Customers today want a seamless omnichannel experience when it comes to seeking information, buying stuff, or hiring services on the World Wide Web. The intense competition across industry verticals has ensured that customers do not have to depend on one entity to fulfil their needs. They are rather an experimenting lot and settle for the one that delivers the best customer experience. Thus, when customer experience seems to determine the traffic for enterprises why downplay the importance of quality assurance? Ecommerce is one sector hugely impacted by customer experience. Here, a small glitch causing latency, downtime, inaccurate readings, and other issues can cost the company in terms of lost customers, reduced sales, and damning reviews from dissatisfied customers.
Software issues for eCommerce entities let their presence known during big-ticket events like Black Friday Sales or New Year Sales, among others. According to Amazon, the eCommerce behemoth, every 100 ms of latency results in a 1% drop in sales. If this is the case with arguably the world’s largest eCommerce platform then less should be said about start-ups with limited budgets. Even though eCommerce is growing by leaps and bounds and is likely to be worth $22.1 trillion soon, according to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), it is the focus on quality assurance that can sustain the growth. So, testing for eCommerce applications should be made an integral part of the SDLC. On the other hand, the absence of eCommerce testing can be devastating for enterprises, let us find out how.
The eCommerce platforms of today are large, complex, and contain a host of features and functionalities. In the absence of eCommerce application testing the platforms remain unwieldy, error-prone, slow to load, and fraught with security risks. The consequences of ignoring eCommerce testing are as follows:
Cyberattacks: Ecommerce platforms have payment gateways where shoppers use payment methodologies such as credit/debit cards, net banking, and digital wallets, among others. If the payment gateways have any security-related vulnerability, hackers can gain access to the confidential financial information of shoppers such as credit or debit card numbers, expiry dates of cards, and CVC codes. The security breach caused thereof can be devastating. Not only the customers and the eCommerce platform are likely to lose money, but the brand equity can hit rock bottom as well. In a competitive landscape where building trust is the preliminary requirement to draw traffic, cyberattacks can undo everything an eCommerce brand had assiduously built over the years.
Poor compatibility: Online shoppers use different devices, interfaces, browsers, and networks to access and use any eCommerce platform. Without any testing for eCommerce applications, shoppers may face unexpected functional defects or incomplete rendering on their personal devices. Such a scenario may impact the customer experience negatively and drive customers to the competitors. Ecommerce domain testing can validate the compatibility of the platform with different devices, operating systems, browsers, and networks.
Poor customer loyalty: If an eCommerce platform has issues such as unstructured product lists, improper search filters, an error-prone checkout system, and poor navigability and loading speed, customers are expected to develop an aversion for the brand. This can be hugely impactful as brand loyalty ensures customers to shop with an eCommerce platform repeatedly and not get distracted by the competition. However, the lack of performance testing of eCommerce applications can result in the applications performing poorly when the stakes are high such as during special days for high-value sales, namely, Black Friday Sales.
Hit profitability: In the absence of eCommerce QA, companies may end up delivering poor quality products to the customers. This can lead to increased expenses on shipping for replacements. With a proper quality control mechanism in place, such issues can be checked. Moreover, eCommerce website testing can ensure the remediation of issues associated with the front-end and back-end of the website. With proper quality control bugs or glitches are identified and fixed before the platform is released for use into the market. The savings on rework or fixing of glitches after release can be substantial and add to the profitability of the company.
With the growth in eCommerce maintaining an upward trajectory, especially post the pandemic-induced lockdowns, customers are hitting the sector with a vengeance. However, the high growth is fraught with risks as well as new features and functionalities are being added to enhance the customer experience. It is only through a comprehensive eCommerce QA that online retailers can identify any bugs and/or vulnerabilities in their software platforms and pre-empt the devastating impact of hacking or poor performance.