Forrester has referred to it as the “mobile movement” – which is when a user decides if they love or hate an app you have created. If your goal is to always “feel the love” then you have to have a smart approach to monitoring your mobile apps.
If you want to have a complete understanding of the user experience and performance monitoring, then you have to adhere to a few core tenets, which include:
- Always measure from user’s perspective
- Focus on what really matters
- Fix the most important issues first
Now, it’s time to see how this translates into an actual mobile app monitoring strategy.
1. Measure Your Launch and Resume Time
It is crucial that you measure the actual start time and the resume time. In most cases, startup is going to take longer than resuming the app after it is running in the background. Both of these times will impact the overall user experience, which is why it’s crucial that you capture both of these.
One option for monitoring and capturing these times is to use a syslog server, which is something you may want to look into.
2. Measure the UI Response Time
You need to make sure you measure the UI response time as it is perceived by actual users. In most cases, mobile app monitoring is measured by network request times. The problem with this is that the network is just a single factor in overall response times. Remember, the app user is going to care when the action is completed, not when the network actually responds.
In addition, you need to measure the response times by OS or device. With this information you can focus on a single platform at a time, see and make adjustments to any performance issues and assign the development and QA resources properly.
Something that is equally critical is to measure the speed of all the user actions, but also to rank them by their importance. Be sure you are focused on the issues that are going to affect the largest number of users and that have the most significant impact on your business.
3. Measure Crashes and the Impact They Have
You need to track crashes because this is what actually drives users away. However, there are some mobile app monitoring solutions that are able to track “error type” or “exception stack trace” metrics, which aren’t exactly relevant. What you actually need to know includes: what user actions resulted in the crash; how many unique users were affected by the crash; and how various crashes can impact your overall business.
This is an approach that allows mobile product managers to put a priority on the crashes that are considered “most urgent.”
4. Measure Errors
It’s important to know what user actions caused an error. To know this information, you have to know the total number of users who received the error, what action caused the error, and the app version number.
It’s also a good idea to monitor the average number of users experiencing errors on your app on a daily basis.
5. Measure Total Battery Consumption
As a mobile device user yourself, you know how important battery life is. If your app is draining a device’s battery quickly, it can cause people to stop using it. Make sure you measure the battery consumption of your mobile app, in addition to other critical resources, including memory usage and data plan impact.
When it comes to the performance of your mobile app, measuring the information and factors here is the best course of action. It will ensure you can make changes and adjustments as needed to improve the overall user experience.