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Google’s DoubleClick Ad-Server Network Goes Down: 5 Questions to Assess the Impact to Your Revenue

By Steve Feloney | November 13, 2014

CATEGORIES: Web Performance

Double ClickThis week, DoubleClick went down for just under two hours. With Google’s DoubleClick Ad Serving as the dominant player with about 44 percent of the ad serving market, the revenue loss for many websites could be in the millions!  This leads us to question, should you dump DoubleClick for a different ad-server?  More importantly, while Google’s outage makes for a news headline, what is the impact to your topline?

By looking at the analytic data of your site performance, you can assess the potential impact to your business revenue.  Here are five steps that you can take now.

5 Steps to Assessing Site Performance

  1. Look at your site performance. Synthetic or active monitoring will be the best way to see the performance changes of your site.
  2. Verify that DoubleClick was having performance issues and note the timeframe.  Using a waterfall breakdown of the site will enable you to see the performance of the DoubleClick service.  If all your ads were working, then you have nothing to worry about.
  3. Correlate your revenue numbers with the timeframe DoubleClick was down.  More than likely you have revenue number tracking from an analytics tool like Adobe or Google Analytics.
  4. Analyze the historical revenue for the timeframe DoubleClick was down.
  5. Compare your historical revenue numbers with the revenue today.  How dramatic of a loss is it?  Is it something to worry about and take action on?

There are other questions to consider, including is there other potential revenue or customer impact due to the ad-server not functioning properly?  If the overall site performance was affected then you could have increased the “bounce” and “exit” from your site, possibly increasing your overall revenue impact from the incident.

How do you know if there was an increase in the “bounce rate” or “exit rate”?  Again, you will want to correlate the “exit” and “bounce” rates your analytics show with the performance degradation that you see.  Once that is accomplished you can look historically and see how the bounce/exit rates are over time.  If you see that they increased during DoubleClick downtime, you should look to see if there are configuration changes you can make to your site.

You want to ensure that ads, whenever possible, load after “time to interactivity”.  This will prevent the ad from slowing down users from interacting with your website.  You may lose the ad revenue, but you will not lose your customers.

Collecting and analyzing the performance data of your site is the only way to know how your business objectives are affected by unplanned downtime.  Don’t let another news headline have too much of an impact your topline!

To learn if you are capturing the key performance metrics that can impact your topline, visit Keynote’s Performance Optimization.

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