airfocus-logoGlossary
About airfocus

Try for free

Functional Testing

Contents
airfocus eBook All You Need To Know About Product Management
Get our All You Need To Know About Product Management eBook
Read now

What is functional testing?

💬

Functional testing definition

Functional testing verifies that the entire software system correctly meets the functional requirements that are defined as success parameters. In short: does the product do what it is meant to do?

Functional testing is a largely black-box exercise where outputs are confirmed as correct or identified as incorrect given the inputs provided. There is little attention paid to underlying processes — only to whether the outputs match the requirements.

It’s this clear nature — where inputs and expected outputs result in passed or failed tests — that makes functional testing an ideal use case for automated testing.

Functional testing is most often used to catch bugs or edge cases in a digital product. It is useful to have an independent test team so that assumptions and biases are not passed on.

abstract/prioritize emoji

Get our Agile: Best Practices and Methodologies eBook

This ebook offers an in-depth look into what Agile is, how it benefits product managers specifically, some popular Agile frameworks and the best practices.

Get the eBook

Functional testing types and examples

Below are 5 types of functional testing types and examples that can be used in product management.

  • Smoke testing: Makes sure that critical behavior can be completed successfully. i.e. Testers confirm that users can log on to an app and retrieve their details with no failures.

  • Sanity testing: Makes sure that bug fixes or new functionality react as expected within the system. For example, if search results using a hashtag initially caused the system to return no results, then after the fix is applied testers run multiple unscripted tests on the search with hashtags and similar symbols to check behavior.

  • Regression testing: Scripted and usually automated, these tests are rerun for every build of a product to ensure new components don't break old functionality. Each time there is a new build, the same test is run to ensure users can still log in and retrieve their details correctly.

  • API testing: Ensures API hooks, integrations, and security are working correctly within a digital product.

  • UI Testing: For functional testing, testers confirm that all UI components work as expected, and can be accessed by the user. This is crucial for user-centric product design.

Functional vs non-functional testing vs unit testing

Unit testing is a subset of functional testing. It’s worth defining unit testing separately because of its ongoing nature in development and concentration on white-box testing. Unit testing is performed throughout development to confirm that isolated components are working correctly.

Once all the components are integrated, product teams can move to integration and system testing (two more examples of functional testing types to add to our list above).

The last area of testing is non-functional testing. After verifying that the product fulfills its functional purpose, non-functional testing focuses on more qualitative measures like speed, performance, reliability, and scalability of the system. These tests are completed after functional testing to tell how well the system has met its objectives and decide whether it needs optimization.

During development, unit testing, functional testing, and non-functional testing should all be utilized.

abstract/prioritize emoji

Get our Agile: Best Practices and Methodologies eBook

This ebook offers an in-depth look into what Agile is, how it benefits product managers specifically, some popular Agile frameworks and the best practices.

Get the eBook

General FAQ

What is functional testing?
Functional testing verifies that a software system does what it is meant to do.

Cut through the clutter of
PM Content with our
bi-weekly digest

airfocus coin
Top rated
on major review platforms
g2 badge users love us
g2 badge leader fall
GetApp badge category leader
software advice badge
capterra shortlist badge
proddy badge roadmapping
crozdesk badge
Company
All rights reserved. contact@airfocus.com
ENDE