What Is Salesforce Testing and Why Should You Do It?
Salesforce is one of the best-known Customer Relationship Management (CRM) solutions. Salesforce is in regular use by over 150,000 companies worldwide. One of the biggest benefits of Salesforce is how easy it is to customize. As a result, it is often used to power business-critical functions. This is true if you use low-code tools in the Lightning Platform or build customizations from scratch with APEX. But this flexibility also makes Salesforce testing much harder to get right. Here, we explain what Salesforce testing is, and why you should do it.
What is Salesforce Testing?
It’s easy to think of Salesforce as just another business tool like Slack or Gmail. In fact, Salesforce is much more powerful and customizable. Indeed, every single Salesforce deployment is unique. That means you need to treat it more like custom-made software. In turn, that means you need to spend time and effort on testing it. Salesforce testing is like any other type of software testing. However, it is more challenging because of the number of integrations and customizations. Typically, you need to use a combination of manual and automated testing for your Salesforce deployment. Tests you might come across include:
- Unit Testing: This involves adding tests within your code that test each function in turn.
- Smoke Testing: Quick and simple tests designed to root out obvious problems early on.
- System and Production Testing: Tests designed to check that your whole deployment is working end-to-end.
- Regression Testing: Used to make sure any updates and changes haven’t broken your existing deployment.
- UAT (user acceptance testing): Tests run by end-users or simulated end users to make sure the product is fit for purpose.
- Load Testing: Salesforce is often deployed at scale in the cloud. You need to check how it performs when the system is under stress or high load.
- Security Testing: You probably use Salesforce to store sensitive data. That makes security testing vital.
- Deployment Testing: Deploying an updated Salesforce customization can be tricky. You need to test that it can be done without breaking all your business-critical systems that rely on it!
Why Do You Need Salesforce Testing?
It can be tempting to think of Salesforce as an “out-of-the-box” solution. But it’s actually incredibly complex. So, you need to consider how many things could go wrong during development, deployment, and beyond. To some extent, we can generalize here. Much of the testing you will need to do to check your Salesforce deployment will apply to any web app. Bear in mind though that there are a few things that make Salesforce unique.
- Salesforce is often used for business-critical functions. You need to make sure Salesforce won’t fall over under unexpected loads, protect your customer’s data, and give your end-users a product they can rely on. All this while you try to maximize ROI and reduce business risks.
- Salesforce releases periodic updates whether you ask for them or not. Today’s rolling delivery and deployment systems keep your software up-to-date. But the problem is, changes might break your existing deployments without you having changed anything. The solution is to perform automated regression testing whenever you can.
- Your own team is often the end user for your Saleseforce deployment. Salesforce needs to meet the expectations of you and your team, no matter what your industry. Salesforce testing allows you to make sure your software can cope with the unexpected. Combine manual and automated testing to check Salesforce before, during, and after deployment.
- Boost speed and efficiency. Like any large software deployment, Salesforce can end up sluggish if you aren’t careful. Testing is the main tool we have to protect us against this problem.
- Salesforce depends on third-party integrations. One of the most useful features of Salesforce is the way it integrates with so many other applications like GSuite, Office 365, or Mailchimp. But this brings a whole set of potential failure points. That means you need to choose a Salesforce Testing approach that checks everything is working end-to-end.
The Importance of Automated Salesforce Testing
If you know about testing you can be forgiven for thinking Salesforce testing should focus on manual tests. This is especially true since most Salesforce applications are generated dynamically. While this makes test automation hard, it isn’t impossible. Fortunately, modern AI-powered test automation platforms cope with the challenges of Salesforce testing. These include dynamic content, integrations, and frequent code changes. This means you should look at how to automate as much of your Salesforce testing as possible..
When you look to choose a solution, ask the following things:
- Can this solution handle end-to-end testing for all my Salesforce integrations? This should include testing any generated outputs such as invoices, bills of sale, or similar.
- Will the solution cope with dynamically generated content that changes often? Or will you need to update all your tests every time something changes?
- Does this solution allow your internal users to help with test creation? Salesforce applications are often used for complex back-office functions. That means you need to involve the actual users in any testing. In turn, that means you need a solution that makes it easy for them to see what the tests are doing.
- Can the solution integrate with any of your other business tools, such as Slack or Jenkins? If so, it will make it much easier to incorporate it into your day-to-day life.
Salesforce is often used for business-critical functions, which makes Salesforce testing itself a business-critical function. We have seen various types of testing that are available and hopefully, you now understand why you need this. If you haven’t done it already, you should go and look for a solution that helps you automate your Salesforce testing. That way, you can feel secure in the knowledge your deployment is always working as expected.