Written By :Appsierra

Mon Apr 01 2024

5 min read

Key Differences Between Keyword-driven Testing And Data-driven Testing

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keyword driven testing and data driven testing

In this blog we will learn about keyword-driven testing, the difference between data-driven and keyword-driven framework, keyword-driven framework, data-driven vs keyword-driven, and keyword-driven framework in selenium. 

What is Keyword-Driven Testing?

Keyword-driven testing is a means of illustrating test cases by utilizing a predefined pair of Keywords. These Keywords are terms that are correlated with a set of actions that are needed to perform a particular step in a test case. By using keywords to define test steps rather than natural language, test cases can be simpler to understand, automate, and maintain. 

Keyword-driven testing halves the test case creation method into two stages, like the first stage, which is the “Design and Development” stage, and the second stage is the “Implementation” stage. In the “Design and Development stage”, the set of actions that would indicate each keyword is constructed.

This implies that all the actions that are required to be taken under a single keyword are consecutively specified and laid down. In the second stage,  the ultimate execution can be either physical or automated or a combination of the two, depending on the situation. These commands are enforced in a set and precise order which is inferred in the first stage. Keyword-driven testing is also recognized as table-driven testing or action keyword-based testing. It can be referred to for both manual and automated testing

By utilizing this method, the test designer does not have to understand how to program or want any knowledge of test tools. Essentially, this method delivers an extensive set of Keywords which is operated to build test cases. In keyword-driven testing, every keyword describes testing activities such as keystrokes, mouse clicks, etc. A keyword signifies a purpose and is formulated as a set of actions that must be implemented on a test object. Now let’s look at the advantages and disadvantages of Keyword-driven testing.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Keyword-Driven Testing


  1. Test cases are understandable, concise, and simple to change.
  2. The new test cases can utilize the existing keywords more effortlessly.
  3. Keyword-driven testing can be accomplished without programming knowledge.
  4. Due to the keywords having been already specified as a set of actions that are required to be taken, the test can be performed by nearly anyone.
  5. Keyword-driven testing enables you to perform test automation in the initial stages of the software development life cycle even before an application is provided for testing. This not only makes it cheaper and simpler to fix the bugs in the first stages but also saves you valuable time.


  1. Improving the keywords and their related functionalities is a time-consuming procedure.
  2. It might act as a constraint to the technically abled testers. It happens if the keywords prevent the testers from making use of their technical knowledge and years of experience while driving the test.

As we have talked about the advantages and disadvantages of Keyword-driven testing so now let’s look at the keyword-driven framework in selenium. Frameworks in Selenium aid separate the code and the data to assist in maintaining test cases. Frameworks make the code readable, and reusable, and lessen the cost of maintenance. Let’s seek a Keyword Driven Testing Framework using Selenium Webdriver.

What is a Keyword-Driven Framework in Selenium?

A Keyword Driven Framework has all instructions and operations written in an outer Excel file.

Let’s take a glance at the method flow to comprehend how it functions.

  1. The automation script will examine the instructions or test input data from the Excel sheet
  2. The input data is inscribed in the application under experiment
  3. The test cases are accomplished and outcomes are returned
  4. The test output data is saved in the Excel sheet

Although the technique is easy, a structured approach is pursued to deliver keyword-driven testing in Selenium. However, before going further, let’s talk about how the Keyword-Driven approach is different from the Data-Driven approach.

Difference Between Data-Driven and Keyword-Driven Framework

In automated testing, to get a bigger test range in test automation, you can accomplish tests with various inputs of data. The fundamental working of Data-driven testing is that you run your test with a varied set of input data to ensure that with different variable values, the application will operate as expected. In this technique, you operate data as inputs to your script actions. Each data set you possess in the script gives a test case. 

So the further data sets you provide, the more test cases you have. On the other hand, the essential working of Keyword-driven testing is that you utilize a keyword to illustrate an action. A series of keywords drive a script. So you can try the same set of keywords to create a variety of test scripts. To select the perfect Test Automation Framework, you should look at the different factors that can be assessed in selecting the right testing automation framework for your product.

1. The same behavior requires to be tested with various sets of test data

If your product wants to test the same behavior with various sets of test data, a data-driven framework can be an adequate option.

2. Test data is expected to change frequently

If you know test data is determined to alter, there is no sense in keeping it entrenched in your test scripts. A data-driven framework is your requirement here.

3. Programming technique in the testing team

If all the members of your testing team are equally useful at programming, you can select a non-keyword-driven framework. If your testing team has members who are not good at programming but possess good knowledge of the product to be tested, you can select a keyword-driven framework so that everyone can provide in building automation for the product.

4. Product behavior is required to change

If you know there can be a modification in the way some elements of the product are expected to behave, a keyword-driven framework can be your alternative as you would only desire to update the performances of limited functions in one place rather than altering many test scripts. Relying on your desire you can also select to have a hybrid framework, where you can incorporate data-driven and keyword-driven testing frameworks to take advantage of both.

Related Articles:

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