A website performance impacts on customer experience, customer retention, and business transaction and conversion rate.
As such, a website performance monitoring solution can be used to give insights into the experiences users have on the website or with the application, their user’s location, device and browser.
A website performance monitoring solution allows one to collect all relevant data that can be used to optimize the applications and website pages and make sure expected levels of performance and quality are met. By analyzing the user’s interactions with the website and web applications in real-time one is able to determine metrics such as page load times, conversion rates, bounce rates, on pages visits and exits.
Why it is necessary to monitor website performance
Businesses and organization are nowadays relying on their online presence to engage their customers and visitors. However, delivering a meaningful user experience has become a challenge in the complex digital environment consisting of a diversity of technology, devices, networks, fragmented audience and applications.
To keep the users satisfied and engaged, the organizations must use a form of website, and web app testing and monitoring techniques, which address end-user experiences. Most of the performance metrics monitored should include speed, browser compatibility, as well as the business and technical issues such as scalability and stability.
IT professionals require network visibility to help them identify and detect signs and symptoms of performance and availability issues. By monitoring and testing websites, businesses can get insights into how easy or difficult their website visitors navigate through the apps and website pages, and this can help them take necessary measures to improve the user’s experience. In addition, seeing how the apps load and perform can help businesses address issues and take the remedial actions to improve the application performance, efficiency, availability and reliability.
Some of the most critical metrics needed include the application performance metrics which impacts on the user experience, business transactions, productivity and revenue. By getting the real-time insights such as the throughput and response times of an application, the organization will see the statue of the application when it is in use.
Why it is necessary to monitor website performance in a virtualized environment
Performance of the web apps and websites is dependent on several factors and the overall performance is largely influences by the slowest process.
The website applications and their components in cloud and virtual based systems are often moved and re-provisioned to cope with ever-changing demands of the modern web. Managing and supporting the modern websites and applications is further complicated by the
1. Inter-dependencies and website performance
Inter-dependencies across application, infrastructure and endpoint may sometimes lead to outages, latency, packet losses and impact negatively on end-user experience.
2. Web content and code
With more code residing on the browser than on the server-side, the response time is un-optimized on the browser end, and there could be many redirects, DNS lookups, no caching, issues downloading large files. Monitoring will show how much time is spent downloading content, loading events scripts, resolving DNS and so forth. The developers should fine tune their browsers following the best practices and test then across devices, platforms. Test various browsers will show which works best with a certain website
3. Communication components and configurations
The modern website infrastructure comprised of a lot of components. A part of these components may be located in different countries away from the main server. The way they are installed and configured greatly impacts on the website response time, and the overall speed will be determined by the weakest link which is often influenced by the communication and configuration of the various components. As such, gaining visibility of these configuration and communication will help determine the root cause of the slow performance.
4. effect of demand peaks on web performance
The performance may slow down during peak times if the infrastructure is no scaled to handle more than average rates. Despite that most of the peak time will only last for a short time, this might have long-lasting effect on the user experience.
5. Responsive web designs
Mobile friendly websites have become very popular and these are built with responsive web design techniques which can create performance issues when resources are not properly managed. These can cause features such as images to load differently depending on whether a user is using a desktop, a tablet or a mobile, leading to some pages loading slowly on some platforms and faster on others.
7. IT Infrastructure changes
8. Third Party services
Integrating third-party vendor plugins impacts on the overall performance, this is more so when many third-party vendors are used to provide increasing functionalities of a website. Understanding the performance of the number of queries and their impact on the website or web applications will help one take the necessary actions, either combine the queries or optimize them to improve the performance
9. Complexity of websites
Complexity of the website and website application due to the ever-growing mix of cloud based computing, self-hosted infrastructure and third-party services. In addition, applications use a variety of technologies distributed across the cloud or data centers and different networks. This increases the number of potential points of failure while makes troubleshooting more challenging.
The website monitoring provides visibility into a website and applications performance. The monitoring determines if the website is displaying the relevant content as fast as possible, loading pages at consistent speeds, and does not suffer outages. This helps organizations in make sure that the technologies are functional, available, stable, and that they are supporting the organization’s business objectives.
As can be seen there are so many factors that can impact on website performance. Some of these are internal and can be fixed in-house, whiles others are as a result of issues with third-party services. By getting an insight of the different components of a website, it is possible to pinpoint where the problem is, rectify and keep track of what is going on. It also helps in eliminating guess-work and hence let the administrators concentrate on what is important in ensuring that the website performance is at its best.
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