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    5 Performance Testing Tips to Meet the Holiday Rush

    Believe it or not, the holidays are almost upon us, which means that the holiday shopping season is also here. With the majority of holiday shopping now taking place online – last year’s online gift buying increased 7 percent – shoppers hold the power for whether or not your website has a successful holiday season. The best thing to do to ensure your e-commerce site is ready for the holiday shopping season is to test website performance automatically and frequently. In this slideshow, BlazeMeter’s Michael Sage has identified five performance testing tips that will help you meet the holiday rush.

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    Are You Ready for the Holiday Rush?

    Click through for five performance testing tips that will help your website meet the holiday rush, as identified by BlazeMeter’s Michael Sage.

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    Pay Attention to the Big Event

    If your e-commerce site is having a flash sale or is launching a new product, expect that there will be isolated, increased traffic events. Test specific web pages and the overall lifecycle, to make sure each web page a shopper goes to – from the item page to the checkout – is able to field increased traffic. Lifestyle apparel brand Stance recently had a huge event – the launch of a sock line custom-designed by Rihanna – and used event testing to help 10,000 simultaneous shoppers per second have a positive, non-disruptive shopping experience. Knowing the problem areas before shoppers arrived let the sale go smoothly, with not one customer experiencing website downtime.

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    Be Mindful of Abandonment Rates

    Think about the last time you were gift shopping. How many stores or websites did you go to? With the sheer amount of e-commerce sites available at the click of a button, your website needs something that sets it apart. Believe it or not, website functionality could be just the thing for customer loyalty, as 50 percent of online shoppers say they will not return to a site if they experience slow speeds or get frequently kicked off. Think of the ROI that a functional website will give – as shoppers who do not experience downtime are more likely to purchase and not go to a competitor – and make sure to test before the holidays.

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    Make It Part of the Workflow

    A pushback to implementing website and load performance solutions may be that keeping up with it is too tough. However, a solution is to implement an open-source compatible and cloud-based performance testing platform that pairs with DevOps to continuously test complex scenarios. This eliminates expensive upfront charges and tests to continuously run in the background, meaning no disruption to developers’ workflows.

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    Test the Right User Journey  

    It is not enough to simply have a website testing system in place – the right user journeys must be tested. Before implementing, make sure the website and data is up to date, so tests are not being run for pages or workflows that are no longer in use.

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    Learn from Last Year

    Look at the reports of website traffic and holiday sales rates from last year. Were shoppers abandoning their carts due to longer than necessary checkout times? Did flash sales load? Analyzing behaviors and traffic patterns gives good insight into what to focus on for this year.

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    It Is Not Too Late

    The best part of performance testing is that it can be implemented immediately, for this holiday season. Once implemented, services like BlazeMeter can quickly pinpoint what to test, and build and run tests at scale to identify problem areas. Unlike legacy testing solutions, there is zero ramp-up time. Website performance issues will not have a negative impact on this year’s holiday sales, and performance testing software can still ensure that 2015 holiday e-commerce goals are met.

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