the workflow. These links need to be evaluated meticulously every time updates and new launches are done.

Validating Parameters

The data input and formatting in API systems occurs based on various parameters based on which they are designed. Testing teams have to validate the parameters sent through the API requests. The sheer number of parameters in the API’s and the use cases accompanying them make this a complicated task. Evaluating the parameters properly is of paramount importance as it plays a huge role in the functioning of the API systems and its workflow. Any irregularities in the parameters will lead to a collapse in the workflow of the API systems.

Incorporation of continuous synthetic API monitoring helps you identify any errors in the parameters of API systems. Quick validation of parameters reflects on the efficiency of API teams and the root cause behind any irregularity in the systems can be identified by implementing powerful Application Processing Management systems. A survey of the API companies has revealed that nearly 50% of them have incorporated efficient APM systems while others are gearing up to install them.

Tracking Feedback

Customer feedback regarding the performance of applications should be tracked regularly and the origin of the issues should be identified to modify appropriately. 63% of the issues identified are rectified in the first 24 hours with 18% of them handled within an hour. The key issues with issue handling are finding the origin of these issues in the vast and complex systems. Studies report that identifying the origin of the issue constitutes 60% of the difficulty in the process while isolating the API forms 47% and finding the appropriate technicians for rectifying the issue 31% difficulty in the process.

Huge applications with multiple platforms and components require a huge amount of time and resources to evaluate and modify based on feedback. These applications benefit greatly from automated testing and unit testing of modules before integrating as a system. The reputations of companies are on the line when API systems do not perform efficiently in applications. Studies have revealed that 48% of companies perceive the greatest potential risk of failed API systems as the profound impact it has one the reputation of the company.

Conclusion

Companies are coming into the realization that API testing is a top priority and are investing in this sector. Studies show that 91% of companies have or plan to have a formal API testing system incorporated soon. It is essential to establish efficient API testing systems in organizations to maximize the performance of API systems and build a strong reputation to attract new clients. Begin your transition to automated API testing systems and optimize your work process to overcome the challenges posed by API testing.

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Author: Qapitol QA