There are literally billions of smartphone users on the planet. Many of these users interact with apps on a daily basis. With all of the competition in the app market, developers have to stay on the cutting edge of technology to keep their programs both functional and popular.
It is imperative that you adequately monitor your app after it has launched. Getting an idea of how well your app is performing can alert you to issues that may need to be addressed. Reading articles such as, “What is application performance management? 10 APM features” is an excellent way to wrap your mind around this concept.
The following are just some of the things you need to know about app performance management and what it can do for your programs.
Launch and Resume Times
When trying to get a handle on how well your app is performing, be sure to focus on both the start and resume time users are experiencing. In most cases, startup will take much longer than resume time if the app is continuously running in the background.
Both launch times affect the user experience in a significant way. If startup and resume times are getting increasingly slower, chances are your app needs a bit of retooling to keep up with your user’s needs.
UI Response Times
In the past, app developers would use network request times to gauge how fast users could submit and complete actions on their program. However, users only care about how fast their action completes, now how fast the network actually responds.
When measuring UI response times, do so according to the device or OS the user is working with. This will allow you to:
- Focus more on individual platforms and the problems they may have.
- Respond to performance issues on a case-by-case basis.
- Develop solutions for these problems in an easy and comprehensive way.
When measuring UI responses times, be sure to rank the tasks by importance. By focusing on the issues that will affect user experience, you can keep your app running efficiently. Focusing first on tasks that don’t really matter will lead to the user experience suffering as a result.
Monitoring App Crashes is Crucial
Crashing apps are bad for both you and the user. Not only will they result in a lower user experience, app crashes also mean an increased amount and lost revenue for you. When your app crashes, you need to look at all angles to figure out why this happened and what can be done to fix it.
Did this user’s actions cause the crash? What types of crashes are affecting UI? The answers to these questions will help you diagnose and prevent future issues. Having an adequate error logging system in place will allow you to get in-depth information when crashes occur. This information will help you fix issues in a hurry and avoid excessive app downtime.
Helpful Tips and Tricks That Make Application Monitoring Easier
Now that you know what types of things you need to be monitoring, you will have to figure out how to make application performance monitoring (APM) work for your company. Ideally, you want to provide users with apps that are both easy to use and reliable. If you are developing apps for your employees, you need to ensure they are able to boost productivity.
By adequately monitoring your applications, you can find and address issues that exist with ease. Closely monitoring your apps will also give you a better understanding of how users are interfacing with them.
Here are some of the things you should keep in mind when trying to put an app monitoring plan in place:
Decide Which Apps Need to be Monitored First
The first decision you have to make during this process is which apps you want to monitor. If you are monitoring the apps you provide to your employees, pick the most popular ones get metrics from. Are you unsure about what apps your employees use the most? If so, you need to get them to weigh in on this important decision.
Often times, employees will be able to provide you with an outside perspective. With this perspective, you can clearly define the parameters of your application performance management plan. Neglecting to get this type of guidance may lead to you monitoring apps that are rarely used, which is a waste of time and money.
What Critical Transactions Will You Monitor?
To figure out what type of app transactions you will monitor, you have to put yourself in the mindset of the end user. By doing this, you should be able to create a map of user functions. Once you have this map in place, you should be able to easily see what types of transactions you need to monitor.
If you are monitoring an app you have given to employees, you need to map out workflows. Is the app in question making them more productive? If employees or users are having to go through too much hassle to access common functions, you have to work on streamlining your app. While this will take a bit of trial and error, it is definitely worth the effort.
Polling Frequencies and Alerting Policies
Adequately monitoring key transactions within your app allows you to identify performance problems earlier. When things such as threshold violations occur, you need to determine who should be alerted. Not only will you need to set alerting policies, you also need to figure out how many times a certain violation needs to happen before you send out an alert.
Setting the violation count too low can lead to false alarms, setting it too high can put the functionality of your app in jeopardy. By taking control of your app’s monitoring, you can avoid user issues and crashes.
Custom Reports are a Good Thing
The performance reports you provide shareholders, employees or investors should be tailored to their needs. In most cases, investors and shareholders will only be concerned with how much productivity and capital an app is generating. This is why you will need to avoid giving them app performance reports with in-depth error reports on them.
Generating detailed reports for employees with the various error messages an app is generating is crucial. Providing your team with this information can make it much easier for them to address ongoing app issues. Failing to get help with the monitoring and maintaining of your app can lead to a number of problems in the future.
Create a Centralized IT Response to Deal with App Performance Issues
While closely monitoring how your app is performing is important, you will need a system in place for dealing with the problems this monitoring can discover. Oftentimes, large businesses will have multiple apps in use at any given time. This is why having the right team and response plan in place is so important.
Even the slightest misstep can lead to an app becoming unreliable and unusable. The information you get through monitoring the performance of an app can help you nip problems in the bud before they cause any real damage. The last thing you want to do is ignore signs of app trouble due to the serious issues it can cause.
Keeping Everyone in the Loop is Vital
Some business owners think that app performance monitoring is a solo sport. Usually, this attitude will cause a variety of missteps that will make an app less useful and more problematic. To use the data from APM properly, a business owner will need to involve their entire team. With all hands on deck, a business owner can delegate certain parts of the app monitoring process to various team members.
Not only will this take a lot of stress off of a business owner, it will make this process more successful. In most cases, business owners who attempt to handle the app monitoring process alone will become overwhelmed and will make crucial mistakes as a result.
Use App Performance Data to Optimize a Program
One of the biggest misconceptions about app performance monitoring is that it can only be used to find functionality issues. The reality is that this data can help you see how to make your app more useful to employees or consumers. Failing to constantly improve and optimize the apps you have can lead to them becoming obsolete. In the world of technology, you either roll with the changes or the changes roll over you.
Embrace the Power of Technology
Creating a competitive edge should be one of the main concerns you have a business owner. Utilizing the power of technology is a great way to make your company unique. By providing both employees and consumers with useful apps, you can stay on an upward trajectory.
The time and effort you put into adequately monitoring app performance will definitely pay off. If you are unsure about how to start the app monitoring process, reach out to an IT professional for help.