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Nov 19 2013

Countdown to Black Friday: 2 Performance Tips to Ensure it's a Success

The holiday season is closing in on us again and the largest shopping day of the year is getting close - Black Friday (or shall we be honest and say Thanksgiving Day), followed by Cyber Monday, followed by a month+ long frenzy of holiday shopping that extends all the way through the first of January. That is A LOT of shopping. 

For any online retailer (web and mobile alike), this day can be a make or break to ensuring that their most profitable season starts off just right. 

Our top 2 tips to ensure a successful Black Friday-Cyber Monday

1- Get your Web and Mobile Sites and Apps Ready ASAP.

  • Don't wait til your site crashes, don't wait until the day before.
  • Making any kind of significant development changes or upgrades too close to Black Friday should be a huge red flag.
  • Need a security upgrade? Do it now, preferably during the lowest traffic times of your site. 

2- Avoid the Possibility of Downtime like the Plague!

Preparation means no perspiration. Seriously. No one wants to start off the holiday profit season with a site crash and a boss (or bosses) nervously hovering over their (now perspiring from pressure) tech team wondering why no sales are being made, why the site is down or keeps crashing during peak usage hours.
Cause when you don't run performance tests.....
Let's take a moment to remember the infamous Coke Chase crash of 2013. Coca Cola paid $4 MILLION dollars for a 60-second, coveted commercial spot for the Super Bowl. Yep, 4 million buckaroos. The commercial was interactive, meaning the commercial encouraged watchers to vote on the Coca Cola website following their commercial.
Now, had load testing, bottleneck pinpointing and fixes been done properly, this would have been one awesome experience. Instead, the average load time for the Coca Cola site to load was...62 seconds....2 seconds longer than their actual commercial air time, and then the site just crashed.
Note- the average time a user will wait for a site to load is less than 3 seconds. Only because it was CC did users hang on a bit longer. If it was your mobile or web site or app, users would have left almost immediately, leaving you with a most unsuccessful holiday season. Bah Humbug indeed.
This is the gentle depiction of what I imagine happened during this all too public, embarrassing snafu to one of the world's largest companies. Yikes.
BlazeMeter says- keep your boss happy and your web n mobile sites up by load testing for Black Friday
Better? Run load tests, pinpoint bottlenecks, test, fix bugs and retest.
Monitor site performance 24/7, starting right now. 
Seriously. Why would you take a chance? As Nike (they run performance testing on a regular basis!) would say, Just do it.

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