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What Is Digital Experience Monitoring?

Digital Experience Monitoring Definition

Digital experience monitoring (DEM) is an IT management technology that measures performance and helps IT and IT operations teams resolve issues by monitoring the health of all systems between end users and applications.

 

How Does Digital Experience Monitoring Work?

DEM solutions give IT administrators a dashboard that allows them to view performance data and metrics that signify the health and efficiency of their environments. DEM tools are effective for monitoring web applications, APIs, and mobile apps, and they help organizations improve experience management for the user journey as well as the customer journey.

 

Types of Digital Experience Monitoring Tools

There are many DEM tools that each play a unique role in improving observability for IT. Some of these tools include:

  • Application performance monitoring (APM)
  • Real user monitoring
  • End user experience monitoring (EUEM)
  • Synthetic transaction monitoring
  • DevOps monitoring

All of these forms of monitoring allow IT administrators to run diagnostics, perform root cause analysis, and fix performance issues on the backend to reduce remediation and response times and improve business outcomes.

 

Digital Experience Monitoring vs. Network Monitoring

Network performance monitoring tools have been around as long as networks themselves. They were sufficient when you owned and controlled everything from the endpoints to the network to the applications running on your own on-premises hardware in your data center.

In those days, tools that relied on SNMP, NetFlow, network-based PCAPs, or DSCP markings were enough to get predictable network performance and troubleshoot any performance issues. But these domain-centric monitoring tools don’t provide visibility into all the issues that can impact end user experience, particularly as users move off the network and applications and services move to the cloud.  

As a result, most issues are discovered as a result of a user’s helpdesk reports, whereas problems should be detected and remediated before they can significantly affect end user productivity.

 

Why Is Digital Experience Monitoring Important?

Digital experience monitoring provides deep insight into end user experience, proactively monitoring performance and pinpointing issues, whether they are in the local network, on an end user’s device, with the ISP, or within your data center or SaaS applications, such as Microsoft 365, Salesforce, and Box. Some of the functions of DEM tools include:

  • Active and passive monitoring, benchmarking, and measuring the digital experiences for every end user in your organization
  • Monitoring SaaS and cloud and private applications using HTTP, ICMP, or UDP protocols and running on end user devices
  • Collecting real-time device health information (CPU percentage, memory usage, Network IO, Disk IO, Wi-Fi signal strength, etc.) for end user devices
  • Hop-by-hop network path visualization from the endpoint to the application
  • Remote troubleshooting to isolate and resolve end user IT issues

 

[The hybrid workforce] has led to a greater than 35% increase in support ticket volumes and a rise of more than 30% in service cost per ticket. Additionally, service desk technicians increased the time taken to handle a ticket from 7.37 minutes to almost 10 minutes per call—an increase of 30%.

ComputerWeekly, "Helpdesk meltdown due to absenteeism, low morale and increased workload"

Benefits of Digital Experience Monitoring

Digital experience monitoring can provide a great amount of utility to any organization, regardless of size or industry. Let’s examine some of the key business benefits:

  • Increased agility and collaboration: With the increased visibility offered by DEM, desktop, security, network, and helpdesk operations teams can provide improved experiences in line with digital transformation initiatives while triaging and resolving user experience issues.
  • Improved productivity: Seeing user behavior and the user journey is paramount when it comes to ensuring their productivity. By deploying the right experience monitoring tools in tandem with an effective DEM strategy, you can help your organization reduce downtime and outages.
  • Reduced complexity and cost: Giving IT professionals a single pane of glass to look through for digital experiences helps you reduce reliance on costly, complex point monitoring solutions that only serve to create confusion.
  • Operational simplicity: IT operations are simplified when visibility is increased across the entire ecosystem. With the help of DEM solutions, issues can be resolved much more quickly and your ITOps team is free to focus on more productive tasks.
  • Increased customer satisfaction: DEM solutions aren’t only effective for monitoring your network and end users—they can be deployed to ensure quality customer experiences as well. Understanding how your customers are seeing your website gives you an upper hand against your competition.

 

By 2026, at least 60% of I&O leaders will use DEM to measure application, services and endpoint performance from the user’s viewpoint, up from less than 20% in 2021.

Gartner Market Guide for Digital Experience Monitoring

Challenges of Digital Experience Monitoring

Many popular digital experience monitoring solutions come in the form of siloed point products and tend to:

  • Leave blind spots caused by cloud security
  • Force your team to manually correlate from multiple point solutions
  • Optimize reactively rather than proactively
  • Require tedious maintenance due to having multiple agents
  • Cause alert fatigue and no offer actionable insights
  • Lack cloud nativity and functionality

To fill this gap, technology vendors have begun to offer “unified” DEM solutions that are “built for the cloud.” Despite these claims, many of these solutions end up being virtualized point products that only serve to add complexity and cost.

What your business needs is a proven cloud native platform that seamlessly integrates into your existing environment, so you can start improving experiences tomorrow—Zscaler Digital Experience is that platform.

 

The Zscaler Digital Experience Monitoring Solution

Zscaler Digital Experience™ (ZDX™) is a cloud-delivered digital experience monitoring service, part of the Zscaler Zero Trust Exchange™. ZDX measures end user experience for every user in your organization, from every device they use, without the need to deploy multiple point products. It gives you a unified view that allows you to identify end user device, network path, or application issues so you can remediate them and get back to fostering your digital business.

ZDX:

  • Benchmarks and monitors the experience of all your end users from every device they use
  • Provides a company-, location-, and department-wide view of experience
  • Uses a proven agent (Zscaler Client Connector) as the single app for all Zscaler capabilities
  • Offers full-path visualization and monitoring for SaaS and custom apps
  • Leverages the Zscaler global cloud for monitoring; protects your IPs from denylisting; and measures your performance against peers so you can see if others in your region are experiencing similar issues

Other DEM providers haven’t built their products for the cloud, and as such are only suitable for legacy on-premises use cases. ZDX leverages the Zero Trust Exchange, the world’s largest inline security platform built for the cloud, to optimize monitoring behavior. It uses a proven agent, Zscaler Client Connector, that runs on many millions of devices today. ZDX can be set up in a few hours, with no need to deploy any additional hardware, software, or massive storage clusters to store reams of raw, low-quality alerts.

Join the growing network of global leaders who are turning application, network, and endpoint metrics into insights for engaging digital experiences. Book a demo of Zscaler Digital Experience today.

Zscaler Digital Experience (ZDX)

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Zscaler Digital Experience (ZDX)

Introduction of the Zscaler Digital Experience Service

Introduction of the Zscaler Digital Experience Service

Digital Experience Monitoring in the Age of Cloud and Mobility

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Digital Experience Monitoring in the Age of Cloud and Mobility

Gartner Market Guide for Digital Experience Monitoring

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Gartner Market Guide for Digital Experience Monitoring