How to Test Your Web Apps to Avoid Website Downtime This Holiday Season - Page 2

How to remove testing headaches from holiday shopping season

So, what advice should online retailers heed to take testing headaches out of the upcoming holiday shopping season? Let's look at the following eleven points:

1. Review the customer experience offered by best in class retailers.

2. Examine whether your current holiday development plans are hurting your business.

3. Realize the flexibility of RIAs-your customers expect a slick user experience.

4. Plan for last-minute changes (perhaps using an Agile methodology), but be sure to build some additional structured testing into your planning.

5. Seek to combine the development and testing cycles with shared tools and dashboards, regardless of which development methodology you follow.

6. Involve non-IT users in testing. While this is mandatory in "Agile shops," it is good practice when the pressure to get the right product at the right price up on the Website.

7. Consider testing in cloud environments. This can help small businesses as well as enterprises deliver large load testing to ensure the global-class scale of their applications.

8. When choosing cloud partners, go for vendors with experience in delivering new business models. With shortened timelines, you need suppliers with experience in providing off-premises testing.

9. When performing peak load testing, go with expertise. Peak load testing requires a much higher level of expertise than standard load testing to ensure you obtain the proper results.

10. Go for uptime. Just because a cloud testing infrastructure is adequately provisioned for quieter times, is no guarantee it will stay live when you need. Look for guarantees and, where possible, independent security audits.

11. Go for stability. While online retailers come and go rapidly, larger retailers have a lot more to lose, so where they buy is an indication of stability. Choosing a stable, global partner can help ensure success.

Neil Ashizawa is Senior Manager for the Software and Solutions division at HP. Neil has more than 12 years of experience. He has held several roles at HP and Mercury Interactive Corporation (now part of HP). Neil worked in educational services at Mercury, where he managed all technical courseware development and certification management. Prior to this role, Neil worked in professional services, helping to build initial quick start and boot camp models to assist customers in gaining immediate value with their functional testing and load testing tools. He can be reached at