Keynote Fires Up E-Commerce Services

The Web performance company revamps its services portfolio, combining performance testing and customer-experience research to help e-commerce companies know where they stand.

As the cost of attracting new customers and tracking site performance continues to climb for Internet businesses, Keynote Systems Inc. is stepping in with a revamped services portfolio to give e-commerce companies comprehensive views of performance and usability.

At its Global Internet Performance Conference this week in New York, Keynote is set to broaden its services with new SLM (service-level management) bundles, a new real-time performance measurement service, beefed-up reporting in its Application Perspective service and a new score card service that compares site usability with industry averages.

"We need to know where we stand. We want to make sure the customer experience is good and the site is quick," said Keynote user Mark Lawler, vice president of IT at Groople Inc., an online travel service in Denver.

Keynotes move to combine performance testing and customer experience research is unique and just in time, according to analysts.

"You have Mercury [Interactive Corp.], Gomez [Inc.] and Empirix [Inc.] that can claim to be fairly capable in the IT testing arena, but they dont look at end-user behavior," said Cameron Haight, an analyst at Gartner Inc., in Houston.

In the SLM arena, Keynote has created bundles that provide load testing for application deployments to help assess the readiness of those applications. Another suite option allows users to define service-level standards, and a third addresses service-level delivery. Each includes a Keynote Scoreboard and private Web monitoring agent, either its Application Perspective or its Transaction Perspective service.

/zimages/2/28571.gifKeynote Systems has agreed to buy Web-based customer research vendor Vividence. Click here to read more.

Microsoft Corp.s MapPoint service uses one of the tools to confirm service levels, according to Gary Ide, operations program manager for the MapPoint unit, in Redmond, Wash.

"We have a financial commitment to our customers that we will be up at least 99.99 percent of the time and that our API calls respond within a specified period," Ide said. "With the Scoreboard, we can leverage the Transaction Perspective investment we made. We can roll up those performance metrics in a number of ways into a single-screen view."

Another new SLM service, Traffic Perspective, collects and aggregates data and reports on user performance, usage and behavior.

"We can cleanse, filter and re-aggregate packets into pages and business processes our customers care about," said Carol Carpenter, director of product management at Keynote, in San Mateo, Calif. The tool provides a real-time view of the impact of performance problems on customers. It is aimed at mission-critical applications used by employees in branch offices or by partners, said Carpenter.

/zimages/2/28571.gifClick here to read about Keynotes performance awards.

In its core measurement and monitoring services, Keynote enhanced its Application Perspective transaction-monitoring service with new reporting functions. New service-level reports can be scheduled, customized for audience type and configured to include time filters.

In Keynotes new customer-experience business, built through a series of acquisitions culminating in last months buyout of Vividence Corp., the company added Customer Experience Scorecards as well as new syndicated reports.

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