We’re just a few short months away from Black Friday, the biggest online shopping period of the year. Are you ready for it? More importantly, are your websites and applications ready for it? Last year, about half of all shoppers ditched their devices and went out to brick and mortar stores to finish their holiday shopping. However, that was last year. And as we’re all well aware, A LOT has changed since then. You can bet that fewer consumers will be going out to their favorite stores due to the Covid-19 pandemic. In fact, a study carried out by Statista in May of this year already showed that consumers were more interested in shopping online this year. Similarly, a survey from Radial showed that while consumers were not going to significantly change their holiday spend, they were definitely looking to increase their online shopping. No surprises there, I suppose.
However, that means millions of more consumers will be shopping online in our “new normal” economy. Do you know how many users visited your website last year? You might want to consider planning for a two-fold increase, or even more. Or have you already taken into account the predicted increase in traffic? If so, have you carried out load testing on your sites and applications with these metrics in mind to ensure you have the capacity to handle more visitors? If you haven’t already, now’s the time to get proactive and start performance testing for the Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping period. And with companies vying to win over consumers with an exceptional online customer experience, it’s more important than ever. If your site hits critical mass and shuts down, it’ll be more than just customer loyalty you’ll be losing.
No Company, or Network, is Safe
It seems that every year, without fail, there are a handful of large retail websites that buckle under the heavy visitor load and end up crashing for some period of time. Even a few minutes of downtime can cost companies thousands, or millions, of dollars in sales. A few hours of downtime? Forget about it. That’s enough to ruin the holidays (and any prospect of quarterly revenue growth) for even the biggest brands. Furthermore, the loss in potential sales goes well beyond e-commerce shoppers and includes customers visiting brick and mortar stores who simply want to know if a product is available in their local store. This fact is especially important as more shoppers will be looking to order online and do curbside pickup in lieu of shopping in-store. If they can’t purchase online or know when their order will be ready to pick up at curbside, your customer service department will definitely be hearing about it – and you’ll probably make the news, in a not so positive way on social media.
Companies rely on their websites and networks to generate revenue and support all sorts of various business operations. You need a tool that proactively test their environment for bottlenecks, points of failure, and weaknesses. Even if you think you’re safe from the usual attacks, your website could become overwhelmed by an over-abundance of visitors. Do you know what the threshold of simultaneous visitors is on your website? If not, it’s time to take a look at LoadView so you can find out before the biggest shopping days of the year are upon us.
Cloud-based Load Testing: Real Browsers. Real Results
LoadView utilizes virtual load injector machines from nearly 20 locations around world to emulate hundreds or thousands of users accessing your websites, applications, web services, etc. Whether you’re testing your SaSS software, online shopping cart paths, APIs, or any other web services, LoadView provides the features to test the capacity of your systems. Running simultaneous user interactions, with real browsers, gives real insight from the user perspective into how your services respond under varying load levels. Our customers know that what they are testing are the most realistic scenarios and trust our solution to deliver every time.
LoadView also captures a video record of the website performance, allowing you to watch how load and render times are affected during load testing. The waterfall chart generated along with the video capture lets you view the response times of every single element on your website when you hit peak traffic, so you can determine which elements need to be optimized.
Internal vs. External Load Testing
It’s vital that you obtain an external perspective of your services so that you are not lulled into a false sense of security by only relying on performance data from within your own network. LoadView adds the value of load testing your website from multiple external locations around the world to ensure that your services and websites are available to all of your customers, no matter where they are located. This is especially critical when preparing for the Black Friday shopping period. Distributed load testing can also show you how third-party elements, such as content hosted by CDNs, perform from different geographic regions. Bottlenecks and failures could occur at any point and seriously impact the user experience. Even the most simple of user transactions can include hundreds of interactions and individual components.
Scripting User Paths and Behavior: The EveryStep Web Recorder
The EveryStep Web Recorder is a point and click scripting tool that can record user interactions with your website, recreating those critical actions that you need to run hundreds to thousands of simultaneous users at once against to ensure they hold up against the heaviest of levels of traffic.
Furthermore, after creating your script, you can adjust user behaviors to simulate how an actual user browses your pages and applications. For example, choosing the Normal User option slows down the page interaction by adding random delays to simulate a real user. Choosing the Maximum option runs the scripts as quickly as possible. This is akin to running a stress test. And lastly, you can customize your delays for mouse movements, click speed, and text typing speed. Learn more about configuring User Behavior Profiles.
Combine Monitoring for Comprehensive Insight
After running your load and stress tests, you can use the same scripts to monitor those critical user scenarios in production with our monitoring solutions. With Dotcom-Monitor, you can set up alerts and get notified immediately if something goes wrong. You’ve put in all the time and resources to ensure a great positive experience, now make sure it stays that way! Dotcom-Monitor integrates with many third-party tools that your teams are probably already using and can ensure your web pages, applications, APIs, and other web services are always performing and available to your customers. Make downtime a thing of the past.
Black Friday 2020: It’s All About Being Proactive
Ultimately, control over an IT environment is only as good as the visibility you have into system performance, and if you have ever experienced unexpected outages, then you know how valuable solutions like LoadView and Dotcom-Monitor can be. At the very least, LoadView can provide you with baseline acceptable performance metrics when preparing for Black Friday. At the most, you can determine the peak load of your website and avoid potential downtime and headaches.
Don’t be another downtime statistic. Don’t waste any more time and start load testing to see how your systems perform before the biggest shopping days of the year. Unlike other expensive tools in the market today that require costly and dedicated infrastructure, LoadView is cost-efficient and can scale to meet even the most extreme traffic demands. We have multiple pricing plans, as well as an on-demand option, that fit your specific load testing needs.
Try LoadView today and ensure your site is ready for the rush and traffic of the upcoming holiday shopping season.