Few days back the launch of the iPhone 5 followed a similar pattern to Apple’s other previous product launches. And while Apple seems to be training the media to certain launch event expectations, it also seems to be training its Apple Store customers to expect closed doors at its e-commerce website.
Just as with the last major product launch (remember the “new” iPad?), the Apple Store was taken offline immediately preceding, and for some time after the media event. In this instance, for 7 hours. Keynote measurements of the Apple Store, a member of the Top Retailers (US) performance index, show the outage and captured the state of the website before, during and after.
A 7 hour outage for any online retailer is huge, and Apple’s outages appear to be intentional. The closing of the Apple Store in this instance raises interesting questions about managing customer expectations and online experience. Are launch event outages a defensive practice, or an intentional component of the overall launch experience? Is it worth handling the spike of non-buying visitors (pre-sales won’t be available until a couple days later) during the launch event, when most ‘lookey-Lous’ will likely get their fix through the subsequent media tsunami? At what point does opacity change from creating a sense of mystery to confusion?
The overall performance and availability of the Apple store is quite high, with it consistently ranking above the Index average for online retailers. Indeed, the past 6 weeks reveal improvement in Total User Experience Time and solid availability:
Apple appears to take Web performance seriously. Launch events such as today’s are consistenly ochestrated to careful detail. So while most online retailers strive for 5 nines, is there something to be learned from Apple? Could an intentional full outage (outside of planned maintenance/change) be a viable e-commerce strategy in certain circumstances? If so, when?
Article Source: http://www.keynote.com
In addition to evaluating customer experience on a subjective level, the Keynote research assessed seven factors related to the site’s service levels:
- High-Speed Response
- Dial-up Response
- Response Time Consistency
- Geographic Uniformity
- Load Handling
- Outage Hours
Three Bottlenecks That Block Traffic
Too many technical elements on a page: From small non-visual images to java scripts to unnecessary encryption, too many individual elements on a page can stifle performance
Java overload: The ubiquitous coding language is an important tool for developers, but every Java script can act like a tiny speed bump for browsers.
Proliferation of third-party tags: The rising number of third-party tags – DoubleClick ads and calls to third-party analytics services – can also hinder performance.
Mobile internet is another high-potential area for this market. Although the ability to book a car wirelessly has been around since about 2000, it’s still very much gaining traction. Mobile, of course, presents a whole new set of challenges for rental companies in terms of maintaining a positive user experience. Operating on a tiny screen will demand even more technical efficiency and optimization. But the opportunity is a great one, particularly for capturing busy business travelers on the go.
Testing Web applications before they become active has always been desirable in all environments. The user experience, however, has been largely untouchable. It is remarkable to have the capability to get to the granularity and perspective of the end-user in this regard.
Potential customers can now develop a page or script, and then test it locally on their desktop free of charge—while we do not know how long-term this model will be – it certainly will get some attention and garner support for Keynote in the short-term. This capability also serves to defuse the criticism of some competitors that only Keynote consultants can create Website monitoring transaction scripts.
Competitors will be hard-pressed to make this claim in the future. The “try before you buy” philosophy means buying decisions can be driven by Web application developers, potentially giving Keynote access to new markets.
Website monitoring services are used by individuals, ecommerce companies, web hosting providers, small businesses, etc. A monitoring service is usually used to see if your web server and your web site is running smoothly and to get a downtime notification.
To get an insight on the working of the a monitoring service for a web page, the service sends out requests from locations around the world to check if your services like HTTP, SMTP, etc are accessible. The accessibility of your web pages are determined according to the response codes.
Its been said that “you cannot manage what you do not measure”. It is necessary to also know what your visitors numbers were before changing the design of your home-page, and after changing the design of your home page. Monitoring every detail along with interpreting statistics lets you improve your website performance and achieve the goal of your website in a much better way.