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Performance Tracking  > 2007 Holiday Season  > Report Highlights

2007 Holiday Season Report Highlights

  • December 26, 2007 Sears.com and Kmart.com down again: Sears.com and Kmart.com were down for almost 2 hours starting from 9:45pm EST. First a couple of "500" Internal Server Errors were detected and then the sites were closed completely. The Sears website message stated that "Sears.com is temporarily closed for site enhancements", while the Kmart one was "Kmart.com is temporarily experiencing high traffic volume". Both websites were up and running again at 11:43pm EST.
  • December 7, 2007 Three websites down for repairs before the weekend; Sears.com times out: Sears, Kmart and CompUSA were down for around 2 hours during the night for maintenance. Also, there were 30 minutes of unusually high response times for Sears.com detected shortly after 9pm EST. For some reason the Sears home page started to time out or return empty replies. Some of our checks succeeded, but they also showed slower than usual response from the homepage. This situation continued up until 10:05pm EST.
  • November 29, 2007 Sears and Kmart with problems again: Sears.com and Kmart.com were down for more than two hours during the night - from 3:15am up until 5:35am EST. A message indicating that "the website is temporarily experiencing high traffic volume" was posted on both sites. Later, at 11:29am EST, the two websites were closed again, this time only for 15 minutes and with a message that "site enhancements" are being applied.
  • November 26, 2007 Strong performance on Cyber Monday: On Cyber Monday the overall website performance of the ten retailers was strong and much better than what they demonstrated on Black Friday. There were no complete outages like the one we registered with Sears.com.

    ToysRUs average response time
    on Cyber Monday
    The only significant slow-down was recorded for ToysRUs, which started around 10:30am and did not return to normal until 1:37pm. A detailed analysis of the collected data shows a surge of the online traffic to be the reason for this slow-down, which impacted the home page, product search, add to cart and checkout processes and prevented online customers from completing their purchase transactions. BestBuy also showed signs of slow-down due to high traffic volume, indicated by higher than usual response times and some timed out shopping transactions between the hours of 12pm and 5pm, but we estimate that the slow-down did not have a major impact on the online sales for BestBuy.
  • November 23, 2007 Sears.com website closed for business on Black Friday:

    Sears.com Outage
    Sears.com website was completely closed for online shoppers on Black Friday. The website posted a message on its front page explaining that it is "temporarily experiencing high traffic volume" shortly after 9am EST and didn't remove it up until 4:30pm. Later the same day at 9pm the message appeared again, this time only for 45 minutes.
    Kmart.com, which is also run by Sears Brands LLC, had the same problems, at the same times, but apparently the traffic there was not so heavy, and we were able to complete successfully some of our tests during the day.
    CircuitCity recorded almost 10 percent downtime because of the two hours maintenance period started at 4:30am and some isolated timeouts during the day. The electronics retailer had noticeable higher response times at around 7am and 9am, but managed to handle the traffic.
  • November 22, 2007 CircuitCity.com and CompUSA.com closed for business before Black Friday: With six of the ten monitored websites having problems, two had very serious issues through most of the day and were mostly closed for online business. CircuitCity.com website was shut down during the early hours between 4am and 5:45am EST with the following message: "We're updating our site with new products and information. Please check back in a few minutes..". However, right after 7pm the web site timed out on all tests and soon after that the same message appeared on the front page. For the next four hours, up until 11pm EST, the website was closed for online shoppers and most likely the reason was overload.
    CompUSA.com, the second website with serious problems also went down for maintenance for 30 minutes during the night, but the real problems started at 7:20pm EST, when the website started to respond very slow, timing out on most tests. The problems continued during the night up until 1am EST when things went back to normal.