Testing SaaS Applications: Challenges and Best Practices

March 16, 2023

Testing SaaS Applications Challenges and Best Practices

As per Statista’s projections, the Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) industry in France is predicted to exhibit a yearly growth rate (CAGR 2023-2027) of 9.14%, leading to a market size of €10.21 billion by 2027.

No SaaS solution succeeds without thorough SaaS testing.

If you’re developing one, you need to know how to do it. This article covers different test types, challenges in testing SaaS applications, and best practices for successful implementation.

What is SaaS Testing?

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SaaS testing is a process where software solutions hosted on the Internet are evaluated to see if they can meet their objectives effectively.

Essentially, the objective of conducting this test is to ensure that your outsourced software solutions can achieve their full potential and meet their objectives. It’s also an excellent way to measure its effectiveness.

Let’s say you’re a business owner who recently subscribed to a new cloud-based accounting software. You need this software to manage your financial records, transactions, and reports effectively. However, you notice that there are occasional glitches and errors in the software’s performance, which affects your work productivity and efficiency.

In this case, SaaS testing is necessary to evaluate the software’s functionality, performance, and usability. Through this, you can identify the root cause of the software’s issues, and the testing results can help the software vendor fix the problems and improve the software’s overall performance.

In short, SaaS app testing can help you to ensure that the cloud-based software you’re using can meet your business needs, function optimally, and achieve its full potential.

The Different Types of SaaS Testing

There are several types of SaaS testing that you should be aware of, as each has its own unique purpose.

Startechup SaaS services

Before you use any manual tests or automated SaaS testing tools, here is what you need to know about each type:

Usability Testing

The most common type of SaaS testing is usability testing. This test evaluates how end-users interact with the software, including its user interface and user experience. It’s also an excellent way to ensure the software is easy-to-use, user-friendly, and accessible.

Performance Testing

From the name itself, performance testing is designed to measure the software’s capabilities and speed. It evaluates how well it can handle heavy traffic and large data sets.

Load Testing

Load testing is similar to performance testing, but it’s specifically designed to measure how the software behaves when there is heavy traffic. Doing this helps you identify any issues that can occur when the software is used by many people at once.

Integration Testing

Integration testing is another essential type of SaaS testing. It evaluates how well the software integrates with other applications, systems, and components.

Functional Testing

Functional testing is a type of test that ensures all features and functions included in the software are working correctly. It’s an essential component for any SaaS application development process as it helps identify any bugs and errors in the software before its release.

Unit Testing

Unit testing is a form of test that evaluates individual software components or modules. It helps developers identify any bugs and errors before the application goes live.

Security Testing

With hundreds of cyberattacks happening daily, you must ensure your SaaS application is secure to protect your data and systems. Security testing evaluates the security features of the software, as well as its authentication and authorization protocols, to mitigate any security risks.

These are the different types of SaaS testing you should consider when evaluating any software solution. Now, let’s discuss some of the challenges you may face while testing any SaaS applications.

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Manual Testing vs. Automated SaaS Testing

While automated testing processes are an attractive option for many businesses, manual tests are still a viable option.

Automated testing methods involve creating test scripts which can be a time-consuming process, particularly when it comes to generating appropriate test data. For instance, a manual test that might take 10 minutes to complete can be done in just 2 minutes with an automation tool. However, writing a script to automate the test can take anywhere from 10-15 minutes.

On the other hand, manual testing provides comprehensive results as it requires a human’s intelligence and cognitive abilities to detect subtle nuances in the software’s functionality. While it can be time-consuming, error-prone, and subject to human biases, it allows more creativity and exploratory testing.

Ultimately, your SaaS application testing method depends on your testing requirements, resources, and user experience. Automation saves time for repetitive tasks, while manual testing is more creative in uncovering hidden defects.

SaaS Testing Challenges You Should Prepare for

Even with all the features and availability of automated testing tools today, you may still face challenges while testing your SaaS application.

Here are some of the most common SaaS testing issues:

1. Compatibility Issues

With users accessing the SaaS testing tool from diverse devices and browsers, it is necessary to test across multiple platforms and hardware. But keeping up with all those pieces of equipment can be costly.

Since SaaS applications rely on third-party services and APIs, compatibility issues can arise. For instance, if the application is designed for one operating system but tested on another, it could lead to errors.


Your cloud service provider can help you mitigate this challenge by offering a platform that works with compatibility testing across diverse devices and browsers. Collaborate with them to test the applications on all versions of operating systems and devices before release.

2. Short Delivery Cycles

Speed is a crucial factor in SaaS development and testing processes. As technology advances, customers expect faster product delivery, and any delays can lead to disappointment.

With SaaS applications frequently releasing new features and bug fixes, developers have become increasingly pressed for time to effectively test the application. Handling failed automated test cases also takes up a lot of time, making it difficult to meet tight deadlines.


If you want to optimize your SaaS testing process, it is highly beneficial to incorporate automated tools into agile testing. Automated tools can accelerate the entire procedure and make sure that all key elements are tested sufficiently.

Additionally, encourage your team to create a test plan that takes into account the time and resources needed for testing each task.

3. Data Security & Privacy

Similar to mobile app testing, one of the SaaS testing challenges involves the security and privacy of customer data. SaaS applications are storing an enormous amount of sensitive customer data, and it is the responsibility of test teams to ensure that no data breaches occur.

Protecting the privacy of test data can be quite difficult when integrating and migrating a SaaS application. Furthermore, with numerous users engaging in various activities within the software system at once, it is often hard to guarantee customer confidentiality every time you deploy new product updates.


Maintaining data integrity and security is critical for SaaS companies. To secure customer data, you must focus on automated testing that runs continuous security checks and tests. It involves creating a secure test environment and using encryption techniques to keep customer information safe.

4. Accessibility Issues

With no control over the infrastructure, network, and other external components, it can be difficult for testers to replicate real-world scenarios that may lead to uncovering issues.

The challenge with SaaS applications is the complex network of users, services, and cloud providers that you must take into account while conducting accessibility tests. Also, you need to ensure that the application is compliant with accessibility standards such as Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG).


To overcome these SaaS testing challenges, you must build an accessibility toolkit that is designed to find and resolve user interface issues. This will help ensure that the application is optimized for every user. Moreover, incorporate automated accessibility tests into your software development lifecycle to ensure that the SaaS application is compliant with accessibility standards.

5. Maintenance and Upgrades

As SaaS applications require regular maintenance and upgrades, the testing team must keep up with the changes made. This can provide an added challenge to their work.

Frequent upgrades and releases can enhance the consumer experience. However, this gives your Quality Assurance (QA) team less time to ensure the SaaS system is safe and reliable. Further testing must also assess all licensing elements, including application function, user count, and usage with each new release.


Using automation testing tools, you can accurately and quickly perform regression testing after each upgrade is released. This will help reduce the amount of time and resources needed to ensure that all changes are tested effectively.

Also, cloud testing services can help you assess the performance of your applications on different browsers, devices, and operating systems. This will help ensure that no compatibility issues arise with your upgrades.

Now that we understand the obstacles, let’s review the optimal approaches for SaaS application testing.

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SaaS Platform Testing Best Practices

Any software testing strategy begins with a good foundation. It means using well-defined and documented procedures to ensure that the testing process is consistent and efficient.

To streamline the software testing of your SaaS applications, follow these best practices:

1. Establish a Comprehensive SaaS Testing Methodology

A SaaS testing methodology should include a set of processes and procedures that define how the testing will be conducted. It should also define the goals, objectives, and expectations of each stage of the SaaS testing cycle.

2. Employ Automation Tools Where Possible

Automating your tests will help you run more test cases and produce results faster. Also, testing automation promises to reduce costs, improve the accuracy and reliability of software tests, and identify bugs quickly.

3. Define an Accurate Testing Environment

To ensure your applications are tested across multiple environments, you must define a testing environment accurately. Cross-browser testing will help ensure that the application functions correctly when deployed in production.

4. Conduct Early SaaS Testing

As much as possible, conduct early software testing to avoid complications that may arise when making changes later. This will help you identify and resolve issues quickly while also improving customer satisfaction.

5. Don’t Ignore Security Concerns

Security is always a top priority for software development teams. Thus, ensuring the data migration and integration processes are secure and compliant with regulatory standards is critical. Security notifications and alerts should be tested regularly to keep your system secure.

By following these best practices, you’ll get to maximize your SaaS testing efforts and ensure a smooth-running application experience for all users.

For an added layer of confidence, consider seeking the help of an expert to use SaaS testing and marketing tools, especially if you’re a startup. These tools will help you market your software and build a loyal customer base. With continuous testing during development, you can ensure that the SaaS application is bug-free before its launch!

5 Best Testing Tools for SaaS Apps

Once you’ve established a comprehensive SaaS testing methodology and environment, the next step is to find testing tools that best fit your needs.

Here are five popular testing tools you can use to ensure your SaaS application is up-to-date and secure:

1. PractiTest

PractiTest is a test management tool that provides end-to-end test solutions, issue management, and requirements management capabilities.

The benefits of using this tool:

  • Enables seamless collaboration between testers and stakeholders
  • Provides real-time visibility into the status of tests and defects
  • Offers integrations with popular automation testing tools

2. qTest

qTest is a scalable cloud-based test management tool that helps organizations manage and track multiple test cases. Their qTest test management allows you to plan, collaborate, and create a report of your test cases and results.

The benefits of using this tool:

  • Provides advanced reporting and analytics capabilities
  • Offers integrations with popular automation testing tools
  • Allows for seamless collaboration and communication between testing teams
  • View project status and progress via dashboards

3. JMeter

Open-source load testing tool that is widely used for testing the performance and scalability of web applications. It is a powerful tool that can be used to simulate heavy loads and measure the system’s performance.

The benefits of using this tool:

  • Provides a wide range of testing capabilities, including load testing, stress testing, and functional testing
  • Offers advanced reporting and analysis capabilities
  • Supports multiple protocols, including HTTP, HTTPS, and FTP

4. QMetry

QMetry is one of the SaaS testing tools that offer comprehensive end-to-end testing capabilities. It has an intuitive and user-friendly interface that enables you to create, execute quickly, and track project progress, as well as traceability.

The benefits of using this tool:

  • Provides advanced reporting and analytics capabilities
  • Offers integrations with popular test automation tools
  • Enables seamless collaboration between testers and stakeholders

5. Burp Suite

Burp is a go-to choice for penetration testing due to its versatility and ability to blend manual and automated procedures into one integrated security test. Its robust features make it an ideal tool for uncovering vulnerabilities.

The benefits of using this tool:

  • Provides advanced scanning capabilities for detecting vulnerabilities in web applications
  • Offers advanced reporting and analysis capabilities
  • Enables seamless integration with other testing tools and platforms.

Develop Your SaaS Application with Us!

In a world of advancing technology and digital transformation, you need a reliable partner to help you build your SaaS applications.

At StarTechUP, we have the right team with years of experience in developing secure and robust cloud applications. Our service not only includes industry expertise but also SaaS application testing, so you can be sure that your software application is ready for the market.

Contact us today to find out how we can help you leverage the power of cloud technology. Our team is here to provide you with a customized solution that meets your business needs and budget!

About the author: Andrea Jacinto - Content Writer

A content writer with a strong SEO background, Andrea has been working with digital marketers from different fields to create optimized articles which are informative, digestible, and fun to read. Now, she's writing for StarTechUP to deliver the latest developments in tech to readers around the world. View on Linkedin