What Is Software Testing?

In 2018 bugs found in application code cost software companies in US 2.8 trillion dollars.

That is an almost incomprehensible amount of money that could have been saved by implementing a rigorous software testing plan in the development project.

If you are thinking of launching a new application, then take a moment to find out how software testing can benefit you.

Read on to discover the pros and cons of undergoing a software evaluation and how much it could save you in the long run. 

What Is Software Testing?

Software Testing is the process that ensures that software products are fit for the market and meet the requirements set by the original design project. Testing finds the defects or bugs in the software that may make the product difficult to use or cause it to fail altogether.

Software testing increases the quality of a product and its performance. This leads to greater customer and user satisfaction, and the business saves time and money.

Why Do We Need to Test?

One small defect can have a huge impact on how an application or system. In some cases, the defect may be small and result in a loss of customer satisfaction. However, in other cases, the results could be catastrophic or even fatal.

History is full of poor or non-existent software testing leading to bugs in a software program and negative outcomes. Here are some examples of the most impactful.

In 2014, Amazon’s third-party retailers experienced a bug from a pricing application that set all prices to 1p. As a result, everything from Playstations to Mattresses was under-sold, costing the suppliers a fortune.

Even more tragically, a software defect in a China Airlines Airbus caused the airplane to crash in 1994 at the cost of 264 lives.

In a more recent example, the long-anticipated game CyberPunk released in 2020 to huge disappointment by the fans. The game did not have enough time to fully test before launch due to a rush and contained thousands of game-breaking bugs. The event has tarnished CD Project Red’s reputation.

A lack of software testing can be costly and even deadly, so it is essential that a solid software evaluation is part of your release process.

What Are the Benefits?

You have seen some of the terrible outcomes when testing is not included in the software development process. But what are the benefits of undergoing a rigorous testing schedule?

Cost-Effective

Catching bugs early will save you time and money. You will not need to bring developers back on to a project at a later date to make emergency fixes under time pressures. Seeing the problems early makes them cheaper to fix.

Increased Customer Satisfaction

Once the product is in the customer’s hands it is difficult to undo any negative impact a poor customer experience may have on your reputation. Fixing the defects early will limit the number of negative experiences and increase positive customer responses.

Quality of Your Product

Reputations can be won or lost on the quality of an application you release. If your product is substandard compared to your competitors, it will rapidly disappear in a saturated market. Testing will help you make the best product you can.

Security

Rigorous Software Analysis will ensure that your products are secure when released to the public. Testing catches loopholes and vulnerabilities before they become a public risk.

Types of Software Testing

There are hundreds of different tests that can be carried out in your software development process. Each identifies different types of problems or security risks. A good software testing company, like Quality Logic, should be able to advise you on which tests you require to get your product to market.

Testing is usually broken down into three main categories: Functional Testing, Performance Testing, and Maintenance Testing. Each of these categories can be broken down further into two styles of testing Manual and Automated.

As the name suggests, an actual person does Manual Testing. They will compare the software to the requirements and often run through fully scripted scenarios to ensure that the software works as expected. They will use specialist software to do this, but it will be operated manually.

Automated testing uses automation tools to carry out the testing process. There are lots of well-known applications, like Selenium, that can be used for this process. The tests are built into the system by a programmer but then can be left to run thousands of tests automatically that provide a detailed report at the end.

Standard Software Testing Practices

Functional Testing involves a variety of different tests that will check the functionality of an application. These tests could include Unit Testing, Integration Testing, and User Acceptance Testing. There are many more test types that also fall into this category.

These tests validate the functionality of the software against the requirements set out in the design phases of the project. It will provide results on:

  • The baseline functions and whether they work or not
  • The usability of the software and whether a user can navigate the functions easily
  • The accessibility of the software and whether a user can access it from their devices
  • The error responses and whether the correct error message displays when something goes wrong

Performance Testing looks at how the software handles when under heavy load from many users or when active for a long period of time. It will provide data on the scalability of the software and how likely it is to fail if the application quickly becomes popular in a short period of time.

Maintenance Testing looks at software after it has been running for some time. It helps identify any problems that may have arisen during its service. It is a major part of the continuous improvement loop that ensures quality service.

Software Testing Is Essential

Hopefully, this guide has made it clear how essential software testing is to the software development process. If you are developing an application or other digital product, you need to make sure that your release plan involves testing throughout.

This way, you can rest assured that you have released the best quality product for your customers.

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