Java Selenium WebDriver: Tips and Tricks for Robust Test Automation

Testing is a crucial component of the application development cycle to ensure the quality and stability of the apps. Application testing can also assist in ensuring that the application functions appropriately across a range of browsers and operating systems. 

Before making an application available to users, developers can detect and repair issues in the code by testing it. Application testing, however, is a laborious and difficult process.  It is carried out in various ways, both manual and fully automated.

Application testing is frequently carried out using automated methods, which involve the use of several toolkits that make it possible to test the apps rapidly and effectively. Selenium WebDriver is one of those tools for automation testing.  Selenium Testing is well-liked because it enables developers to create tests in various programming languages and run them on a wide range of operating systems and browsers.

One of the most crucial components of the Selenium test suite family is Selenium WebDriver. Programming languages like Java, Python, C#, and Ruby are among the many that Selenium Webdriver supports. We will, however, limit our discussion in this article to Java-based Selenium testing suggestions. It can, however, be simply changed to any language of one’s preference.

Here we will also discuss the Selenium WebDriver definition, its components, its advantages, and some helpful tips on how to make the most of it and build reliable and maintainable test automation. Let’s start with some Selenium fundamentals, before getting into Selenium WebDriver.

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When it comes to automation testing tools Selenium is one of the most preferred open-source test automation frameworks. Selenium allows test automation of web apps or websites across different browsers & operating systems. Thousands of automation QA engineers efficiently use Selenium to facilitate the execution of testing and ensure that their web applications are up to users’ demands.

Selenium is compatible with a wide range of programming languages, including Java, JavaScript, Python, C#, PHP, and more, enabling testers to automate their website testing in any programming language they are familiar with. This flexibility makes Selenium very strong and widely used.

By repeatedly automating test cases, testers can quickly distribute test cycles by using the Selenium framework. Selenium can support a reliable, bug-free release deployment workflow when used with the CI/CD pipeline.

Components of Selenium 

When it comes to cross-browser testing, the testing community frequently uses the Selenium toolset. The testing process is facilitated by the Selenium test suite’s three major components.

Selenium IDE

The Selenium IDE (Integrated Development Environment) is a Selenium WebDriver-based GUI record/playback program. It is a Firefox and Chrome extension that allows developers to record and playback automated tests to quickly generate tests. A built-in debugger for Selenium IDE Chrome also makes it possible to troubleshoot the tests.

Selenium Webdriver

Selenium WebDriver is an open-source tool used to automate user-side web browser interaction. For greater flexibility, it supports many programming languages including Java, C#, Python, and Perl, and requires familiarity with any one of them. Writing tests that mimic user interactions with a web application is simple with Selenium WebDriver.

Selenium Grid

With the use of Selenium Grid, test cases may be run concurrently across several browsers, computers, and operating systems. Testing for cross-browser compatibility is quite simple with this tool.

Selenium Grid’s parallel testing capabilities on multiple devices or virtual machines (VMs) make it possible to scale test automation quickly. It will be possible to run the automated tests considerably more quickly with the help of Selenium Grid, an essential component of the entire Selenium testing suite.

Now let’s move on to our topic on Selenium WebDriver.

Introduction to the Selenium WebDriver

One of the most well-liked online automation test frameworks is Selenium WebDriver, which enables the execution of cross-browser tests to ensure that web-based applications function as expected. A wide range of programmers can develop test scripts using the Selenium WebDriver libraries, which are available for many different programming languages.

Web Driver directly interacts with the browser and executes the automated test that the tester has created by utilizing the browser’s built-in functionality. Numerous test frameworks, services, and libraries are available to help organize tests, track progress, and give detailed reporting to get more out of Selenium WebDriver tests.

With Selenium WebDriver, testers can automate actions like keystrokes, mouse clicks, drag-and-drop, click-and-hold, selecting, and more in real-world settings.

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Features of Selenium WebDriver

Selenium is a wonderful tool for automation testing because it offers many features. Some of them are;

  • Selenium is open source and portable, hence there are no licensing or other fees associated with downloading or using it. Many other automation products on the market do not operate in this manner.
  • As was already said, Selenium is a collection of tools that includes a tool for every situation and is adaptable to various working styles.
  • Selenium execution is faster since no intermediary server is needed because it directly communicates with the browser. 
  • Selenium supports a wide range of frameworks, including Maven, JUnit, and TestNG, to make automated testing simpler. For automating the deployment process, CI and CD solutions like Jenkin are also supported.
  • Cross-browser compatibility is a feature of WebDriver scripts. This allows testers to reuse the test script for various testing circumstances.

The architecture of Selenium WebDriver 

Before going on to the tips and tricks for utilizing Selenium WebDriver for reliable test automation, let’s first have a look at how the Selenium WebDriver API interacts with actual browsers via browser drivers and get an understanding of the Selenium WebDriver architecture. The architecture of WebDriver is made up of four main parts:

Selenium Client Libraries/Language Bindings

As a result of the creation of language bindings by the Selenium development team, Selenium supports a variety of libraries, including those written in Ruby, Python, Java, and other languages. From Selenium’s official website, one may download all of the supported language bindings. For instance, Python Bindings are required to use the browser driver in Python. The complete Selenium code will be translated into JSON format after the test cases are activated.

JSON Wire Protocol

JavaScript Object Notation is referred to as JSON. Data can be moved from the server to the client using the transport mechanism it offers. It makes it simpler to read and write data from JSON by supporting a variety of data types like arrays and objects. The main method used to transport data across HTTP servers is JSON Wire Protocol. Through the HTTP Protocol, generated JSON is made accessible to browser drivers.

Browser Drivers

Selenium offers drivers specific for each browser without revealing the inner workings of how each browser works. The browser drivers communicate with their browsers by creating a secure connection, and they carry out the commands by interpreting the Json that the browsers provide them.


As was already mentioned, Selenium supports a variety of browsers, including Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Internet Explorer, and others. Only browsers that are locally installed, either on the local workstation or the server machines, will be allowed to conduct tests on Selenium. Installing a browser is therefore mandatory.

Java Selenium WebDriver tips and tricks

One of the most effective automation tools for testing web applications is without a doubt Selenium Webdriver. It’s an open-source package that comes with an extensive set of features that make life much simpler for testers. It is just like imitating the activities of a real user when used to test a website. It is the ideal tool for automation because of all these features together.

The Selenium WebDriver tips and tricks listed below will help to use it to its maximum effectiveness. These tips will help in code optimization, quality enhancement, and the provision of reliable automation solutions.  Let’s look at each of the tricks and suggestions individually.

Wait for a page with JavaScript (JS) to load.

Working with pages bloated with JavaScript is extremely typical. A web page may occasionally take some time to load and require some waiting time until it is fully loaded. Setting the page load TimeOut is crucial.

Before performing any further actions on the page, confirm that it has fully loaded. Javascriptexecutor can assist in waiting for a page and determining whether or not it has fully loaded.

Utilize Selenium Webdriver to take a screenshot

Sometimes it’s crucial to take screenshots as a test case is running to spot issues and troubleshoot them. It is simple to capture a screenshot of any problem using Webdriver. Create a copy of it, then utilize it to obtain the screenshot. Testers can also utilize the kit’s getScreenshotAs method, which allows them to define the format in which they want their screenshots to be.

Get Web Element’s HTML source using Webdriver

Selenium Get the inner HTML of a web element using the getAttribute method that WebDriver offers. It can be done by obtaining the component first. Afterward, use getAttribute to obtain a web element’s innerHTML.

Manage timeouts and browser crashes with WebDriverWait

The Java package WebDriverWait allows programmers to postpone the test’s execution until a certain requirement has been met. It is useful for handling timeouts and browser crashes.

Annotations can be used to make tests easier to read

The Selenium tests can be made more readable and maintainable by adding annotations. Java classes called annotations let developers add metadata to the source code. Although they resemble JavaDocs, they are used to add metadata rather than to document the source code.

Do not use Thread. sleep()

A web page’s loading time is influenced by variables like machine performance, server performance, server location, and network. As a result, it is challenging to estimate how long it will take for an application or an element within one to load. This results in potential wait issues, which are external factors that interfere with the test script.

The common practice of using Thread. sleep() is unreliable since it pauses the test script or instructs the program to do nothing for a set amount of time, regardless of what the application under test is doing. As a result, it should be avoided.

To manage delays more effectively than sleep, Selenium has wait methods like Implicit wait and Explicit wait. These methods suspend execution until time runs out or an expected condition is satisfied. Implicit wait instructs the browser to hold all web components on the page for a specific period. The next line of code is executed if the element becomes available sooner than the implicit delay time.

Manage Pop-up windows

Interacting with pop-up windows during Selenium web automation is a regular difficulty. The three most common types of these window pop-ups are Simple alerts, confirmation alerts, and prompt alerts.

WebDriver can only handle web-based notifications; it cannot handle alerts from Windows. The switch_to method can be used to control these pop-up windows.

Choose Dropdown options

The select class in Selenium WebDriver is used to select and deselect choices in dropdown menus.  The dropdown WebElement can be sent as parameters to the constructor of an object of the Select type to initialize the object. Users may select the option in a variety of ways. The methods include choosing based on text, index, and values.

Use the drag-and-drop feature

Occasionally, moving an element from one place to another is necessary. The basic methods offered for web elements do not support dragging and dropping. Use the Action class offered by Selenium to carry out this.

Selenium automated testing using LambdaTest

One of the most well-liked and effective tools in a tester’s toolbox for testing web applications is Selenium WebDriver, which speeds up, streamlines, and simplifies Selenium tests. When compared to other tools, Selenium WebDriver completes the execution of test scripts more quickly.

For reliable results, every Selenium test needs to be executed on real devices. Therefore, it’s crucial to choose a Selenium-based platform that supports testing on a cloud of real devices, like LambdaTest, to help with web automation testing.

LambdaTest is a secure, reliable cloud-based digital experience platform for automated and manual testing of web and mobile applications. To achieve faster results without sacrificing accuracy, it enables testers to perform parallel tests on a cloud Selenium Grid of more than 3000 real devices, browsers, and operating system combinations.

LambdaTest may be easily integrated with well-known CI/CD tools like Jenkins, CircleCI, etc. to enhance collaboration and establish a delivery pipeline free of flaws. By leveraging video recordings and automatically generated images of mistakes, its complete debugging capability enables testers to find issues before they cause issues for real users.

In other words, LambdaTest simplifies the life of testers by offering developer-focused resources including built-in development tools and integrations with well-known programming languages and frameworks. As a result, automated Selenium testing is quicker, and results-focused.


When using Selenium WebDriver with Java, testers frequently run into a few common issues. Following the above-mentioned essential tips will enable testers to complete their Selenium tests and resolve a huge number of issues that arise when scripting in automation testing. The automated test can run more steadily and quickly while also taking up less time if the above-mentioned guidance is kept in mind.

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