Users are becoming increasingly demanding, also in terms of response times. If your application reacts slowly, people are inclined to leave sooner. And that is to the detriment of your conversion. If you have agreed SLAs or non-functional requirements with your suppliers for the response times, then you can determine the performance objectively by means of a load test.
What is a load test?
A load test will show you whether your system is able to cope with certain peak usage and also whether it fulfils the service level agreement (SLA). In addition, you gain an objective insight into the average response times. If you have developed a new application or you have changed your data centre, hardware or operating system, then with a load test you can gain an insight into average response times, as well as differences in those. Moreover, the capacity and stability of your system will also be checked. That will show you whether there are bottlenecks and what else needs doing before you are safe to go live.
What do we do during a load test?
With a load test we simulate the actual use of your system as realistically as possible. For at least one hour we simulate the activity on the most frequently requested pages, by important transactions and possibly during very busy activities. This takes place on the basis of realistic users’ behaviour or according to the agreements set out in your SLA. Your system is therefore not tested to the extremes, as is the case during a stress test. However, you will gain a clear picture of the response times during peak usage, for example during the weekend, evenings or following a marketing campaign.
In order to carry out a realistic load test, we simulate the users’ behaviour. We build scripts simulating users that go through the desired activities within the web application, and subsequently we introduce variation in the test by simulating different users’ populations according to an established distribution. By using our own loadfarm, in which we have a sufficient number of our own IP addresses available, we are able to simulate users uniquely enough to achieve a realistic test.
During the load test we not only monitor the response times, but also the vitals of your infrastructure. In addition, we keep in contact with your engineers so that we are able to make adjustments where necessary, as well allowing issues to be diagnosed straight away.
What do you get after a load test?
You will receive a report on the basis of the load test, which we will discuss with you personally. The report will contain recommendations for reducing the response times or we give an indication of how you can process more users at the same time.