Software Bugs Threatened Black Friday and Cyber Monday Success for Top Retailers

Peter BasilePeter Basile
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Are bugs eating into holiday shopping revenues?

Black Friday and Cyber Monday are two of retail’s most important shopping days. Many turn to e-commerce sites to avoid long lines (and the possibility of being trampled by discount-crazy shoppers) so more and more emphasis is placed on website experience and quality to prepare for the holiday shopping season.

As a leader in the testing industry, Applause and its community looked at how some of the world’s top retailers did in delivering a quality experience to website goers. The results show the need for stringent testing in real-world scenarios.

Despite the best-laid plans, 22 of the top retailers still had more than 1400 bugs on their e-commerce sites – 350 of which were rated as valuable or severe. The retailers in question operate in a range of categories including department, apparel, and drug stores.

Bugs were found in three main parts of the customer journey:

  1. Purchase intent – Shopping cart, product pages, and user accounts
  2. Product search – Homepage search, reviews, search and catalog, and deals
  3. Company and Customer Service – Store locator, company page, shipping and returns, and customer service

You can find the full breakdown of the amount of bugs found in each part of the website in the graphics below.

breakdown of bug issue by function

This year’s Black Friday e-commerce sales grew by 23.6% compared to last year, accounting for $6.22 billion. And Cyber Monday set records with $7.9 billion worth of sales. With so much money at stake, retailers can’t afford to overlook any possible issues on their websites. Testing will play a key role in ensuring bugs are found before they reach the hands of customers. Companies should look to real-world testing to find the bugs that can only be uncovered in-the-wild with real users on real devices in real locations.

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