Tax season is tough on everyone. But as the filing deadline draws near, tax filing websites are beginning to feel the pressure, and it is affecting performance.
Tax on / Tax off
We examined the top five online tax filing services over the course of one month, from March 1st to April 1st, monitoring their websites for availability and performance using the Uptrends Website Monitoring service’s HTTP/HTTPS probe type and Full Page Check + probe type.
The services in question; TaxSlayer, H&R Block, TaxACT, IRS.gov, and TurboTax; all had periodic slowdown likely caused by an increase in traffic and website usage. But which suffered the most website performance problems overall?
How they fared:
- TaxSlayer – 99.87% (1 hour downtime)
- H&R Block – 99.91% (42 minutes downtime)
- TaxACT – 99.93% (33 minutes downtime)
- TurboTax – 100%
- IRS.gov – 100%
A confirmed error consists of a monitoring checkpoint reporting a website as experiencing an error, and having another monitoring checkpoint confirm that the error exists.
- TaxSlayer – 7
- H&R Block – 4
- TaxACT – 3
- TurboTax – 0
- IRS.gov – 0
Total Load Time (on average)
Total Load Time calculated from averaging FPC+ data captured from 3/26/15 – 4/1/15
- TaxSlayer – 7.8 seconds
- H&R Block – 9.6 seconds
- TaxACT – 14.14 seconds
- TurboTax – 5.7 seconds
- IRS.gov – not a participant
Why does tax website performance matter?
Website performance matters, let alone tax website performance, because nobody wants to use a slow, inconsistent website.
Now factor in the fact (and it is a fact) that people don’t want to deal with the hassle of filing their taxes, and you have a set of user website performance expectations that shoot through the roof.
This means that if a user experiences website downtime or slowdown, they are even more likely to vent their frustrations to their friends, family, colleagues, and post them on the internet. Negative public perception can dramatically impact future use of such services, and influence others to seek alternative solutions.
Needless to say, this could cause some serious damage to your bottom line.
Help is available
If you are a tax filing service, a financial institution, or any other company that provides a product or service that is sought out of necessity, solid website performance and uptime reliability is crucial to your success online.
Uptrends Website Performance Monitoring can help you monitor your website uptime and performance, 24/7, from any number of our over 132+ global monitoring checkpoints.
Our award-winning cloud service will alert you the moment a problem is detected, and provide you with the data you need to maximize your website uptime and performance.
The result? Less stress on your web team and your bottom line, and the numbers you need to ensure that your users have the best website experience.
Interested in Website Performance Monitoring?
You can try Uptrends free for 4-weeks, with no credit card required. You’ll wonder how you managed your website without it!