Why Do CDN Users Want Real User Monitoring?
If you use a CDN, then you already care about performance. Chances are, you’re constantly looking to optimize performance and improve your users’ online experience.
To meet your performance needs, CDNs have grown their offerings over the years, providing crucial infrastructure and automated optimization functionality to make your applications and websites fast and available for your users. As CDN services have become more powerful – offering dynamic object caching, image optimization, advanced load balancing, and millions of servers around the world – they’ve also grown in complexity.
Historically, some CDNs have provided organizations with tools for front-end optimization (FEO), but they haven’t offered real-time performance measurement and monitoring. Other CDNs have offered some version of real user monitoring (RUM) in their analytics packages, but without providing actionable insights for organizations to understand where to focus optimization efforts or the relationship between performance and revenue.
As a result of this solution gap, organizations have longed for a simple solution that would navigate them through the complexities of CDN configuration, optimization, and correlation to business metrics.
There are many benefits to marrying real user monitoring and performance diagnostics with content delivery. Here are just a few:
- Get real-time visibility into user experience.
- Identify third-party bottlenecks.
- Understand the correlation between your site’s performance and business metrics like session length and revenue.
- Determine which resources to cache.
- Prioritize performance improvements.
Let’s take a deeper dive into each of these benefits.
1. Get Real-Time Visibility Into User Experience
When it comes to performance, ignorance isn’t bliss. Numerous studies have shown that performance directly affects revenue. If your CDN isn’t optimized, you could be leaving money on the table.
But what is the exact relationship between the performance of your site, your CDN performance, and your revenue? mPulse for Akamai provides the capabilities – such as real-time analytics, session analysis, page grouping, and third-party analytics – to immediately signal what impact the changes to your CDN configuration have on your users’ experiences, and your bottom line.
2. Identify Third-Party Bottlenecks
mPulse for Akamai provides real-time performance analytics, unprecedented visibility, and insights into site performance and user behavior. RUM waterfalls, session analytics, page grouping, and third-party analysis tell you where slowdowns are happening, which third parties are causing delays, what optimizations are required, and how these optimizations should be prioritized.
3. Understand Correlation Between Performance and Business Metrics
mPulse for Akamai is powered by SOASTA DataScience, which provides predictive analytics to answer questions about how your performance metrics correlate to business metrics. The What-If dashboard uses RUM data to derive an accurate prediction of revenue, session length, and session duration based on changes to session load time. Using this predictive data, you can decide how aggressively to cache resources or implement FEO best practices in order to maximize revenue.
4. Determine Which Resources to Cache and Prioritize Improvements
It’s not enough to just point out performance problems. Blindly optimizing your pages isn’t efficient or effective. Today’s DevOps and BizOps teams are looking for a specific list of fixes to prioritize and tackle. The mPulse Impact Score identifies the pages to focus optimization on for the quickest ROI – be it conversions, session length, or session duration.