Cyber Monday is Around the Corner—Are Brands Prepared?

By John Bates | 11/28/19

Deloitte’s annual Holiday Survey of Consumers found that online is king when it comes to the 2019 holiday shopping season. According to the report, consumers of all ages are more likely to rely on Cyber Monday than Black Friday and expect to spend nearly 60% of their holiday budget online. Given eCommerce’s popularity these findings aren’t terribly surprising, however, they underscore that online retailers cannot afford any downtime or performance glitches when Cyber Monday dawns.

Of course, companies are aware of this fact and have invested time and resources in planning for Cyber Monday’s accompanying traffic surges. But preparation doesn’t always equate to a seamless customer experience, even for companies with the deepest pockets.

Amazon’s infamous one-hour of downtime during its 2018 Prime Day cost the company an estimated $100 million in lost sales. And if a technology issue could catch Amazon by surprise, you can bet the average online retailer could also find themselves grappling with an unexpected performance problem—and missing out on critical holiday revenue as a result.

With that in mind, following are a few essential testing considerations that should be part of any Cyber Monday strategy:

  • End-to-end system validation. To be prepared, eCommerce providers must ensure their infrastructure can add capacity dynamically and quickly scale to react to surges in traffic. Some brands address this consideration by staggering campaigns rather than having everything land at exactly the same time.
  • Test performance—from the users’ perspective. Conducting performance testing in advance of Cyber Monday is a no-brainer, but if eCommerce providers aren’t looking at performance through the eyes of their users than they might be surprised by what occurs on the actual day. It’s imperative that companies adopt a customer-driven approach to testing that draws on AI to analyze every permutation of the user journey, as it’s the latter’s perception of performance that will ultimately make or break the holiday sale.
  • Continuously monitor—and act on this information. Online retailers need the ability to monitor performance before, during and after peak and be notified the instant a slowdown or glitch occurs. This can buy critical time to address technical issues before they have the chance to impact the customer experience. It’s also important that companies be able to drill into monitoring data—for example, seeing which groups of users were most impacted by a performance issue or plotting traffic numbers against load times and conversions.

For these and other reasons, Eggplant is the ideal testing partner for online retailers on Cyber Monday and throughout the year. Learn more about our intelligent, customer-driven approach to test automation and why brands like Sephora, Walmart and next rely on us to optimize the digital experience they deliver.

 

Topics: Customer Experience, website performance, ecommerce, Retail

John Bates

Written by John Bates

Dr. John Bates is the CEO of Eggplant, a visionary technologist and highly accomplished business leader. He's also the author of the book “Thingalytics: Smart Big Data Analytics for the Internet of Things.”

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