In this blog post, we’ll have a look at some of the best bug tracking tools on the market—complete with features, pricing, rating, and best use cases.
Even the best pieces of work have flaws.
Bugs are unfortunately inevitable whether or not you have the most expert coders working on a piece of software.
And left unchecked, those bugs can grow into bigger problems for you and your customers.
After all, less polish means a less pleasant customer experience.
The only way around that is a process to keep any software bugs in check—with a defect tracking tool.
Let’s dive into it!
22 Best Bug and Defect Tracking Tools in 2023
Here are the best bug tracking and defect management tools in 2023.
Report bugs and defects straight into your favorite bug tracker, without leaving your website.
Marker.io is a visual bug reporting tool made for agencies and agile software development teams.
Simply install the website widget, and starting reporting bugs or collecting user feedback.
Screenshots, annotations, and all technical metadata will land directly into your favorite project management tool like Jira, Trello, Asana, GitHub, ClickUp, and others.
Say goodbye to messy emails, spreadsheets, and PowerPoint.
There is a better way!
Bug tracking for all stakeholders—with powerful annotations
Marker.io is not only a standalone bug tracking system—it doubles as a bug reporting tool, allowing you to file reports straight from your website.
This means that even for less technically-savvy people, it’s easy to report a bug:
- Find a bug, and click the button.
- Add some annotations on the webpage, and fill out a report with details.
- Click on “Create issue”—done!
Check it out in action:
All reports created this way will land:
- In Marker.io’s very own bug tracker, for your clients or non-technical stakeholders
- In your favorite project management tool, for your dev team and project managers.
This means you can keep your clients out of your PM tool, but still update them via the dashboard or automatically via email notifications.
Advanced bug reporting
Efficient bug tracking starts with powerful bug reports.
With the Marker.io plugin, every report automatically contains:
- Source URL
- Environment info
- Console logs
- Session replay, so you can see exactly what the user was doing when the bug occured
With all this information at hand, it’s so much easier for developers to reproduce—and fix—issues from their bug tracker!
2-way integrations with project management software
Marker.io’s main feature is its 2-way sync with popular defect tracking tools.
As a project manager, you constantly transfer client bug reports from your inbox into Jira, Trello, Asana, ClickUp… you name it.
This takes up an incredible amount of time, it’s prone to mistakes, and it’s just… boring.
In an ideal world:
- Client reports should automatically appear in your issue tracking tool
- Project managers should only triage and prioritize said reports
- Developers should remain in the PM tool, doing what they do best—fixing bugs.
A defect management process like this is only possible with Marker.io.
Thanks to 2-way sync, as soon as an issue is marked “Done” in, say, Trello—that same issue will also be “Resolved” in Marker.io.
Check it out:
As a developer, when you receive a bug report, your first action is to try and reproduce it.
But even with all the technical data in the report—you sometimes still fail to understand what’s going on.
If only you could see exactly what the user was doing when the bug occurred...
Well—Marker.io's toolkit includes session replay for that reason.
Straight from your PM tool, simply click the “Watch replay” link.
You’ll then be able to watch the last 30 seconds (or more) before the bug report was submitted.
Check out session replay in action:
We can clearly see this user journey:
- Clicked on "About Us"
- Scrolled down & up
- Tried several times to click on "Contact Us"
- Gave up and reported a bug with the Marker.io widget.
Make sure the Marker.io widget is embedded on the website(s) or app(s) you are working on, and enable session replay in your widget settings. It’s as simple as that!
Ready to start collecting bug reports and feedback without leaving your website? Try Marker.io free for 15 days
Software development with continuous deployment.
Jira is a classic bug tracking tool in the industry.
The Jira suite is built from the ground up to fit any space it needs.
It has tons of automation options, custom workflows, traceability, and incredible versatility for software development.
With that being said, it may be a bit too feature-dense for organizations with simpler needs than you’d need.
Overall, it’s an excellent pick for software development teams who want to invest in defect tracking software—with lots of support and community behind it.
Want to collect website issues directly into Jira? See how Jira/Marker.io integration works
Drag-and-drop editing and project management.
Next on our list of bug tracking tools is Trello.
Everything in Trello begins with the Kanban style task board. The tool tracks bugs much like it manages other tasks.
You can use a template to organize issues according to who reported them, whether they are resolved or in progress, and display bug reports in various formats.
But the process often gets complicated when there are multiple issues with many screenshots and feedback from different members.
Information can get lost in transition because you have to manually input the data into Trello from the website or app you’re working on.
Want to collect website issues directly into Trello? See how Trello/Marker.io integration works
Project management software with a plethora of customizations.
Much like Jira and Trello, ClickUp helps you assign tasks to team members and streamlines communications between partners.
You can sync ClickUp with Google calendar to further make things easier to manage. It’s also excellent for defect tracking.
Clients can take a screenshot of the issue and leave feedback either by email or by creating a new task on ClickUp and adding the details there.
Want to collect website issues directly into ClickUp? See how ClickUp/Marker.io integration works
Easy-to-use, web-based issue tracking tool.
Asana is excellent for organizing tasks and sticking to project deadlines.
Although it isn’t primarily a bug tracking tool, developers often use it for that.
This software lets you make subtasks and assign them to specific developers to resolve different issues–which is great.
But a major problem with Asana is that you have to keep switching between the website you’re working on and Asana to see the problems and fix them visually.
Want to collect website issues directly into Asana? See how Asana/Marker.io integration works
Issue tracker with version control.
At this point, GitHub is practically a household name in the software space, and a staple of the development process.
For those uninitiated, Github is an open-source software development tool with a massive community.
It’s made a name for itself in the space as an excellent tool for project collaboration between multiple developers.
As for bug tracking, it’s a great pick. Create repositories, commit updates, and keep track of changes with version control—an excellent tool for software teams.
With that being said, be prepared for a learning curve if you choose GitHub, as it’ll take some time for your team to get the hang of it.
Want to collect website issues directly into GitHub? See how GitHub/Marker.io integration works
All-in-one suite and issue tracker.
GitLab, as you might’ve guessed from the name—is an issue tracking tool similar to GitHub.
It’s great for facilitating project collaboration and tracking bugs; where they differ is that GitLab operates as an all-in-one solution.
This can be both an advantage and a disadvantage: if you’re looking for a more tailored, feature-heavy experience, then GitLab should be your go-to, but that doesn’t discount GitHub by any means either.
And just like GitHub, expect a learning curve if you decide to go this route.
Want to collect website issues directly into GitLab? See how GitLab/Marker.io integration works
Defect tracking tool with unlimited client users.
Teamwork is great for managing projects because it offers you different viewing formats such as Gantt charts and panoramic views of projects.
You can add your bug report and feedback on issues as tasks on Teamwork.
Your clients can add these directly, or you can assign a middle-man to fetch the information from emails and then organize it in Teamwork.
And if that’s your jam, Teamwork also offers time tracking features—so you can measure exactly how much time you spend on a project or task.
Want to collect website issues directly into Teamwork? See how Teamwork/Marker.io integration works
Bug tracking tool with epics and milestones.
Shortcut is great for larger teams because you can easily manage multiple software development projects at a time.
It also gives you features such as a quick overview of projects, filtering issues according to teams, and integrations with GitHub.
Shortcut has specific bug reporting software. With that, you can highlight specific projects, send reminders to developers, or look deeper into certain issues.
But it doesn’t have a feature to directly input feedback from websites to Shortcut.
Want to collect website issues directly into Shortcut? See how Shortcut/Marker.io integration works
Easy-to-use and accessible issue tracker.
While other bug tracking tools might get their strengths from the extensive feature lists, Linear takes a different approach.
The main draw for Linear is the ease of use and highly-targeted approach they take.
There’s no extra flak that comes with the tool; it’s rather lightweight and extremely easy to use. The only downside to this is that it isn’t as customizable as other tools are.
Want to collect website issues directly into Linear? See how Linear/Marker.io integration works
Customizable and adaptable project management tool.
Out of all the tools on this list, Notion might stand out the most as it’s not even designed for software development. At least, not exclusively.
Notion is more of a project management tool than a pure bug tracking tool.
With that being said, it’s a strength and a weakness of sorts. Notion can work well for teams with more lightweight needs.
It’s also a great tool that can be used for more than just software dev. For those who need a bit heftier of a solution—it might not be the one for you.
Want to collect website issues directly into Notion? See how Notion/Marker.io integration works
Issue tracking in a simple, visual display.
Monday.com has a smart dashboard that organizes different bug tracking tasks on the screen.
Its visual display is excellent as it helps you overview the progress of each task in real-time.
You can prioritize the bugs according to developers, progress status, and clients, or add more filters and custom fields.
It supports various media formats such as videos, images, doc, and Excel files. This helps your teams get all the required information about issues quickly.
Want to collect website issues directly into Monday? See how Monday/Marker.io integration works
Easy-to-use project management tool with request forms.
Wrike works well as bug tracking software, although it is primarily designed to be a project management tool.
Here, you can get bug reports from websites by using a request form. These forms have custom fields for all the information your developers might need to fix the bugs.
You can also prioritize tasks and assign developers with just a click, and then automate reminders.
Want to collect website issues directly into Wrike? See how Wrike/Marker.io integration works
Bug tracking with Jira & Trello integration.
Bitbucket is quite a bit like GitLab in many ways.
It’s a great bug tracking tool with a distinct draw over a few of the previous choices: its unmatched integration with Jira and Trello.
Pair that with the great price it comes with and ease of use, and it’s not too hard to see why a team might use Bitbucket as their defect tracking tool of choice.
Want to collect website issues directly into Bitbucket? See how Bitbucket/Marker.io integration works
Defect management tool with Gantt charts, boards, and burndown charts.
Backlog is a project management tool for virtual teams.
The platform offers project management, issue tracking, and version control solutions—which makes it an ideal choice for many software teams and dev agencies around the world.
The best part about Backlog is that it integrates with many of the tools you’re already using: Slack, Google Sheets, Jira, and others.
Open-source, lightweight issue tracking system.
Bugzilla is the issue tracking tool of choice for many top software companies.
Because it’s an open source bug tracker, it’s easy to adapt, customize, and scale depending on your needs.
Bugzilla’s top features are:
- Advanced search—to find exactly what it is you’re looking for;
- Categorize issues based on products and components;
- Milestones—to keep the entire team on track.
If you don’t mind implementing and updating your own bug tracking system, Bugzilla might be the one for you.
Open-source bug tracking software with custom fields, email issue creation, and more.
Redmine is next on our list, and much like Bugzilla, open-source, too.
The tool offers a little extra flexibility when compared to Bugzilla. One of it’s key features is the ability to create new issues via email.
While it does not have a dedicated customer support or help desk, you can receive help from the community via the unofficial Slack workspace or on the Redmine forums.
Web-based project management tool with discussion forums and wiki.
Fogbugz is a customizable project management system that comes with plenty of features:
- Task management
- Bug & issue tracking
- Custom workflows
- Powerful search (docs, wikis, bugs…)
- ..and more.
It’s an ideal solution for Agile teams or working with Scrum, Kanban, or Scrumban methodologies.
Free, simple issue tracker.
Mantis is another bug tracking tool that’s open source.
It boasts a “delicate balance between simplicity and power”. It’s ideal for web dev agencies thanks to:
- Email notifications to keep your clients in the loop
- Access control, so customers don’t mess up everything in your tracking system
- Plenty of customization options
Try out one of their demos, then simply download and host the tool on your own server.
Software quality management tool.
ALM/Quality center is the go-to solution for software quality management. The platform offers:
- Defect tracking
- End-to-end traceability
- Live analytics
- …and more.
ALM also integrates with many application lifecycle tools—which makes it a great addition to your existing toolkit.
Open source issue tracking system with wiki, roadmap, and milestones.
Trac believes bug tracking tools should impose as little as possible—and that’s exactly what it’s doing.
It’s a minimalistic bug tracking system that offers:
- Version tracking (with a Git integration)
- Wiki markup
- Links and references between bugs, tasks, and changesets
- Timeline to keep track of projects
- Roadmap for upcoming milestones
If you’re not bothered by having to do your own custom installation—Trac might just be the tool for you.
22. Zoho Bug Tracker
Simple, fast, and scalable automated bug tracking.
The Zoho suite offers a plentiful of project management tools, and Zoho Bug Tracker is one of them.
It’s easy to use and comes with the entire Zoho suite—if you need more than just issue tracking.
With automation rules, you can trigger updates in bug fields or assign specific team members to issues. You can also enable email notifications to keep your clients in the loop.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a bug tracking tool?
A bug tracking tool is a type of project management tool for software development.
Bug tracking tools help keep track of various bugs and issues that come up during the application lifecycle management, from internal QA to user acceptance testing and production.
In short: they help you maintain quality and save time from the get-go.
What are the key features of a strong bug tracking tool?
What features even come with a good bug tracking tool?
Any tool worth using comes with (at least) these features:
- Overhead project management
- Analytics tools
- Reporting & issue submission tools
A good tool will help a team collaborate over fixes, report issues, analyze and keep track of the bugs in their system and push out updates to solve those bugs in a streamlined manner.
Which tool is best for bug tracking?
Most bug tracking tools come with a whole suite of features tailored to a certain organization type.
What works for you also depends on your project management method (Scrum, Agile, Kanban…).
That’s why there’s no one best choice; there are plenty.
You just have to pick the one that’s best suited for your business.
If you love customization, have to deal with complex workflows and task management systems—and prefer to keep your clients out of your tools, Jira is best suited for your needs.
On the other hand, Teamwork has unlimited client seats and offers issue tracking templates specifically.
Finally, if you prefer lightweight and uncomplicated, we recommend Linear (that’s our personal favorite!).
Whichever bug tracker you end up using—remember that Marker.io integrates with many of the tools on this list.
It is the best solution for your clients to give website feedback without flooding your inbox.
Can I use Excel as a defect tracking tool?
Of course! Excel is a great way to track bugs and issues when you’re just getting started. It can also be used for test management.
With that said, you’ll soon run into a couple of project management issues:
- No easy way to provide visual feedback: images and Excel don’t work well together
- A little too simplistic, and limited by fields being text-only
- It’s overwhelming: never-ending rows can feel like an insurmountable amount of work for developers and managers alike
When you have multiple clients, we highly recommend switching to an actual project management tool.
How do you do bug tracking?
- Set up a bug tracking project.
- Prepare workflows for reports with the following labels: To do, Assigned, Scheduled, In progress, and Done.
- Create dedicated issue types: Bug, Design Feedback, and Ideas are great starting points.
- Create a system to prioritize bugs: High, Medium, and Low priority.
- Prepare efficient communication channels: Slack, email, or a dedicated client portal like Marker.io.
- Resolve bugs and notify reporters.
Whichever tool you’re using, you might find it useful to use one of our bug report templates.
And if you end up using Jira, you’ll love our Jira bug tracking guide.
What’s the difference between defect tracking, issue tracking, and bug tracking?
These terms are often used interchangeably, but they basically mean the same thing. They only differ in scope:
- Bug tracking refers to coding and technical issue management. For example, “this function does not fire properly on a Safari browser”.
- Defect tracking refers to the software not conforming to business requirements. For example, “charts in the analytics page load too slow”.
- Issue tracking refers to general issues that come up during software development, and encompasses both defects and bugs.
In other words, bug tracking and defect tracking are a subset of issue tracking.
And that about wraps up our list of bug and defect tracking tools, from the feature-dense packages to the lightweight ones and everything in between.
Hopefully, it helped you find a tool that fits your needs.
Think we missed a tool?
Let us know which tool you prefer on Twitter or via e-mail, and we’ll see about adding it to our list of top picks!