Imagine being an intern or a student learning to test software products. Such a person has probably heard of end-to-end (E2E) testing. He or she may know that it has something to do with determining whether the characteristics of a minimum viable product are working well. Yet what are the fundamentals of end-to-end testing in more detail?

We answer this question, and many more, in this article. Use this resource to learn how to use end-to-end software testing for a minimum viable product.

What is end-to-end testing?

The simplest definition of end-to-end testing is to use software to test whether a software product is performing as it is supposed to. When all the pieces of software are put together, there is a high probability that one or more steps will fail.

As such, it is essential to perform end-to-end testing to ensure that a product is functioning properly. End-to-end testing assesses how well an entire application works against how a user would implement it in the real world.

But what is the end-to-end test (E2E) with regard to the aspects analyzed?

An E2E test will start the program in a browser and test every aspect of the program, from user interface and browser to hardware and third-party applications or integrations. Testing an entire application with an E2E test will help the programmer to eliminate any computer bugs that could damage the software product.

A manual E2E test can be performed where a human checks the system for any hiccups by clicking and viewing different program features. In addition, automated tests can also be performed when a machine tests for failures through pre-arranged validations.

Minimum definition of viable product

A minimum viable product is the most basic version of a product in which the user can access enough functionality to use the system and provide feedback to the designers of the software application. It includes basic functions without additional bells or whistles.

Developers often have multiple prototypes for their software products, which is why a minimum viable product is needed before designers and developers create a more complex system. Customer feedback on the most basic version of the product can help developers find out what consumers actually need and look for.

This allows them to create the perfect product for their customers.

A minimum viable product can be built using the build-measure-learn loop. Essentially, the design team can make a list of things they already know about their customers, and then get more details about their consumer base through a paper or online survey.

Once all survey responses are viewed, developers can then determine whether their assumptions were true or not. They can also discover new discoveries about their customers.

Learning these aspects from customers can help developers create a minimum viable product first and then develop that software system over time.

Examples of minimum viable products

When it comes to the examples of minimum viable products, it’s surprising to learn that Amazon was originally considered a minimum viable product. Amazon started out as an online bookstore where founder Jeff Bezos bought books through distributors and sent them to buyers whenever someone placed an order.

As book sales increased at Amazon, the company expanded by offering more items in the online store. Other warehouses have also been added. Finally, the website itself has been improved to reflect a better and more personalized user experience.

Foursquare is also a good example of a minimum viable product, as it started with a single feature. Users could earn badges by registering at various locations. As more and more users implemented this service and there was great enthusiasm for Foursquare, this minimum viable product has been extended and is now a comprehensive guide to the city.

Here are other examples of minimum viable products:

  • Drop box
  • Groupon
  • Zappos
  • Airbnb
  • Facebook
  • Amortize
  • List of angels

These are just a few examples of minimum viable products. Any business can start with a basic app and eventually grow into a big brand.

Conclusion

Finally, it’s important to mention that end-to-end testing is essential when bringing a minimum viable product to market. Even the most basic application can have failures or crashes in different sections of the system.

As such, an E2E test could alleviate developer concerns and ensure customers are happy with the minimum viable product. You never know when the most basic product might turn out to be such an awesome app as the Amazon online store.

Jeff Bezos might not know where his business would take him, but if he had never started the strict online bookstore, today there wouldn’t be an international network of delivery drivers, warehouses and of product buyers.

Remember, before a minimum viable product is sold to consumers, it is essential to perform end-to-end testing. Someday this minimal product could turn into an awesome consumer experience.


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