ReadingGlasses.com

Founded in 2000, ReadingGlasses.com is the world’s largest online reading glasses store. It provides hundreds of designer reading glasses, browsable by gender, frame/lens type, frame material, favorite designer, color, size, magnification power and price range. The company strives to consistently provide excellence in quality, selection, value and service. It is based in Dallas, Texas.

The Problem

ReadingGlasses.com, the world’s largest online reading glasses store, is dedicated to providing the most responsive online shopping experience. However, Jason Kyle, the company’s e-Commerce Director, recognized there was a crucial missing piece in ReadingGlasses.com’s ability to ensure that experience. They lacked an external system to monitor, measure and test site performance. He started using a basic pinging tool that checked every 60 seconds whether the home page was responding. But it told him nothing about the customer experience, other than the fact the home page was up. Were all pages loading? Was the checkout process fast? Were all images displaying properly? Were embedded Flash animations streaming properly? These were some of the questions Kyle was not able to get answers to.

To address these issues, Kyle tried another leading website performance monitoring provider. Unfortunately he found the user interface complicated, and the cost exceeded his budget. “It felt as if it were built for scientists or engineers, not retailers,” Kyle said.

Kyle jotted down his requirements and continued his search. The system had to be cost-effective and easy to use, yet powerful enough to provide detailed information about site performance, down to each and every page, graphic, line of text, button, form, script and object. Most importantly he wanted the measurements taken outside his firewall in order to monitor the same experience ReadingGlasses.com customers were having. The search was on.
 

The Solution

Kyle first met SmartBear’s AlertSite® team at the Internet Retailer Conference & Exhibition in June 2009. He received a personal demonstration of AlertSite’s DéjàClick®, the first inside-the-browser web performance monitoring system. And he learned about the Website Performance Monitor, a tool that tests website URLs and generates real-time alerts if page errors or performance problems occur. After the conference Kyle decided to give the AlertSite solutions a try. He established his uptime, availability and response time targets and configured AlertSite’s Website Performance Monitor to notify him when those targets were not being achieved. Kyle used DéjàClick to record customers’ click streams—from browsing products, to putting items in their carts and checking out. He configured the technology to capture the web exper­ience from customers’ perspectives, including the performance of pages, links, components, objects, cursor movements, rich-media components such as Flash and more. These metrics are gathered by data stations in AlertSite’s Global Monitoring Network. Kyle configured DéjàClick to monitor every 30 minutes from 5 of the 75-plus stations—Dallas, New York, Los Angeles, London and Sydney. He set up the system so whenever an error occurred or response time fell below Kyle’s thresholds, AlertSite would immediately notify him. In addition, others in the company would be notified by their preferred method—email, cell phone, SMS message, phone, pager or desktop monitoring. The services ran for 30 days.

 

The Conclusion

Kyle knew he found his solution: AlertSite’s DéjàClick and Website Performance Monitoring service. Switching to AlertSite enables Kyle to ensure the fastest possible performance on ReadingGlasses.com.

AlertSite’s technologies make it easy for Kyle to pinpoint performance issues and optimize applications and the network. The alerts let Kyle minimize down time by speeding problem detection, while reports allow Kyle to identify patterns and predict where and what problems are at risk of occurring in the future.

AlertSite has helped Kyle avoid virtually all outages and performance issues on ReadingGlasses.com. For instance, Kyle received an instant phone alert when the site was experiencing an error in Dallas. Kyle immediately logged into the system and found the source of the problem: The site had been hacked. There was an injection point on the site’s Java script fies. Kyle knew exactly what action he needed to take to fix the problem and was able to correct it before it caused further damage. Kyle has had no customer complaints about web performance or down time since deploying AlertSite. With the time and money saved with AlertSite, Kyle and ReadingGlasses.com can devote more resources to their core competency while building the business and providing positive customer experiences. Kyle has recommended AlertSite to his business contacts.

“We want to focus on our core competency—retailing—not learning bits and bytes of website performance. AlertSite is an easy and cost-effective way to ensure our site’s performing at our preferred levels.”—Jason Kyle, e-Commerce Director, ReadingGlasses.com Interactive

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About SmartBear Software

SmartBear Software provides enterprise-class yet affordable tools for development teams that care about software quality and performance. Our collaboration, performance profiling, and testing tools help more than 100,000 developers and testers build some of the best software applications and websites in the world. Our users can be found in small businesses, Fortune 100 companies, and government agencies.

 

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