Testing SaaS (Software as a Service) solutions is arguably a more complex process than testing regular software because of a number of SaaS specifics. Delivery speed, security issues, performance challenges, licensing, live upgrades, and backend components access are among some of them.
But applying the best SaaS testing practices will help to deal with all the difficulties in the QA process and ensure its effectiveness. Here is our list of such practices.
Fast and frequent software updates, which are an integral part of the SaaS model, require efficient and quick testing activities. Test automation can help in this situation. Automating repeatable and long-running, as well as data-intensive tests can optimize the testing effort. However, automated tests cannot completely substitute manual testing. So, as always, the right balance of automated and manual testing is required for the best results.
Continuous Integration / Continuous Delivery (CI/CD) methodology
When the approach of frequent and small releases typical of the CI/CD methodology is applied to SaaS testing, it allows to deal with the speedy updates of SaaS software easier and better. It also allows to find more bugs, especially since continuous functional and regression testing are an important part of the CI/CD approach to quality assurance.
Since time is of the essence in SaaS testing, focusing the testing effort in the areas that are the most crucial for the SaaS solution is a reasonable strategy. To determine such areas, it is necessary to research which functionality customers use the most and consider the most important. Another essential factor is to determine in which areas possible issues would have the worst effect on the SaaS company. All these areas will need to be tested particularly thoroughly.
A proper test environment
When testing SaaS solutions, using a production environment is usually not an option because it will have a negative effect on the existing SaaS customers. In this situation, setting a proper staging environment is very important. It will allow to get reliable test results without influencing the existing application users during the process.
When testing integration of a SaaS solution with various external dependent components (for example, SaaS users’ databases or enterprise software), these external components often cannot be reached at the time of testing. In this situation, service virtualization can help. It simulates the dependencies between the SaaS system and the external components in question. This is particularly important for functional, performance, and API testing.
Using powerful hardware during quality assurance of a SaaS solution helps to verify its performance with additional resources.
Increasing the workload during performance testing
It is useful to add concurrent users from multiple environments during performance testing of a SaaS solution to increase the workload. This way testers can better verify the stable performance of the application under different conditions.
Thorough security testing
Security testing is one of the main priorities when it comes to quality assurance of a SaaS application. One of the important things to note is that security also always needs to be tested during migration and integration.
The best practices of SaaS testing is a good way to counter its challenges. Let the 8 practices we described boost the efficiency of your QA process. And if you need any help with testing a SaaS solution, please don’t hesitate to contact the QATestLab team.