Synthetic Monitoring

Simulate visitor interaction with your site to monitor the end user experience.

View Product Info


Simulate visitor interaction

Identify bottlenecks and speed up your website.

Learn More

Real User Monitoring

Enhance your site performance with data from actual site visitors

View Product Info


Real user insights in real time

Know how your site or web app is performing with real user insights

Learn More

Infrastructure Monitoring Powered by SolarWinds AppOptics

Instant visibility into servers, virtual hosts, and containerized environments

View Infrastructure Monitoring Info
Comprehensive set of turnkey infrastructure integrations

Including dozens of AWS and Azure services, container orchestrations like Docker and Kubernetes, and more 

Learn More

Application Performance Monitoring Powered by SolarWinds AppOptics

Comprehensive, full-stack visibility, and troubleshooting

View Application Performance Monitoring Info
Complete visibility into application issues

Pinpoint the root cause down to a poor-performing line of code

Learn More

Log Management and Analytics Powered by SolarWinds Loggly

Integrated, cost-effective, hosted, and scalable full-stack, multi-source log management

 View Log Management and Analytics Info
Collect, search, and analyze log data

Quickly jump into the relevant logs to accelerate troubleshooting

Learn More

Flower sites hit hard by Valentine’s Day

HeartValentine’s Day is a great day for any vendor selling flowers. Over the years, a large number of websites selling flowers have sprung up, and as you might expect, many of these websites are flooded by eager shoppers on February 14 wanting to buy flowers and gifts for their loved ones.

This is big business. Americans are expected to spend $18.6 billion on Valentine’s Day gifts this year.

Now here is the catch. Every year, some of these websites won’t be prepared to handle the increase in visitor traffic and as a result they slow down significantly, or even crash under the pressure.

Downtime and slowdown is extra bad for ecommerce sites

Webmasters failing to take expected (or unexpected) traffic spikes into account are all too common. For an ecommerce website, this is of course a very critical error. Just compare it with a regular real-life flower shop:

  • A slow website will turn away customers because it’s the equivalent of poor, slow service. That clerk seems to be ignoring you, or the line to the counter is moving in slow motion.
  • A crashed website is not only embarrassing, but is the same as completely closing shop with a big sign saying: “Go to some other shop and spend your money, we’re closed!”

Neither of the two is something a flower website would want to do on Valentine’s Day, one of the busiest days of the year, perhaps the busiest.

We here at Pingdom run an uptime monitoring service, so this year we decided to see how some of the more popular flower websites would handle themselves on, and in the days leading up to, Valentine’s Day. Would they hold up? Would they slow down a lot?

Slowdown and crashes

Several websites showed clear slowdown, especially in the morning hours of Valentine’s Day. A lot of last-minute orders in other words. Here are some very telling charts for three of the websites we monitored,, and

Load time increase on Valentine's Day

We chose these three sites because they so clearly illustrate the increased load these sites are subjected to, and that it can actually noticeably affect the performance of a website. And note that this is just the load time of the HTML code of the website, without images. The overall load time was in other words even slower.

Out of the websites we monitored for this survey, one clearly stood out for two reasons. One was that it was generally much slower than the others, and second because it recorded a significant amount of downtime. More than eight hours in just the past few days, most of it on Friday afternoon, US time, when it was unavailable for four hours and then even more later in the evening.

That site was

Website downtime,

Another site that also had downtime at a very bad time, almost and hour-and-a-half spread over the day on February 14, was The site also showed a similar increase in load time as you could see in the examples we included above.

Now, we’ve mentioned mainly sites where something went either wrong, or hinted at some kind of performance issue or degradation due to the increase in traffic. But, there were sites that worked just fine, with no noticeable issues. These include,, and


Downtime and slowdown can and will happen to all websites. However, sometimes the timing can be very bad, and a flower website having problems during business hours on Valentine’s Day, or even the days leading up to Valentine’s Day, is a prime example of bad timing.

In most cases this could likely have been avoided if the websites had been better prepared to handle the additional traffic. Instead, some of these sites have ended up losing sales and goodwill (slow websites tend to be quite a frustrating experience).

By the way, if you are interested in digging into the data yourself, or keep an eye open over time, we’ve set up a public, continuously updated report page: U.S. Flower Websites, uptime and response time status page. There you can find all the sites included in this survey, including some we didn’t mention.

SolarWinds Observability now offers synthetic transaction monitoring

Powerful transaction monitoring now complements the availability and real user [...]

Exit Rate vs Bounce Rate – Which One You Should Improve and Why

Tracking your website’s exit and bounce rates will give you insight into how [...]

Introduction to Observability

These days, systems and applications evolve at a rapid pace. This makes analyzi [...]

Webpages Are Getting Larger Every Year, and Here’s Why it Matters

Last updated: February 29, 2024 Average size of a webpage matters because it [...]

A Beginner’s Guide to Using CDNs

Last updated: February 28, 2024 Websites have become larger and more complex [...]

Monitor your website’s uptime and performance

With Pingdom's website monitoring you are always the first to know when your site is in trouble, and as a result you are making the Internet faster and more reliable. Nice, huh?



Gain availability and performance insights with Pingdom – a comprehensive web application performance and digital experience monitoring tool.

Start monitoring for free