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How To Clear The Last Hurdle To Great Website Performance

This is a guest post by Jim Rapoza, Senior Research Analyst & Editorial Director, Information Technology

Having covered web performance management and optimization for many years now, I’ve seen most of the techniques, strategies, and technologies that organizations use to get the best performance out of their online systems.

It’s a cliché, but it is pretty common to see businesses throw the kitchen sink at the issue of website performance and reliability.

High-end and expensive load testing tools that simulate massive traffic floods of a site? Check.

Complex application performance management systems that provide visibility into how the network, servers, and other systems are impacting performance? You got it.

Code and server optimization practices? Real-user monitoring? Content delivery networks? Check, check, check.

All of these tools and strategies certainly fit within best practices, and Aberdeen Group research shows that leaders in website performance leverage all of these things. But businesses can be  doing all of this and still run into issues that can slow down their sites or even make them completely unavailable.

That’s because there’s that whole “internet” aspect of websites. Having a well-managed and optimized site is all well and good, but if an issue occurs on the internet that impacts your site, it can still result in bad performance or downtime.

In the end, the internet is a big, complex, and diverse organism. A backhoe cuts through a line in New Jersey and your site in Boston goes down. A traffic issue at an internet hub in the Midwest can make your site slow and unresponsive to west coast visitors, and so on.

Traditionally, for problems like these, businesses have tossed their hands in the air and said, “Well, there’s nothing we can do about that. It’s completely out of our control.”

However, a new performance management technology could change this, and make it possible for businesses to control the internet in much the same way they control their website.

Called Internet Performance Management, it is a technology designed to provide visibility into performance problems on the internet, and take action by controlling Internet connectivity to avoid these issues. Internet Performance Management systems are constantly monitoring traffic across the Internet. When there is a problem on a route that a business uses for its websites and services, it can quickly and proactively switch to a faster route, saving the business from slow or disruptive services and keeping visitors happy and revenue growing.

This makes Internet Performance Management a welcome tool in the arsenal of both new and novice website administrators and businesses that follow all the best practices to optimize their sites. Both will see an improvement in their site performance and reliability simply by avoiding internet-based issues.

Given the challenges that businesses face in website performance today, this kind of advantage can’t be underestimated. The research shows that 43% of website visitors are unsatisfied with website performance, which is no surprise, given that 78% of organizations report that they have four or more website disruptions a month. This, despite the fact that many businesses are actively working to manage website performance using traditional tools. But, as we’ve seen, those tools can’t detect and manage all issues.

However, when we looked at businesses that use Internet Performance Management technologies, we found a number of key benefits. They are 2.3 times more likely to see faster website performance and 30% more likely to have very or extremely satisfied users of their sites and services.

There’s nothing worse than having a problem that you can’t see or control that impacts the ability of your organization to succeed. With tools like Internet Performance Management, businesses can take back control and finally manage all aspects of their website performance.

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