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As an example, here's how The New York Times website loads from London:
The actual performance of your website - as your visitors experience it - is affected by various ingredients:
- Third-party content (Google ads, Facebook applets, Twitter feeds, Discus forums, widgets, analytics, etc.)
- Effective use of a content distribution network
- The (network) distance between your site (components) and your visitors, i.e. the UK, France, and Germany are close to US servers, but Australia and Brazil may be far away
Real Browser Monitoring checks that each component of your site is correctly responding, and functionally verifies that the composite site is working - from the originating web servers right through to the end-user's browser. It benchmarks a website, reports the true end-user's experience, and offers insight above and beyond regular website monitoring tools that synthetically emulate browsers to check a site's availability and performance.
Our advice: along with regular monitoring, monitor full page load times with a real browser on an ongoing basis, and from all the regions and countries where your (potential) customers may reside.
Mark Pors is CTO and co-founder of WatchMouse, WatchMouse monitors websites and services 24x7 from over 50 locations worldwide and delivers detailed insight about their performance, uptime, and functionality. The page load times in various countries is a recurring customer topic, so WatchMouse launched Real Browser Monitoring (RBM). Companies like Zappos, Twitter, Wikimedia, and many more use WatchMouse monitors to have continuous insight into the load times of their websites and services worldwide.