ONLINE SALES FILL RETAILERS' CHRISTMAS STOCKINGS – BUT CAN THEY COPE? Friday 9 November 2007 PDF Print …Empirix provides free website audit test to help ‘e-retailers’ get ready for Christmas… BERKSHIRE, United Kingdom, 9 November 2007 – With Christmas around the corner, a large majority of shoppers will no doubt turn to the internet to buy gifts for loved ones. To help online retailers prepare for the festive season Empirix, which helps organisations adopt complex communications solutions with confidence, has developed a free audit test that will allow businesses to gauge their website’s performance in anticipation of the holiday rush. This free test is especially important, and useful, for online retailers when one considers Forrester Research reports that Internet spending will hit £13.6bn between October and December, putting the UK top of the league of European countries for Internet retail. Which is a strong indicator of the comfort levels in the UK, when it comes to buying anything online. Empirix’s audit test will give companies a good understanding of whether their site can handle expected traffic, and provide a glimpse at possible underlying issues causing poor performance. It will be conducted by part of Empirix’s e-LoadExpert service, which determines if a website is able to function under heavy user load, especially while carrying out electronic transactions. What’s more, it will check whether front and back-end systems, and related web-applications, like CRM systems, are operating effectively. Audit test web link: http://www.empirix.com/ecd/oneform/empirix-oneform.asp?cid=0... Top tips for getting your site ready for the festive season In addition to this, Empirix has prepared the following tips for internet retailers to take into account when preparing their sites for the seasonal spending. 1. Talk to each other: marketing initiatives will dictate the business transactions and scenario that IT people should focus on. So, make sure IT support is aware of any marketing initiatives that are driving customers to the website - in order for marketing to be a success; the customer experience must be a positive one. 2. Put yourself in your customers’ shoes: we would suggest doing a ‘spike’ test at a time when site activity is normally low. This process should only take days, not weeks, and will mean you can determine the capability and capacity of your site today, and give you a better understanding of what you might need to fix as a priority over the coming weeks. Use an automated test that can identify where problems exist at any stage of any transaction. 3. Spot problems early: leaving load and performance testing of your website to the last minute is common, but it leaves you little or no time to make any corrections if big problems are detected. Therefore, consider using a short-term monitoring service to help identify potential problems with your site over the Christmas period. Quite apart from knowing that your IT infrastructure is functioning as it should be, make sure you spot any problems in the customer experience … before customers call to complain. 4. Know your facts: check that you have enough bandwidth from your service provider, and that there are failsafes in place should you suddenly find you need greater capacity. Equally, if you have a hosted service, ensure service level agreements have been agreed, and that measurement is in place to ensure the supplier lives up to them. 5. Delegate: while it is critical to make sure your website is able to handle all customer transactions flawlessly, it doesn’t have to keep you up at night. There are a number of companies that can offer testing and monitoring of your site as a hosted service. Look for a partner that can scale to your own requirements and one that doesn’t require a major upfront investment. In addition, anticipating and delegating your load and stress testing to a suitable partner will give you upfront expertise that will enable you to detect scalability issues much quicker in your deployment cycle. “Many companies are set to lose out if their e-commerce websites aren’t operating,” said Andy Buchanan, European Director, Empirix. “Today’s online shopper isn’t prepared to put up with time-out and error messages, they want pages that refresh quickly, and the reassurance that every transaction has been processed (without having to contact a call centre to see if it has gone through); therefore, in order to convert potential online shoppers into buyers, companies need to ensure that when it comes to check-out time, transactions don’t fail, or they’ll lose out on business, and damage customer loyalty and brand credibility.” About Empirix Empirix helps organisations adopt complex communications solutions with confidence. We combine the industry’s deepest knowledge of telecommunications and self-service applications with award-winning testing and monitoring solutions to ensure our customers realize the promise of their technology investments. Empirix is the only company with expertise that spans the evolution of these advanced technologies across multiple markets – from testing in R&D labs through monitoring the end-user experience. For over a decade, thousands of quality-conscious network equipment manufacturers, service providers and enterprises worldwide have trusted Empirix to reduce the time and cost of integrating new technologies into existing environments. Visit www.empirix.com. For additional information contact: David Mieny / Jennifer Janson Six Degrees for Empirix Tel: +44 (0)1628 480 280 Email: email@example.com / firstname.lastname@example.org This press release was distributed by ResponseSource Press Release Wire on behalf of Six Degrees Limited in the following categories: Business & Finance, Computing & Telecoms, for more information visit http://pressreleasewire.responsesource.com/about.