Ecommerce Holiday Preparation – Monitoring your environment

Keeping a close eye on your environment during your busy season can help you avoid problems and quickly resolve any issues that do come up.

So what is monitoring?

The process of transforming system data into critical insights so that stakeholders can take appropriate action.

We’re not just talking about a dashboard with system vitals – so much of your business depends on your site performance that you need additional monitoring to protect your customer experience.


Today we’ll cover three of the monitoring techniques we use to help our ecommerce clients not only survive the busy holiday season, but shine.

Monitor your database

Your database is an important element of your environment; bottlenecks here can cascade down to your application servers causing requests to back up.  Make sure you set up ongoing monitoring so that you can keep an eye on how your database is performing. We recommend configuring reports that give you snap shots on your DB performance over time (this not only helps you see changes over time but can also help you troubleshoot a problem). Key items to monitor include;

  • Top SQL statements
  • Top Sessions
  • Top Actions
  • Top Services

Monitor your integrations

Don’t forget to monitor the third party systems that support your web store.  Make sure you continually monitor the performance of items like payment gateways and postal outlets to ensure that these critical services perform optimally and don’t impact your shopping experience.

You should also contact all of your vendors to discuss how you’ll manage any issues that do come up. Make sure your team and vendors have clear processes for how to respond to any issues that your monitoring uncovers.

Monitor your bots

It is estimated that bots make up over 60% of all internet traffic, and we’ve seen levels as high as 90% in our client environments. While bad bots can wreak havoc on your environment with SQL injections and comment spam, good bots are essential to your search engine rankings and online presence. It is important for merchants to gain an understanding of their bot traffic going into the holiday season, especially when malicious activity increases for ecommerce.

The first step is to set up monitoring to track the rate bots are visiting your site and to understand the type of bots you are dealing with. Once you have an understanding of your typical traffic you can monitor for sudden changes. You can also set up monitoring that looks for the Top 10 IP addresses you are receiving traffic. You can review these IP’s on a regular basis and block any known malicious ones.

get the guide

For more holiday preparadness advice check out our 2015 guide.

Learn how leading retailers keep their sites performing under peak load, including details on how you can:

  •          Prepare your infrastructure
  •          Optimize your commerce application
  •          Manage your marketing

This guide is designed to help mid-sized retailers prepare for peak season by examining their infrastructure capability, application capacity and marketing campaign processes. Each of these elements is key to understanding how well your web store will perform during the holidays.

Aisling McCaffrey

Demand Marketing Specialist at Thinkwrap
Aisling is our Demand Marketing Specialist at Thinkwrap, and loves working with both technology and humans. She studied International Business (concentrating in Marketing) and has spent several years living and working in China, mostly in Shanghai, where she became passionate about global innovation and how the use of social media changes in different cultures. Aisling likes to keep up on internet trends - from business to memes - and is always looking for new ways to learn or entertain herself.