‘Performance Matters’ Series: The Consumer Internet Demands Speed and Reliability

surfing the web

They grow up so fast: surfing the web

In this series of posts titled “Performance Matters,” we’ve covered the importance of performant web applications across the spectrum from B2B SaaS apps to Online and Social Games.  Today we’ll discuss one of our largest customer segments here at New Relic:  Consumer Internet Services.

Remember, this whole “web thing” is GLOBAL

When you step back and think about the scale of internet usage, it is incredible! Massive amounts of data are consumed and processed all over the globe. And yet, there is an expectation that this data will arrive in your browser in a matter of seconds.  For the thousands of consumer sites out there, this is not a simple challenge. And it’s further compounded by silly things like the speed of light and millions of miles of distance between end users.

Visibility is critical

If you run a consumer internet site — a popular blog, retail store, travel site, etc.–you must focus on performance as a feature of your site. When your site is slow or when your customer is complaining, you must quickly identify the issue: Is it the app code?  The network? Is it a specific browser problem? Ignoring performance issues in favor of some new feature may be perilous to your brand.  Here are a couple of best practices we’re seeing with our customers who have high volume consumer sites (taken from a small sample of hundreds of the top 10K consumer sites using New Relic):

1.  Optimize your code at the browser level

Most of the delay seen in web performance happens at the browser.  Make sure your CSS is clean, images are optimized, and JS is managed properly.

2.  Look into a CDN – Content Delivery Network

More and more of our customers are using CDNs from Amazon, Akamai, and others. If you have customers all over the world, then push your content out on the network to all those places, so performance is fast and responsive.

3.  Use a tool that gives you visibility into the whole stack

Shameless plug for our solution:  You can’t fix a problem if you don’t see it or know that it is there.  Solutions like New Relic give you that visibility.  Make sure you choose a solution that has RUM (real user monitoring) as well as App Performance Management.  You need to see the whole picture, with real – not synthetic – data.

Treat performance as a feature

The successful companies we work with keep performance on their list.  They don’t leave it to chance.  Consumers have very high expectations on the websites they visit; don’t take your traffic for granted — make sure site speed is on your list of key metrics!   With over 12,000 active customers, we’re here to help make the web faster and more performant.




Chief Marketing Officer of New Relic. Love SaaS. Love Data. Love New Relic. View posts by .

Interested in writing for New Relic Blog? Send us a pitch!