Synthetic Monitoring emulates end-user transactions using behavioral scripts to validate and measure workflow performance from multiple test points. This kind of monitoring is well-suited for resolving issues because it detects slowness or downtime before your end-users notice any impact.
Synthetic monitoring enables you to establish performance baselines for your digital services or applications. By emulating multi-protocol synthetic transactions at configurable intervals, you can establish daily, weekly, monthly baselines for any important set of performance measures (e.g., user experience, network, DNS, CDN, or API performance). Continuous synthetic monitoring then leverages these established baselines to detect any deviations and alert you of the root cause.
Additional uses include:
Product success requires consistency—in content, in availability, in performance—regardless of the target market or service niche. Users have high expectations for application responsiveness and will quickly switch to alternative solutions. Synthetic monitoring helps you manage the perception of your applications across every major dimension of user interactivity.
Much like Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs for human wellness, your service’s wellness also has its own hierarchy of needs. Specific to synthetic monitoring, we have defined the following four levels:
At a foundational level, your service must be up and running. Once it’s available, users expect it to be fast. Next, you must enable your users to access the service from anywhere in the world or at least make it accessible from all regions within your target market. And finally, your website must be consistent in how it’s available, performing, and reachable.
"Product success requires consistency—in content, in availability, in performance—regardless of the target market or service niche. Users have high expectations for application responsiveness and will quickly switch to alternative solutions. Synthetic monitoring helps you manage the perception of your applications across every major dimension of user interactivity."
We have defined this as reliability; however, it is sometimes known as a Service Level Agreement (SLA) which is measured as a percentage of time (such as 99.999%). Fortunately, synthetic monitoring is well suited to test all of the aspects of service quality as defined.
Your users are on a quest to achieve a task, discover new information, or experience entertainment. Although seemingly instant, their success requires getting past several checkpoints across the internet. For example, they must:
This journey happens with every user interaction that requires content from your service. Synthetic Monitoring allows your team to segment each of these checkpoints across your user’s journey to quickly triangulate problems blocking their path to your application from their local region.
Synthetic monitoring validates your application’s health at all hours of the day, in all relevant locations, across every network provider, and for every major or minor transaction. It does not require active users to measure performance. Information gathered by synthetic monitoring is segmented by network checkpoints found along the data path. Without synthetic monitoring, valuable network information is nebulous and often the cause of performance blindspots.
Learn how synthetic monitoring complements real-user monitoring (RUM) or augments RUM for tasks like benchmarking and performance analysis.
Discover how raw data is aggregated, which performance metrics are the most important to keep track of, and how to apply data analytic concepts like Cumulative Distribution Function (CDF) to your data.
Dive into the components of DNS services, their record types, and all of the potential threats or pitfalls that can challenge the stability of your address resolution infrastructure.
Get familiar with content delivery networks (CDN), how they are used, and what aspects of CDNs are the most important to check for optimal caching, routing, and uptime.
Get help comparing synthetic monitoring tools and determine which features are essential for your business’s use cases.
Learn about various API types, the best practices for monitoring and debugging them, the right KPIs to measure, and the important criteria to consider for selecting an API monitoring tool.
Understand how transaction monitoring complements API monitoring, learn about the best practices and pitfalls, and see a comprehensive list of criteria for picking the right tool for you.
“We always want our users to have a good experience, and this was particularly true as many teachers grappled with remote learning for the first time. As we improved our platform, Catchpoint enabled us to make informed decisions about when to scale. We continue using Catchpoint to ensure we don’t exceed our performance threshold.”
Jillian Silver, Tech Lead