With Black Friday and Cyber Monday right around the corner, performance testing early will ensure you have your best sales day of the year, not your worst. Part of having a successful Black Friday is knowing what peak traffic is, when it occurs, and how to prepare for it.
What is Peak Traffic?
What exactly is peak traffic? What does it mean? Peak traffic, also known as peak load, is a term used for the maximum number of users on a website or application at a certain time. Having too much traffic at one time can cause various performance issues. If the website infrastructure is not suited to handle the increased traffic, server delays can lead to unhappy customers and lost revenue.
When Does Peak Traffic Occur? Black Friday, Cyber Monday, or Anytime.
Examples of seasonal peak traffic include Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and tax-free weekend. You can usually expect a high volume of users during this time, but there is no guarantee that peak traffic won’t occur at other times throughout the year. To be prepared for expected and unexpected traffic increases, it’s important to prioritize performance testing.
Here are 5 tips and tricks to prepare your application and teams for peak traffic:
- What’s your history with peak traffic? Start early!
- Test your resources
- Prepare for the worst
- Track your end-user experience
- Learn and improve for next time
1. Start early! Check your peak traffic history.
It is never too early to start testing for expected traffic increases like Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Showtime is no time to rehearse. Here are a few helpful benchmarks to have on hand.
- Traffic load during your peak seasons from previous years
- Percentage increase from your last peak season
Did you know that last year 63% of consumers started shopping for deals before Thanksgiving? 54% of shoppers were mostly or entirely done with holiday shopping by the time Cyber Monday came around.
2. Test your resources: LoadRunner Cloud.
Are you confident your performance testing tool will ensure site reliability every day of the year? LoadRunner Cloud can simulate network behavior to achieve real user experience testing. That’s why engineering teams have put their confidence in our solutions for all these years.
3. Prepare for the worst!
It is important to check your peak traffic history to prepare for those expected traffic increases, but it is equally important to build on your testing strategy to make sure you are prepared for unexpected traffic as well. Be sure you have a robust performance testing strategy and a solution you trust. Any day could be Black Friday!
On Black Friday 2021, traffic spiked 162% compared to normal volume.
4. Tracking your end-user experience.
So, how did you do? Tracking your end-user experience is crucial. A few metrics you can use to determine if your day was a success include:
- New to returning visitor ratio
- Bounce rate statistics
- Number of purchases made
- Time spent on your application
- Application load time
57% of users expect a site to load in 3 seconds or less. Does yours?
5. What did you learn? Improve for next time.
You can use the above metrics to celebrate your successes and pinpoint areas of improvement. Choose a few metrics that performed the lowest and propose a strategy to ensure those numbers improve the next time you experience peak traffic. Continuously improving and adapting is critical, especially in the performance testing industry.
Start your performance testing now to avoid any unexpected setbacks going into the peak traffic season. Using LoadRunner Cloud will make your peak testing easier, faster, and more cost-efficient this holiday season.
Check out these additional resources for more information on preparing for peak traffic.