In this article, we are going to look at the importance and types of website monitoring.
But before we do so, let us briefly look at the definition of website monitoring to help you understand how it works.
What is website monitoring?
Website monitoring is simply the means of testing the general performance, functions, and availability of a website or web service.
This process usually involves running the URL of a website through a website monitoring tool or service using either automated testing or Real User Monitoring (RUM).
When you are considering the number of things that might influence the performance, function, and availability of a website, you are going t realize that manual testing is isolated.
That is why more website experts are relying on Synthetic monitoring.
Why is website monitoring important?
Tracking the overall performance of your website is very important if you want to prioritize it.
And below are some of the reasons why you need to monitor your website.
1. To identify where the problem in your website is coming from.
Sometimes, the problem on your website might be coming directly from your web hosting provider or company’s end.
And with uptime website monitoring, you will be able to identify where the problem on your website is coming from. And this will help you to easily find the solution to it.
2. To ascertain the reliability of your brand or business.
Your website is your only visible shop or market on the internet. And if the customers (visitors) are not satisfied with the service you are providing them, they will never again click on your URL if it appears in their search results.
And for that reason, you must use website monitoring to ensure your website is working perfectly well.
3. To avoid losing funds.
If your website is monetized with Ads or you are selling products and services on it, people will be looking elsewhere if your site is taking much time to load for instance.
And this will bring about a decrease in your revenue and sales.
And for that reason, you must use website monitoring to be checking your website downtime and uptime every time.
4. To safeguard your content and data.
There are some security issues occurring every single time that might become a big threat in the end.
And in the process bring about the loss or change of your content and data.
And because of that, you should use website monitoring to regularly check your website in order to prevent potential security exposures from becoming massive issues.
5. To maintain your rankings in search engines.
Website issues like hacking, downtime, or even a poor user experience can negatively impact your rankings on search engines.
And for that reason, you should use website monitoring to ensure your website is safe at all times from these issues.
6. To understand visitors’ interaction with your website.
Website monitoring can give you an overview or complete insight into how visitors are interacting with your website.
And this will help to guide you in the end on a better way of making improvements.
Types of website monitoring.
Typically, website monitoring is going to fall into any one of the 3 categories we are going to see in this article. But keep it in mind that because of advances in technology, website monitoring may surpass the 3 types we are going to see below.
The 3 types of website monitoring are:
- Availability monitoring.
- Performance monitoring.
- Functionality monitoring.
1. Availability monitoring.
Availability monitoring is generally concerned with uptime, that is to say, ensuring people are able to visit a website when either from a link or when they enter the URL in a browser.
Also, availability may involve more or the following services:
- Basic availability monitoring. – The duty of the basic monitors is to check for a successful response or a specific response coming from websites and APIs that support HTTP protocol, and they may perform basic authentication. Basic availability monitors can also measure the timing and size of the response and issue alerts for response times are slow. HTTP(S) monitors do not load the content into a browser, but the monitoring service may check the response for the presence or absence of words, phrases, or regular expressions that are specified..
- Server availability – So long as a server or device recognizes TCP/IP protocol, a monitoring service can verify the availability of the device and selected ports. A monitoring service will be able to check the availability as frequently as once per minute, which helps to prevent costly downtime and lost productivity over the web or behind the firewall.
- Advanced Availability – The duty of these specialized automated monitors is to verify DNS records, check for proper configuration of SSL certificates, query databases, log into email servers, and download files from FTP servers.
2. Performance monitoring.
It is the performance monitor that checks the speed of a website or service. It does this by tracking the time of the connection speed both from the front and back end and also the time it takes for the browser to load.
Performance monitors may use Synthetic Monitoring or RUM technology. The reason is that RUM and the Full Page Check will provide the most comprehensive performance data set.
The Full Page Check provides detailed performance data for every element on the page.
Alerts for page errors, missing content, and slow performance are issued by the performance monitor.
3. Functionality monitoring
The duty of web Application Monitors or transaction monitors is to test a site’s functionality.
These specialized monitors employ script files that are able to interact with forms, site searches, shopping carts, and payment systems.
Transaction monitors interact with a web application the same way that regular site visitors do, and they typically verify the predictable “happy paths” for completing a task.
If an error is occurring or the performance drops, the system issues an alert to the support staff.
Note that, there are many different errors that can block users from using a web application that availability and performance monitors cannot catch.