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Performance Tracking  > 2005 Holiday Season

WebSitePulse 2005 Holiday Retail Performance & Uptime Report Summary

Uptime, defined as the total number of minutes a website or a web system is available during a given period of time, as well as Response time, (including the following time components: DNS resolution, time to connect, download first byte, download last byte) become critical factors in the intensifying on-line competitive environment and a real source of competitive advantage.

With the standardization of the processes, formats, applications, and the Internet infrastructure supporting equipment, the reliability, redundancy, accessibility, and the seamless integration of the various web elements and systems will become the mission-critical technical component for the End User overall experience.

WebSitePulse launched the Performance and Uptime Reports program to keep the general public and the Internet community informed about the progress that is made, as well as about the challenges webmasters, owners and operators are facing on a daily basis, especially during the online shopping-intensive periods of the year.

Ten of the most popular e-commerce destinations were selected for the Holiday Reports and data from their performance measurement was provided through the WebSitePulse public website.

Uptime data was consistent, as measured from the 3 different US locations with the exception of Sears.com and BestBuy.com where the fluctuations were more noticeable.

Customers accessing the websites from the West Coast experienced longer response times. Only BestBuy.com and CompUsa.com reacted more slowly from the Central US area and from the East Coast, respectively.
End Users on the East Coast had an overall better experience, and enjoyed better response times.
Unusually long response time was measured for Amazon.com and ToysRUs.com from the West Coast affecting their averages, and dragging down their rankings.

CompUsa.com, Sears.com, and BestBuy.com formed the bottom of the list combining slower than the average response times and longest periods of unavailability.

Kmart.com and Target.com demonstrated consistently high level of reliability. Amazon.com could have been part of that group too, if response times from the West Coast were not taken into consideration.

In a recent Report about the 2005 Holiday online shopping experience published by ForeSee Results and FGI Research, CompUsa.com and Sears.com were given the lowest scores among the 40 online retailers included in the study.

Even though a multitude of factors are playing their role for the overall shopping experience, WebSitePulse strongly believes that availability and response times are among the most critical ones and they are directly correlated to the End Users’ purchasing decisions and behaviors online.

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

Response times for the whole period
#TargetLos Angeles, CAChicago, ILWashington, DCAvg. resp. time

Uptime for the whole period
#TargetLos Angeles, CAChicago, ILWashington, DCAvg. uptime

Best regards, and takeITeasy™ with WebSitePulse™

Iavor Marinoff, CEO

Report Methodology:
Performance and availability are measured for a typical shopping web transaction at 15 minute monitoring interval every day between the hours of 6AM and 3AM EST. The WebSitePulse application monitoring service is used to collect data and to create the reports.
The steps in each shopping transaction - opening the home page, browsing for a product, adding product to the shopping cart, and secure check out - are comparable for all ten websites, and reflect the real online buyers' experience. The simultaneous monitoring is performed from 3 US locations of the WebSitePulse monitoring network: Chicago, IL; Los Angeles, CA, and Washington, DC. In case of a detected malfunction or unavailability, the system performs automated error verification from 3 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.

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.

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

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".