When it comes to software testing before release, many companies think that it’s enough to leave the testing to their software developers instead of seeking out a quality software testing service. After all, paying another company to find the bugs in an app, web portal or other software is an extra cost that can grow quite large depending on the quality of the software in question. Those very developers are the one programming the software—shouldn’t they know how to find its errors?

Unfortunately, thinking about the cost of software testing only in terms of an additional price tag fails to take into account what it costs to not to have your software tested by a specialist. In the long run, paying for a 3rd party software testing company to thoroughly test your software can actually be cheaper than handing the work over to your developers. When you’re calculating whether or not to have an expert test your software, make sure you’re taking into account all of the costs associated and that you understand the true value of software testing.

1. Cost of Lost Reputation

The worst has happened: you’ve released your app or other software to the market and, oops! It’s full of bugs! Now you have to pay the cost of your company’s reputation being tarnished. With a bad user experience comes negative reviews of your product, warning off other potential customers—potential money down the drain, and potential lost revenue from a website or software that does not work.

Not only are the bad reviews scaring off new leads, the current customers leaving terrible reviews are also leaving for a competing product. Many may even call customer service and complain—or demand their money back! Now not only are you paying the hypothetical cost of lost business, you’re paying the cost out of your already existing sales. Your customers’ trust in your company’s quality has been hurt, and when you’ve lost that trust, it’s a hard (and expensive) road to get it back.

2. Cost of Having to Go Back and Fix Errors

The cost of a lost reputation isn’t the only cost you have to deal with now that the flaws in your software have come to light. After all, you can’t keep a sub-par product on the market. While you’re busy cleaning up the bad reviews and trying to keep current customers from leaving, you also have to pay your developers to go back and fix the problems that incurred that cost in the first place.

Every moment your app, website or other software is down post-launch because you’re fixing code errors, you’re not making money from your software. Not only do you no longer have the income stream from your software being out on the market, you’re also spending money on the extra, unplanned paid-hours your devs require to go back, find the lines of code that are causing the problem, and fix them. The double-edged cost of having to go back and re-do work that should have already been done post-launch is a hefty price to pay.

3. Cost of Sub-Par Testing Services

Okay, you get it. You need to make sure you hire a software testing company. But why should you hire one of the more expensive ones? After all, there are plenty of companies that will outsource the testing to cheap, massive software testing operations in India or Southeast Asia. This way your software code can be reviewed by a 3rd party with trained eyes and you still don’t have to incur an expensive overhead cost.

Well, caveat emptor: buyer beware. You may save money on testing, and you may catch more of the bugs than your developers would have on your own, but often these outsourced testing farms are not run by experts, or people who know your company and software well. Instead of getting quality software testing service that uses proven testing strategies to test your software, you can get incomplete, one-size-fits-all testing that might not actually fit your software. Not to mention the language and cultural challenges, and time delay for the results thanks to the difference in time zones. All this means you could miss major problems that cause more downtime and expenses later on.

That’s why it’s always better to pay for…

4. Value of Peace of Mind

Choosing a company that specializes in high-quality software testing services saves you the costs associated with sub-par testing services. It gives you the value of knowing that your software is being evaluated for what it is, rather than given a cookie cutter treatment. You also gain the value of perspective, as trained software testers won’t have the same project blinders as your developers.Even when your developers know their stuff, working on the same project for a long period means that developers are often too close to their own work. It’s easy for errors to blend in with the rest of the code when your developers are used to seeing them.

Hiring a software testing expert also gives you the value of experience. Software testing experts have a different mindset when it comes to testing and know how to test for the more unusual actions a software user might take. The knowledge retention professional testers acquire from years on the job gives them invaluable insight into the testing process. For example, a dev might know to test that an item in an ecommerce store can be successfully added to a user’s cart and then purchased. A software testing expert will know to test that and whether or not items can be successfully added and removed from the cart over and over again, in multiple combinations, before finally being purchased two months later when it finally goes on sale.

Paying for the right quality of work is about more than just the cost of testing services. It’s about making sure you’re receiving the best overall value. Software testing costs don’t have to break the bank—and shouldn’t—but it’s possible to find quality software testing services that are both affordable and of good quality. You just have to balance the costs.