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Performance Tracking  > 2011 Vacation Planning

WebSitePulse 2011 Vacation Planning Websites Performance Report Summary


As June draws to a close and the actual vacation period begins, it’s time to present the results of this year’s Vacation Planning report. Starting May 16th we continuously monitored some of the leading online travel booking sites.

For the purpose of this Report, we measured not only the performance of the websites’ home pages, but a typical complete web transaction from an End User’s point of view – going to the Home page, choosing a destination and a vacation period, browsing the search results and selecting a hotel. The Reports measured Uptime and Response Time as the most important metrics for the availability and the reliability of any web-based operation, critical for the End Users' overall online experience. Measurements of the multi-step online transactions were made every 15 minutes, simultaneously from four different monitoring locations.

This year none of the sites reached the 100% uptime mark. All of them experienced slowdowns at one time or another. Of course, there were several major outages as well. You can read more about them in the Highlights section.

One thing that caught our attention is the staggering difference between the average response time of the fastest and the slowest monitored sites. A ten time difference is not a good sign if you are trying to stay competitive in the online environment where the Customer wants everything now, or as fast as possible. A closer look at the stats shows that this gap is not a result of a constant overload or poor server performance. It’s more than that. It’s the website system design. A more simplified system design pays off in a faster and smoother performance of the website, which ultimately leads to higher customer satisfaction, provided that they have found and booked the vacation that they are looking for.

To sum up, this year’s results show that a stable server and a reliable network may ensure the good performance of the site, but it takes more than this to stand out from the competition. If the providers of vacation planning services are to increase their visitors, customer satisfaction and number of orders, then focusing on the system design, easy navigation and faster delivery of search results will be central to their strategy for next year.

The summarized numbers and averages for the entire monitoring period are shown in the tables below:

Average Response times for the whole period
#TargetSan FranciscoAmsterdamWashingtonAvg. resp. time
1venere.com4.9424.7144.6948.6945.761
2kayak.com4.9144.5803.42211.6636.145
3tripadvisor.com7.4897.2723.63717.3808.945
4hotels.com6.9449.0236.32018.29910.147
5expedia.com8.63110.29210.17619.44912.137
6travel.com8.60618.1999.23225.46715.376
7travelnow.com14.79918.19015.58323.52518.024
8wotif.com31.64826.72029.8968.97924.311
9orbitz.com16.38025.21610.43645.21324.311
10cheaptickets.com16.64325.73810.84045.46924.673
11bookit.com22.85320.91011.720104.85840.085
12booking.com60.0546.53833.441135.71258.936

Average Uptime for the whole period
#TargetSan FranciscoAmsterdamWashingtonAvg. uptime
1kayak.com99.995%99.995%99.975%99.993%99.989%
2wotif.com99.970%99.982%100.000%100.000%99.988%
3tripadvisor.com99.984%99.985%99.975%99.994%99.985%
4travel.com99.938%99.976%99.980%99.914%99.952%
5expedia.com99.964%99.896%99.892%99.862%99.903%
6hotels.com99.886%99.814%99.867%99.824%99.848%
7bookit.com99.910%99.989%99.803%99.555%99.814%
8orbitz.com99.803%99.770%99.767%99.777%99.779%
9venere.com99.776%99.797%99.722%99.786%99.770%
10cheaptickets.com99.656%99.677%99.688%99.713%99.684%
11booking.com99.427%99.643%99.570%99.204%99.461%
12travelnow.com99.460%99.214%99.359%99.320%99.338%

Best regards, and takeITeasy™ with WebSitePulse™

Iavor Marinoff, CEO


Methodology:
Performance and availability are measured for a typical travel-related booking web transaction at 15 minute monitoring interval, every day, 24/7. The WebSitePulse application monitoring service is used to collect data and to create the reports.
The steps in each transaction are comparable for all websites, and reflect the real online buyers' experience. The simultaneous monitoring is performed from four locations of the WebSitePulse global monitoring network: San Francisco, CA; Washington, DC; Sydney, Australia, and Amsterdam, Netherlands. In case of a detected malfunction or unavailability, the system performs automated error verification from four independent resources and only after the above procedure is performed and has returned consistent results, the detected error is confirmed, recorded, and included in the daily performance reports. In these cases, an advanced WebSitePulse exclusive feature comes into play - Forced Monitoring -, which automatically switches to a 3 minute monitoring interval for increased accuracy.

About WebSitePulse:
WebSitePulse is a leading provider of global, independent, and objective availability and performance monitoring of web sites, servers, network components, web applications, e-business- and email round-trip transactions.

Contact:
For more information about this report please contact:
George T., CTO
phone: 1-407-380-1600
email:


Reproduction:
WebSitePulse launched the Performance and Uptime Reports program to keep the general public and the Internet community informed about the performance of specific websites and the challenges their webmasters, owners and operators are facing on a daily basis, especially when the web traffic intensifies due to some special events through the year. Some of the most popular web destinations, related to each particular event, are selected for the purpose of the Reports, and data from their performance measurements is made available on the WebSitePulse public website.

With the intention to broadly disseminate this information for the benefit of the Internet community, we encourage the use of this information without prior approval and under the following Terms and Conditions:
  • WebSitePulse should be referred as the "Source" of the information;
  • WebSitePulse should be acknowledged as the owner of the copyrights of the information in the Reports;
  • The texts of the Reports could be changed or altered to better suit the needs and the style of the publisher without prior notice to WebSitePulse. However, the integrity and the meaning of the information should be preserved;

The Data from the performance measurements cannot be changed or manipulated and should be used "as is".



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