Published on

What is Real User Monitoring (RUM)?


What is Real User Monitoring (RUM)?

You may have heard people talking about real-user measurement, real-user metrics, or end-user experience monitoring; these are all different ways to call Real User Monitoring (RUM).

But what exactly is RUM?

RUM is a testing technique based on the users' interactions to measure a website's performance. In other words, it's a way to observe how a website responds in action.

Unlike other methods and techniques such as Synthetic monitoring, RUM it's a passive monitoring tool that continuously gauges every user interacting with the website. However, this is not an alternative to other kinds of monitoring; it's a compliment!

It allows you to identify how response times, loading times, and resources management impact users' experience. Also, you can discover if something works in some browsers but not in others or whether specific devices experience particular performance behaviors.

In addition, this technique helps you understand how your end-users perceive your website and if there are any bottlenecks or delays that frustrate them.

Summing up, with RUM, you can know what kind of user experience your site is offering.

How does RUM work?

It's simple to understand how it works as there are few parts involved in this process.

At first, a javascript code is injected into the website. Then the script captures all the performance data and sends the metrics to be stored somewhere.

Secondly, a service receives the data, processes it, and stores it.

Finally, you can analyze the captured data individually or in segments, which helps you understand how your site performs in real life.

Who is using RUM?

People in a wide variety of roles are using RUM, such as developers, DevOps, marketers, and product managers. Anyone can take something valuable from the genuine users' experience to improve their work in some way.

Should I consider using a RUM tool?

Everyone concerned with improving website performance should consider monitoring users' interactions, mainly because when negative the performance metrics negatively impacts the visitor's behavior.

For example, RUM can helps you understand why the users leave your site in a checkout flow without purchasing or why they are not reading your entire posts.

If you are focused on improving your site's core web vitals, then you should use a RUM tool to help you make decisions that benefit your users.

Although many metrics such as device/browser/page views can be captured both in RUM and GA, many others are exclusive from one or another technique.

On the one hand, you can get more information regarding user behavior with GA, and on the other hand, using RUM, your focus is on the website performance KPIs and how those impact the user experience.

As we mentioned before, neither of the methods are alternatives; all of them are complimentary. RUM & GA are not the exceptions.

Let's see an example where both methods help to understand the whole picture.

You can get from GA which pages a user visits, in which order, and every page bounce rate.

Complementing all these data with the metrics from a RUM tool, you can understand better why the user decided to go from one page to another and if there are loading times that explain those bounce rates.

In conclusion, you can collect data from different sources and methods, combine them to optimize your website's core web vitals, and deliver better user experiences.

Wanna know more about RUM?

For a helping hand to guide you through the process and make your website run faster, schedule your demo with Piio. We can guide you through every step of improving your website and digital presence, tackling heavy images and improve your web performance.