Products

Problems
we solve

We can help your business

Request a Free Demo / trial

Insights

Insights
20 February, 2024

Herding Cats: Performance Testing Strategies for 2024

performance testing is like herding cats

The world of performance testing is continually evolving, and in 2024, it has evolved to be more challenging than ever. Technology is more complex, customer expectations are higher, and an increasing number of people and departments need to be involved to make performance testing effective. Yes, performance testing is essential and can be quite fun, but getting it all set up is the closest thing to herding cats I’ve ever experienced.

The ongoing global digital transformation (for want of a better phrase) has put performance front and centre.

Companies are moving an ever-increasing number of processes online, with more of their solution exposed to demanding customers who won’t tolerate laggy or buggy software. Whether you order at a McDonald’s screen, check stock for a click-and-collect order, or use smart scan at the supermarket, technology has to respond instantly.

Digital transformation has also placed a greater emphasis on real-time processing instead of batch jobs. Again, examples abound, from financial payments and transactions to personalised e-commerce experiences to supply chain monitoring.

Plus, the underlying architecture is increasingly complex and disparate, with myriad systems working together to provide an end-to-end solution.

Fortunately, there are ways to minimise the pain and maximise the gain. In this insight, I’ll shine a light on four strategies that you can use on their own, or in combination, to make your life easier and help you execute successful performance test cycles in 2024.

1.    Increase Your Focus on User Experience

Performance testing in 2024 is all about ensuring users get a great experience with your solution.

Previously, the goal was often to ensure that your solution could handle sufficient load and not degrade too much under peak traffic.

But now, your users expect, even demand more. They need pages that load fast, apps that respond instantly, and no crashing or lagging when trying to do even the most trivial tasks. It used to be that you could focus on your critical processes, but now all your responses must be timely and stable, or your user experience will suffer, and that could lead to negative consequences for your business.

In 2024, everyone is online all the time, using lots of different devices, from laptops to watches. A site that loads quickly on a desktop but crawls on a mobile phone is a no-go. And with so much competition out there, users will jump ship to something better if your solution is slow. They’re not going to wait around, and they’re definitely not going to be shy about letting the world know your app’s performance is poor.

You need to focus your performance testing on what users are actually experiencing, not just the server-side performance. It’s not just about crunching numbers, testing API endpoints and checking off technical benchmarks. It’s about asking, “Will someone using this solution from a coffee shop Wi-Fi or their couch be happy with how it works?” This means looking at load times, how smooth scrolling is, and if there are any annoying delays when interacting with the solution.

2.    Shift to Cloud-Based Performance Testing

Cloud-based load testing takes the hassle out of setting up and running tests compared to traditional on-premises testing.

Going with cloud options means you can start testing your solution without the pain of setting up your own servers or worrying about updating software.

The cloud is all about flexibility. You can quickly scale your testing up or down depending on how much traffic you need to simulate without buying and maintaining additional hardware.

Cloud-based testing also lets you generate from difficult cloud hosts and many countries, anytime, without having to set up servers yourself. This is a huge benefit in simplification and time-saving for anyone with a solution used in multiple regions.

Then there’s the speed factor. With cloud-based testing, you’re just a few clicks away from starting a test. No waiting around for equipment to arrive or software to install or update.

On top of that, cloud platforms often come with built-in analytics and reporting tools. So, you can set up and run tests fast and get quick insights into how your app is performing.

In short, cloud-based performance testing cuts out a lot of the prep work and waiting, letting you focus on what really matters—making sure your app can handle whatever is thrown at it.

3.    Embrace Professional Test Tools

In 2024, professional performance testing tools will serve your needs better than open-source options and probably cost less in the long run.

I’ve spoken many times about how open-source performance tools are not worth the extra time, hassle and hidden costs, how they require you to knit together many different tools, lack support, and require more effort to extract meaningful results.

With professional tools, however, you get a support team ready to help you sort out any tricky problems. This is useful when you’re up against tight deadlines and need answers fast. These tools also come with comprehensive user guides and training, making it easier for your team to learn how to use them effectively.

Professional tools pack a lot of advanced features that let you dive deep into analytics, generate detailed reports, and test your solution under a wide range of scenarios and conditions (like Network Virtualization with the LoadRunner suite, for example). They’re also designed to work with lots of different technologies and platforms, so you’re covered no matter what you’re working on.

Security and compliance are other big pluses. I have seen an increase in the number of security audits prior to tool purchases and the much greater depth of these audits, checking for security credentials. Professional tools are built (by professional software houses, not hobbyists) to protect your data and help you meet industry standards, which is crucial if you’re in a field like finance, retail, healthcare, or any sector where you value your data security, and regulations are tight.

4.    Unlock The Power of Service Virtualization

Service Virtualization, also known as mock services, lets you simulate parts of an app or system that aren’t available or are too costly to use during testing.

This approach means you can test how different parts of your system work together under load, even if some are external services you don’t control—for instance, your credit card provider or an SAP backend system.

Imagine you’re trying to test drive a car, but half the parts aren’t even there yet. You wouldn’t get a real feel for how the car drives, right? Service Virtualization is like having all the missing car parts appear so you can take it for a proper spin, even if those parts are still being built or are too expensive to use for a test run.

Unlocking the power of service virtualization in performance testing lets you test early and include all/more of the total solution, which saves you time and money and helps ensure your solution is production-ready on time.

Conclusion

In 2024, solutions are more complex; everyone expects them to work perfectly on any device. And because of this, performance testing is more important and challenging than ever.

In this insight, I’ve shared modern trends and best practices that help to make the whole process smoother and more effective. Like using professional tools instead of open-source to save time and money or how cloud-based testing makes everything much easier and faster.

In 2024, a slow or buggy solution just won’t cut it. Users expect quick, smooth interactions; if they don’t get them, they’ll find an alternative. The four strategies above will help you achieve that goal in less time and with less expense.

Stephen Davis
by Stephen Davis

Stephen Davis is the founder of Calleo Software, a OpenText (formerly Micro Focus) Gold Partner. His passion is to help test professionals improve the efficiency and effectiveness of software testing.

To view Stephen's LinkedIn profile and connect 

Stephen Davis LinkedIn profile

20th February 2024
test management tools are the foundation

Build a Foundation for Testing Success: Choosing a Test Management Tool

Test management tools give unparalleled views of software development progress, provide quality assurance and peace of mind, and can generate positive returns on investment – more than just paying for themselves. This insight discusses some of the contenders and gives recommendations.

risk v reward

Risk v Reward: Are Test Management Tools Worth It?

Are test management tools worth the money? It’s easy and common to assume there are more impactful ways to spend project funds than test tools. But does this downplay the important role a professional test management tool can play in success?

The evolution of test management tools

Test Management Tools: Past, Present, and Future

Understanding where things have come from can often help inform where they are going. The story of test management tools goes back at least three decades and this insight offers a precis of their past, present, and future…

5 automation trends

Software Test Automation: 5 Important Trends for 2024

Software test automation has evolved massively over the last few years; gone are the days of flaky tools, gargantuan setup effort, and scripts that require constant human intervention. The integration of cutting-edge technologies and methodologies has redefined the role of test automation within the software development lifecycle.

Automate Everything With One Tool

Software Testing Simplified: Automate Everything With One Tool

With so many software test automation tools to choose from, companies often cherry-pick a suite of low-cost options to test their full landscape. Unfortunately this is highly problematic, adding unnecessary complexity, increasing costs and undoing any of the purported benefits.

UFT One Automation Heavy Lifting

Test Automation: 6 Reasons UFT One is The Only Tool You Need

In the fast-paced world of software development, functional testing is critical to ensure your solutions perform as expected. Unlike manual testing, which is time-consuming and prone to human error, test automation streamlines the testing process, offering a faster, more accurate, cost-effective solution. There is an array of automation tools available, but OpenText UFT One is the standout choice, offering a complete solution for all your needs.

cut testing costs

Cut Software Testing Costs With These Essential Tactics

Balancing rigorous testing with cost-effectiveness is a challenge. You can test too much, take too much time, and spend too much money on testing. Luckily, there are proven ways to refine your testing practices, increase efficiency, and cut your software testing costs.

skimping on performance test tools

Why Skimping on Performance Tools Is a False Economy

Performance tool cost is likely to be less than 10% of the performance testing budget, yet many still think that slashing this figure saves money. Common sense tells us that if you do not spend on quality tools, you will spend more on people. In this insight, I look at why investment in professional performance test tools is so important.

The Human Cost of Software Failure

Horizon: The Human Cost of Software  Failure

The Post Office Horizon scandal destroyed lives and livelihoods and is rooted in defective software. This insight looks at the scandal from a testing perspective and serves as a cautionary tale for all involved in deploying large-scale IT systems.

Insights

Search

Related Articles

InsightsTrending

To get other software testing insights, like this, direct to you inbox join the Calleo mailing list.

You can, of course, unsubscribe 

at any time!

By signing up you consent to receiving regular emails from Calleo with updates, tips and ideas on software testing along with the occasional promotion for software testing products. You can, of course, unsubscribe at any time. Click here for the privacy policy.

Sign up to receive the latest, Software Testing Insights, news and to join the Calleo mailing list.

You can, of course, unsubscribe at any time!

By signing up you consent to receiving regular emails from Calleo with updates, tips and ideas on software testing along with the occasional promotion for software testing products. You can, of course, unsubscribe at any time. Click here for the privacy policy.