How to Use Cypress UI to Design Useful and Effective end-to-end tests?

Software development without automation testing is hard to imagine today, as testing in a rapid-release environment can simply become an incrementally costly task. While a minor modification can break the earlier authored tests, testing the static elements for top-quality releases also calls for repetitive testing of elements that weren’t changed at all. Hence, end-to-end test automation!  Automating end-to-end testing considerably increases the rates of test coverage and facilitates the scaling of testing processes by reusing the test scripts formed earlier.

E2E automated testing also makes test execution more accurate and faster via well-maintained and efficient test scripts. However, for E2E test automation, the idea is to seek an intuitive and reliable platform that can be used by both the developers and test engineers for extended benefits. One such platform or framework is Cypress, which allows them to generate automated web test scripts in JS.

What are the top reasons to automate E2E testing?

  1. Documentation counted for FREE: Tests come in handy as they explain how your code functions with its predictable behavior. Testing, unlike written documentation every so often, has to be up to date every single time.
  2. Update your code with confidence: The perfect testing let you refactor code with confidence that you aren’t breaking any functionality and without modifying the tests.
  3. Bugs/ errors are gone forever: By writing up test cases for each bug, you can rest assured that these will never reverse or return. Additionally, writing tests will enhance your know-how of the code and the requirements. Using tests, you might find glitches that you could miss otherwise.

Layers of the Test Pyramid

Testing pyramid is an empirical model formulated by Mike Cohn and was presented in his book, ‘Agile Estimating & Planning.’ This automated testing pyramid or a test pyramid operates through three advanced levels:

  1. Unit Tests
  2. Integration Tests
  3. End-to-End Tests

What is End to End testing?

End to End testing (commonly called E2E) is a form of testing method in which a specific app is tested from the beginning to the end of a test flow. These flows are predefined as per the conditions/ functionalities to be checked for the successful execution of the application. Usually, end-to-end flows are based on the user connections and how they perform multiple actions on the application.

To execute End to End testing, a well-organized and documented test flow should be prepared. This testing flow should comprise the clearly explained functionality for the given app, the specific necessities for the scope of the tests, and the test technique to test the specified requirements and the acceptance standards for those as well. Hence, with the E2E testing, we can verify all the essential components and related peripherals to accomplish the purpose of the app that is being tested.

Cypress is an outstanding automation testing tool to execute end-to-end testing. It records videos of test runs automatically, and its test runner is Chrome, which almost all QA engineers are familiar with. Cypress also captures the actions it performed on the DOM on video, giving you clear, visually debuggable records of failed test runs. It is one of the fantastic tools right out of the box.

But isn’t their Selenium?

Each software developer has suffered before configuring Selenium. There are a suite of steps, often enormously confusing, requiring compatible versions of browsers, drivers, Java, Selenium, etc. It’s simply exhausting! Even several front-end developers don’t certainly want to use Java. Moreover, Cypress simply outperforms Selenium regarding reliability, ease of use, and speed.

What is Cypress?

Cypress is an open-source, free, and MIT-licensed written in JavaScript. It is one of the best automation testing frameworks built for modern web apps based on modern frameworks such as React. It provides a User Interface to show what tests and commands are executing, passing, and/or failing. It has over 42.6K+ Stars on Github and is used by big giants like DHL and NASA. With the assistance of Cypress End to End test, unit and integration tests are easy to write & debug.

This tool is built and optimized as the smartest tool for local development. Indeed, after using Cypress for some time, you may possibly be tempted to do all of your product development within it as it offers a platform to debug and retain your code easily and rapidly. These are some of the outstanding traits mentioned that Cypress boasts of:

What is Cypress End-to-End Testing?

E2E testing with Cypress has evolved the approaches of E2E testing to a completely new level. Let us see what made Cypress an automated testing tool as one of the best tools for end to end testing.

  • Cypress is specialized in E2E Testing. 
    • Unlike the other automated testing frameworks, Cypress isn’t a common automation framework. It is especially operated for the purpose of the End to End tests.
  • All-in-one architecture for the automated tests with Cypress
    • Earlier in the Cypress era, we had to pick the elements individually for the automation process. At first, we have a framework for tests with an assertion library, and after that, we have to add/ set up Se (Selenium) with a wrapper for that. And if required, we also have to install extra libraries/tools that would be vitally required to perform the testing flow.
    • However, with the Cypress framework, we just need to write a testing flow mostly in Javascript, and the test can be run without adding any hassles to attain the test results. This is for the reason that Cypress provides all-in-one architecture with a tests framework, an assertion library, with mocking & stubbing for the tests, and all of it without any frameworks like Selenium and its backup library integration.
  • It compatible with nearly each front-end framework
    • Cypress can principally test whatever runs in a browser; the architecture of Cypress supports almost each Javascript front-end framework. As the testing is also written in JS, the QA, and Software Development sides can explore easily through the testing flows and debug/ analyze the code base/test flow.

Cypress Installation & Configuration

Cypress comes with some documentation devoted to visual testing & a list of all available plug-ins to aid in configuring it for visual regression tests.

We decided to select cypress-plugin-snapshots due to ease of use and the amount of time required for the initial build/ setup. There are ample great tools and libraries out there; thus, check them out!

Installing Cypress

Installing Cypress is quite simple and straightforward.

  1. Run the following command for installing Cypress.
  1. yarn add -D cypress
  1. Add the below scripts to your package.json file.


  1. Now that the Cypress tool has been installed implement the following command to introduce Cypress.
  1.  Select End to End testing after Cypress launches.
  1. Click Continue.
  1. Select your preferred browser (I will use Chrome).
  1. After your preferred browser opens up, click “Create new empty spec.”
  2. This will generate a new spec file in which we can write your testing.


  1. Now, our spec has been included in the cypress/e2efolder, and then we can easily run it with Cypress.

Cypress Folders

First Impression of Cypress’ Structure’

Now when you open your newly shaped project in the (IDE (integrated development environment) of choice. If you navigate to this folder, you will check the following test structure:


└── cypress

└── fixtures

└── integration

└── plugins

└── support

└── cypress.json


  1. Fixtures

The Fixture folder comprises the dummy information that we wish to make use of in testing. This comes in handy when APIs are excessively costly to call, or APIs forbid access through the public internet. In such circumstances, we can move the data from that specific API into a JSON file in the fixtures folder and then accessibly get data for testing.

Now, this brings us to the extra question – “Why store this JSON file in fixtures first and not store this outside in a distinct folder?” We do this since Cypress proffers out-of-the-box backup for using these files statically, and zero manual data import is needed for the JSON data folder. Therefore, data imports become easy and stress-free.

  1. Integrations

This folder is tremendously vital for testing as it comprises all the test or specification or spec files. We can generate multiple folders in the integrations folder for test file classification. These test files comprise the test description in the described technique. Each test file must ideally have only one description, which can have several tests in it. Therefore, they describe technique can be understood as a set of tests, and all such tests are independently explained under this method.

  1. Plugins

Plugins are utilized for extending the functionality of Cypress, such as in circumstances where we need oAuth from browsers, which is a complicated procedure.

  1. Support

This folder enables the user to generate reusable code and custom commands. This becomes of critical significance in the cases of extended codes, such as user login. The code in the support folder could be called repeatedly as and when required.

  1. Video

This folder comprises the video playbacks of each test execution. Such videos can be played by the user to find any issue or problem with test runs. This is significant in a CI/CD environment where test logs may not give in-depth know-how of the test outcomes. Next, we share a real-time demo of automated tests with Cypress and some outcomes of how this automation can accelerate the tests without affecting release quality.

Cypress Best Practices

Thankfully, a Cypress comprises many example recipes that can assist you. The common pattern to deal with Single Sign-On validation/ authentication is as follows:

  • Use Cypress command’ cy. request() to create an HTTP request to your authentication check (in this case, Auth0)
  • Parse the tokens in the reaction
  • Fix tokens on local storage

Basic Concepts of Cypress

Cypress has implemented Mocha’s syntax to develop test cases. Below are some of the key constructs that are mainly used in Cypress test development:

  • it(): It is utilized for specific test cases. It takes two arguments, a string describing what the test must do and a callback function that comprises our real test.
  • describe(): It is used to collect our tests. It takes two distinct arguments, the first is the test group’s name & the second is a callback function.
  • after(): It runs when after each test in the block.
  • before(): It runs when before each test in the block.
  • afterEach(): It executes after each test in the block.
  • beforeEach(): It executes before all tests in the block.
  • .skip(): It is used to skip a specific suite or test; append “.skip()” against the .it() block.
  • .only(): It is used to execute a specific suite or test; append “.only” against the .it() block.

How to run Cypress End to End Testing on cloud Cypress Grid?

You have performed Cypress E2E testing on the local Cypress Grid. You can easily perform Cypress parallel testing on multiple versions, browsers, and OSs (operating systems) using the cloud-based platform. Cloud-centric cross-browser test platforms such as LambdaTest allow you to automate web testing with Cypress on a web browser farm of real-time OS and browsers. We can run Cypress End to End testing on a blazing fastest test execution cloud.

LambdaTest proffers top-scale parallelization with simple integration with a Continuous Integration/ Continuous Deployment (CI/CD) pipeline. Cypress test outcomes will appear in real-time via the LambdaTest Cypress CLI. Once all test cases are implemented, you can check the Cypress test outcomes on the LambdaTest Dashboard. On platforms like LambdaTest, you can also see videos, screenshots, and logs for each test case.

You can execute your first Cypress test on the LambdaTest platform in some easy steps:

  1. Clone the LambdaTest-Cypress-Cloud GitHub repo and navigate to the cloned directory.
  1. To perform Cypress testing, you must set up your LambdaTest access key and username in the environment variables. You can acquire them from the LambdaTest Automated Dashboard.



  1. Install Node.js version 12 or advanced. You can download it from the authorized Node.js site.

Cypress Trends on GitHub

The information below is gathered from the authorized website of Cypress GitHub repository:

  • Stars:6k+
  • Used By: 711k+
  • Forks:7k+
  • Contributors: 424
  • Releases: 298

If you are a software developer or a QA tester, the Cypress 101 certification will prepare you to write tests quickly and with high confidence by giving you a better understanding of the basics of Cypress End to End testing.

Some final words

Cypress with Cucumber is a great duo test framework and has the following advantages:

  • Simple to install & configure
  • Very active community
  • Faster by running the testing straight in the app
  • Has a robust real-time debugger
  • Super comprehensive documentation
  • Simple to write because JavaScript — no requisite for Java
  • Beneficial and easy API


Cypress framework is a great tool for those who wish to generate useful end to end testing with less effort. QA testers can easily accomplish the E2E test coverage for a given web app by using the TDD method. It eventually makes it very simple to debug issues with its live snapshots, preview, screenshots, and videos. It does fall down into definite zones and might not be the better solution for certain projects.  Unlike Selenium, Cypress framework isn’t dependent on browser drivers, as it straight interacts with the Browsers. Another benefit is the diverse approaches offered by Cypress debugging. As all the tools are inside this automated framework, Cypress offers a breakthrough in End to End testing by just writing a JS script.

However, to leverage the supreme advantage of Cypress end to end testing, it is suggested to test on a real device cloud like that of LambdaTest so as to take real-time user conditions into account while testing. This makes detecting glitches/ bottlenecks in the user flow stress-free, helping deliver a flawless and smooth, seamless experience.