As a small business/startup, one of your wishes would be to really decrease the GTM (Go-To-Market) time and focus on the core (i.e. development) and have a QA team that actually does an independent testing.
Right now, in all probability – you are the one who is coding and testing (quite a disaster in making?) or you ask your friends to do the testing of your web app.
How about outsourcing your QA to the crowd? Well, Bangalore based 99tests brings crowdsourcing to software testing and serves as outsourced QA service to companies. The site went live on November 14th and has managed to garner 170+ testers who have logged 700+ bugs in the system (for three clients).
The way 99tests works is very simple – clients share a clear outline of testing scenario (supported OS/browser versions/use cases etc) and set the amount (gift coupon) – testers fight for the prize money and log as many bugs as possible.
Crowdsourcing – Long Term View?
Recently, US based startup, uTest (which is also into QA crowdsourcing) raised $13mn and the core business model behind uTest is that testers are compensated for bugs approved by the client.
As far as crowdsourcing part is concerned, it’d be interesting to see how 99tests keeps the love alive [Read : Wikipedia : Global Exodus of Editors Continues].
As far as the business model is concerned, 99tests charges a fix amount to clients (with certain promise on the number of bugs filed) and 70% of the client fees is distributed to testers participating in that project (80% among top three testers and the bottom 20% get as per their contribution in terms of number of bugs).
The major challenge for the team is ofcourse to grow the number (and quality) of testers, but given that this is started by professionals from QA industry, I’d expect them to do quite a bit of viral marketing.
Most importantly, the long term roadmap should be to get into higher pain point (which translates to $$$s) areas (like load testing, regression etc) as opposed to unit testing.
What’s your view on 99tests?
An Interesting View point: Why Crowdsourcing tools are not meant for Startups?