When it comes to determining the effectiveness of a website monitoring solution, its included features are paramount to revealing its true abilities. While there are literally hundreds of free and paid monitoring tools available to system administrators, if you’re seeking a solution capable of providing detailed reports and monitoring critical performance metrics, then you must seek out a tool with several universally important features. Although the following nine features are only a handful of vital functions, they offer an excellent reference point for making a purchasing decision.
Feature #1 – Geographic Monitoring Locations
As your website audience grows, the geographic location of visitors will likely grow alongside it. Remember, the further your audience is from your website server, the slower the response time. By monitoring the performance of your website from various locations throughout the country (and world), you’re able to determine exactly how your website responds to requesting browsers from across the globe. If you notice a significant drop in performance based upon geographic locations, you may want to consider implementing a CDN, or Content Delivery Network, solution.
Feature #2 – In-Depth Diagnostic Capabilities
While the actual monitoring abilities of a website monitoring solution are essential for its success, its ability to diagnose errors and issues is paramount for swift error resolution. When an error report is gathered, it’s imperative that your monitoring solution be capable of running in-depth diagnostic tests to help isolate specific errors within all components. As a general rule of thumb, the greater the diagnostic capabilities of a website, the faster a resolution may be found and implemented.
Feature #3 – Content Rendering Checks
Although a website may be up-and-running, it doesn’t necessarily it’s rendering web pages in an accurate manner. One of the most destructive situations for any website is inaccurate content rendering. However, with a website monitoring solution, administrators are able to continuously keep track of not only the speed of page rendering, but also the accuracy. Nothing can ruin an online reputation faster than inaccurate content rendering. Therefore, this is an imperative level of monitoring all websites must implement.
Feature #4 – Website Availability
While the primary function of a website monitoring software is to ensure the full operation and performance of an enterprise, there are many instances when a single page can become unresponsive. This proves extra problematic if this page contains critical business elements, such as an order form or a registration form. Therefore, it’s important that your website monitoring software be able to determine not only the entire website availability (uptime), but also specific webpage availability. The most effective monitoring techniques to monitor the performance of each page, as well as monitoring the dynamic content within the pages, such as video, image and application files. Structure the monitoring tool to send out specific alerts should one or all of these elements fail to respond within the assigned performance threshold.