Why software errors are killing your appPosted Feb 10, 2015 | 3 min. (554 words)
As a developer, how do you tend to handle software errors?
A surprising amount of software developers think that waiting for users to report errors is a good way to find out if problems exist in their applications. You might be reading this thinking “yeah, so what’s the problem?”
Here at Raygun, we found that only 1% of users ever reported issues, so even if you THINK you don’t have any issues, it’s likely 90-100x worse than you think it is.
Errors cost you money
When waiting for your users to tell you about software errors, by the time they do, it’s too late. That person has had a negative experience with your service, they’re doing you a favour taking the time to report the issue but only 16% of people will try a failing app more than twice. How many people were affected by this error? Specifically, who was affected? How much revenue or how many customers did we lose because of it? How long has it been happening? You’re completely in the dark.
You’ve probably lost more users than you realise, the ones who didn’t report the issues they experienced. They simply walked away and you didn’t even know it was happening.
When you’re struggling to replicate a problem and getting frustrated with a disgruntled customer sending you screenshots and minimal information, taking time out of THEIR day to tell YOU about a problem in YOUR software, it’s easy to see where all those hours go trying to hunt down errors.
Errors cost you time
What many companies deem an ‘adequate’ error tracking system is just something they have written themselves to fire off email alerts whenever an error occurs. No doubt you’ll be getting hit with lots of errors you don’t really care about and are missing the important ones. Information such as trend graphs, full stack traces, tags, search and error grouping make a dedicated error tracking solution superior. Your team wants to be building new features on your own software rather than maintaining your own error handling system. The illusion of cost saving is really costing you a significant amount of money, and many people giving error tracking tools a try find their own systems missed a lot of errors that were occurring in their applications.
Error tracking has become a sophisticated business in itself. As applications become more complicated and span across multiple languages and platforms, tracking them all in one place becomes an extremely important issue.
A dedicated error tracking solution like Raygun can give you full insights into crashes and problems in your software. The monthly costs for doing so are insignificant compared to the amount of cost savings this can give your business. If you have ten developers on your team and they all spend five hours a week looking into software bugs, that’s 50 hours of active development time lost to fixing problems. Far better to halve that time, rank errors in order of severity, get all the information you need to fix the problems faster and get back to building new features!