Is Crowdsource Testing Right for Me?

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Crowdsourced Testing (CT), sometimes referred to as Crowd Testing or Crowdsourcing, is an emerging method for performing quality control testing under real world conditions. In CT, the “Crowd” refers to a group of testers in various locations with diverse backgrounds, skill levels, and platforms. This crowd serves as a “fresh” user pool that can perform remote testing and provide objective feedback on the application. The benefits of this type of testing are numerous, but it sometimes can be difficult to see. The benefits of crowdsource testing include increased accuracy, decreased cost, decreased tester bias, quicker testing, and more diversity.

The Benefits of Crowdsource Testing

It is hard to overstate the power and potency of Crowdsource Testing. If you are an established brand, you can leverage your brand’s goodwill, and people may test for you for free, without rewards or remuneration. The five benefits of crowdsource testing include:

  1. Increased Accuracy: Testing products in a lab has its merit, but some conditions can only be simulated in the real world, and crowdsource testing may be the best way to simulate what real users are feeling and how real users will use the product.
  2. Decreased Cost: Since the product company only pays for the valid bugs that are reported, this could be one way of saving money. Usually the time to test the software is comparably shorter, which in turn leads to better productivity and so it is cheaper than hiring the engineers, designers, and/or specialists you would need.
  3. Decreased Tester Bias: Testers performing this form of testing are not biased towards the internal concerns of the company. Since they are not a part of the company, they are only concerned with how it is working, not what will make the boss happy!
  4. Quicker testing: Since there is large number of testers testing the software at the same time, the testing can be done very quickly. Less time to market could mean more money coming into your business quickly.
  5. More Diversity: The pool of testers is as diverse it can possibly be. It has the variations in languages and locations needed to make it a truly good test. This helps in testing all applications that are based on locations.

There are a countless number of success stories out there, but some people still have major doubts about it. It’s important to understand that crowdsourcing isn’t perfect. Crowdsourcing is not meant to replace in-the-lab testing but the two should have a symbiotic relationship. Using crowdsourcing should be like when a good writer uses a grammar checker; it is another level of testing, another way of polishing the product to make it the best it can be for the masses and for your target audience.