In a world hit hard by the Covid-19 pandemic, most consumers opted for a digital-first lifestyle, and most businesses had to come up with digital interfaces to survive and grow. But growing in sync with sudden and massive customer demand could be challenging. These days, a shopper’s patience is quickly exhausted. According to experts, nearly 79% of people who experience a dissatisfying visit are less likely to buy from the site again, and 64% choose to buy from another online store. This is a huge loss, especially for small companies trying hard to build a loyal customer base.
Additionally, tech-savvy customers now want more from digital-first businesses in terms of site speed, stability, user interface and user experience (UI/UX). But the question is, how can these be tracked in real-time?
For digital-native brands and companies in the cloud, testing their websites’ and apps’ performances for all combinations of browsers and devices is tough. Industry experts think it is practically impossible for most organisations, big or small, as new operating systems (OS) and software updates come up every day.
The need of the hour is a real-time, easy-to-access testing platform for developers to test their websites and apps across all browser and OS environments. That is precisely the pain point San Francisco- and Delhi-NCR-based software testing startup LambdaTest is trying to address.
Set up by serial entrepreneurs Asad Khan and Jay Singh in June 2017, the startup offers a SaaS-based testing platform used by testers, developers, product managers, webmasters and anyone working in the webspace. The platform enables users to run their tests faster and more efficiently on a cloud infrastructure to keep their products synced with fast-paced tech updates.
“There is a clear gap in the market, and development and testing teams across the globe are struggling to scale up their resources to match faster-paced development cycles,” says Khan, CEO of LambdaTest.
A look at the market size seems to affirm his observation. According to Technavio, the software testing market touched $34.49 Bn in 2020 and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of more than 12% in the next four years. The industry’s growth is driven by innovative and agile software testing capabilities across various browsers, devices and operating systems, particularly in mobile testing and application programming interface (API) testing areas.
Real-Time, Cross-Browser Testing Platform For Changing Times
The startup says its platform enables developers to test their websites’ look, feel and performance on more than 2,000 browsers (such as Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge and Firefox), operating systems (Android and iOS 14.1 and 14.2) and various other device combination environments. It also provides live analytics, screenshots, geolocation tagging and more.
But how does it work?
The LambdaTest platform is built using the Microservice architecture, which structures a single application as a suite of small services. Each of these services runs its own process and communicates with lightweight mechanisms. As the structure depends heavily on updated tech stacks like Kubernetes, Apache Kafka, Ansible, Docker, Chef and others, the platform benefits from open source technologies.
The startup has told Inc42 it helps developers and testers reduce their dependence on in-house infrastructure and free up DevOps teams from building, maintaining and scaling up the infrastructure for testing purposes alone.
“With the help of LambdaTest, these teams not only increase their browser coverage but also reduce their overall test execution time,” says Khan, adding that businesses can save close to 40% cost compared to what it requires for in-house testing infrastructure.
Revenue is earned through monthly/annual subscriptions, with monthly prices varying from $15 to $99 (for web automation) and $158 (web and mobile testing). The amount also depends on the number of devices used at the same time.
The company claims that 350K+ developers and testers from startups, SMEs and big enterprises are currently using its platform. Among its most prominent clients are GoDaddy, Newsela, Capgemini, Eureka, Scholastic, Deloitte and Brother.com, which use the real-time software testing platform to run thousands of manual and automated tests online. LambdaTest claims to have recorded close to 14 Mn+ tests on its platform as of December 2020.
The startup has also raised $9 Mn from Sequoia Capital, Blume Ventures, Leo Capital and Entree Capital.
What Is Driving Business Growth?
“Post-Covid, every business wants to be digital,” says Khan. With lockdowns and remote work in place, more businesses are moving towards digital transformation, but that has to be done well. “If the user experience is poor, customers will not return, and companies will lose business,” he adds.
This new normal has triggered a surge in users, the company claims. As a result, it has scaled up its infrastructure and expanded the team to cater to new customers and push out more features faster.
“We have launched tonnes of new features during the pandemic. For instance, we have introduced a dedicated desktop application called the LT Browser to help with responsive testing. Plus, we have a new developer- and tester-centric community for knowledge exchange and a newsletter to keep our users updated on the latest and the greatest in testing,” adds Khan.
The company claims to be growing at 8-10% month on month in the past 10 months across all growth parameters like website traffic, signups and revenue. At the time of writing this article, the company had about 427K monthly active users (MAU), with the majority coming from India and the US, according to Similar Web.
The startup also says its business is profitable in terms of unit economics. To sustain this growth in the coming months, it is now optimising costs, improving operational efficiency and bringing in the latest technology to maintain overall margins.
Besides LambdaTest, other Indian players in the software testing space include Testmatik, Fleek IT Solutions, BrowserStack and VTest, among others. Globally, companies like Optimizely, Sauce Labs, Kobiton, TestComplete and TestingBot dominate this space. Plus, one sees a slew of new-age tools such as Hotjar, CrazyEgg, Mouseflow and Contentsquare.
The company, however, says its excellent support system is its USP. “There are multiple areas where we are ahead of our competitors, be it overall performance, UI/UX, availability of devices (smartphones and tablets),” says Khan and also stressed on the effectiveness of its agile support team that works closely with its customers.
Sharing the roadmap ahead, Khan says the company is building an integrated testing ecosystem that will bring all development and testing processes to the cloud. “In 2021, we will be working on scaling up our platform so that we can grow at 3x to 5x at the very least. We will also add more product lines to help development and testing teams fast-track their efforts.”