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What is Application Performance Monitoring Software?

Application performance monitoring (APM) software is used to track and monitor the performance of web applications and software to spot and resolve performance issues. This tool offers performance metrics for apps including insights on stats such as time taken by an application to process a transaction and the number of total transactions processed. Show moreAPM software provides a baseline for these metrics and tracks the apps for any change from the baseline. It displays the metrics in a range of data visualizations for easy understanding of the general performance. By identifying and resolving any performance issues promptly, companies can provide an enhanced user experience. Start by checking our leader Dynatrace, and other recommended solutions in this category.Show less

How was this ranking made?

To come up with this list of best Application Performance Monitoring Software we have checked 50 leading apps currently present on the market, comparing their features, ease of implementation, client service, offered integrations with other systems and mobile device support using our patented SmartScoreTM rating system. This ranking has been developed by Louie Andre, our B2B expert responsible for the Application Performance Monitoring Software category.

List of Top 12 Application Performance Monitoring Software

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1. Site24x7

Our score: 9.0 User satisfaction: 100%

Unified cloud monitoring solution with full-stack monitoring capabilities that analyze customer insights and activity for better perspectives for the business. It can give you an all-encompassing view of website performance from over 100 locations worldwide and in multiple cloud environments.

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2. Dynatrace

Our score: 9.8 User satisfaction: 99%

An all-inclusive application monitoring software for DevOps in enterprises and SMBs. It leverages proprietary AI technology for generating actionable insights to allow businesses to more efficiently manage numerous servers from a single, unified location.

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3. Bugsnag

Our score: 9.7 User satisfaction: 93%

A powerful, cross-platform error monitoring, reporting, and resolution software for web, server, and mobile applications. It automates app quality enhancement by offering reliable issue detection and diagnosis.

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4. Uptime Cloud Monitor

Our score: 9.5 User satisfaction: 94%

A cloud infrastructure monitoring solution with an Apdex rating system that allows for the swift pinpointing of potential problems. With round-the-clock tracking, application issues can be quickly resolved.

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5. AppManager

Our score: 9.4 User satisfaction: 100%

A robust and smart application management and IT operations management solution used by IT operations teams, businesses, and organizations to automate the process of monitoring applications.

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6. Raygun

Our score: 9.3 User satisfaction: 97%

An innovative and powerful software intelligence solution that helps organizations and software development teams discover issues related to the health and performance of their applications.

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7. Opsgenie

Our score: 9.2 User satisfaction: 98%

A comprehensive incident management system that facilitates issue forecasting, reporting, and resolution. Unlike traditional issue monitoring and reporting, Opsgenie can forecast potential issues based on aggregated signals.

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8. Datadog

Our score: 9.1 User satisfaction: 98%

This platform helps IT experts and app developers to easily monitor the performance of IT assets, collect relevant data, and generate reports for actionable insights. This approach allows the framing of efficient app management and ultimately better customer service.

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9. Scout

Our score: 9.0 User satisfaction: 97%

An intuitive application monitoring application with Ruby on Rails and Elixir support. This lightweight app tracking platform is very easy to use. Users only need to embed Scout's agent into their application to unleash its robust tools and functionalities. It is designed to help users save time and reduce overhead costs.

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10. ManageEngine Applications Manager

Our score: 9.0 User satisfaction: 98%

ManageEngine Applications Manager is an application performance monitoring solution that proactively monitors business applications. It supports over 100 applications and servers out of the box, up to 50,000 using its distributed monitoring capability.

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11. Super Monitoring

Our score: 8.0 User satisfaction: 91%

An online website monitoring platform that constantly checks the user's websites or online applications for issues such as glitches, lags, and failures, and automatically notifies the user so that they will be able to address and resolve these issues long before their website visitors notice.

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12. Dareboost

Our score: 8.4 User satisfaction:

Online tool for website analysis, focusing on Web Performance Optimization (WPO) and particularly on Front-End Optimization (FEO)

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Application Performance Monitoring Software Guide

Table of contents

Application performance monitoring (APM) software is used by IT units to track the performance of web apps and other software to identify and resolve concerns before they bloom into major issues. There are a number of quality APM solutions available today. So how do you do effective comparisons to select the best application performance monitoring software tool for your purposes? This can be an arduous task but we make it easy with this buyer’s guide that provides specifics on the features and factors that mark out the best application performance monitoring software platforms.

Get to Know Each Product with a Free Trial

A great way to start your quest is to sign up for the free trial or demo of popular programs. Top application performance monitoring software providers present this facility to help you understand their software’s features and do a general comparison with other application performance monitoring tools. We recommend you check out New RelicManageEngine Applications ManagerDatadogMonitis, and Motadata. These products have received impressive ratings and rankings in our application performance monitoring tools reviews.

Targeted Businesses

APM software is commonly utilized by application administrators in medium-sized companies as well as large enterprises to track web applications to discover and resolve issues that impact response time.

Examples of Application Performance Monitoring (APM) Software

  1. New Relic: A software analytics solution that you can use to analyze and get relevant info from billions of metrics across millions of applications and convert the data into useful software. This tool is used by small startups as well as giant enterprises to build faster and better performing software. The main advantage is software developers can spend their time writing new codes instead of troubleshooting them. Key features include real-time analytics, application development, mobile application management, and cloud migration.
  2. ManageEngine Applications Manager: A cost-effective and user-friendly application management tool that enterprises can use to manage and track their important data centers and apps. It allows you to monitor web apps, systems, databases, application servers, and web servers. Plus, it empowers IT teams to spot and resolve application performance issues efficiently and quickly. The platform supports DB2, SQL, Oracle and other databases.
  3. Datadog: This software is designed to help app operations specialists, IT professionals, and app developers monitor the performance of their services, tools, and apps, collect data from varied sources, and convert them into reliable and detailed insights. From there, they can enhance their services, create better-performing apps, and craft effective strategies for their tools and apps. Datadog is pre-integrated with popular third-party software solutions and thus enables seamless workflow for users regardless of geographical location, language, and platform.
  4. Monitis: Monitis is a website performance monitoring platform that oversees the health of your websites, servers, applications anytime from anywhere. For easy navigation, its unified dashboard shows your website uptime and response time, server health, network performance along with custom metrics. Fast, intuitive and easy, it allows you to customize the display and view your data the way you want.
  5. Motadata: An integrated analytics tool that offers core analytic capabilities in a centralized platform. It provides a unified dashboard that allows operations teams to collect, correlate, and analyze metrics and network flow, and prepare a log of data events. Your IT team can become more productive and effective by correlating all analytics for all IT data. The platform eliminates info silos as you don’t need multiple solutions to monitor hybrid infrastructures.

Types of Application Performance Monitoring (APM) Software

There are three main types of application performance monitoring tools:

  1. App metrics based – A lot of tools utilize various app and server metrics. They can provide info on the number of requests your application gets and which URLs might be slow. However, they cannot provide the reasons as they are not capable of code level profiling.
  2. Code level performance – APM products such as Dynatrace, AppDynamics, New Relic, and Stackify Retrace offer transaction tracing and code profiling.
  3. Network based – This type can measure app performance based on network traffic. In fact, a whole product category named network performance monitoring (NPM) exists for this type of programs.

Key Features of Application Performance Monitoring (APM) Software

  • Performance of all web requests and transactions. The main use of APM software is to measure the performance of every transaction and web request in your app. This enables you to get data about the most accessed requests, the slowest ones, and which ones need to be improved. The key is to understand the reasons behind the performance of web requests to make improvements.
  • Code level performance profiling. To learn why your app has bugs, throws errors, or is slow, you need to work at the code level. It is easy to know that a web request doesn’t work. But it is much harder to learn why it doesn’t work. You can do this by tracking the app at the code level to gain insights on what is happening.
  • Performance of all application dependencies such as caching, web services, databases etc. Slow app performance is normally due to an increase in traffic or an issue with an application dependency. Common problems experienced include noisy neighbors in the cloud that cause concerns, failing external HTTP web services, downtime for SQL database server, and slow SQL query.
  • Basic server monitoring and metrics such as memory, CPU, etc. Application issues can happen due to a lot of causes. In today’s cloud and virtualization age, it has become rare for a server to go down. But it still happens and you need to monitor it. Plus, it is important to monitor server memory and CPU. Plenty of web apps still use a lot of CPU and it is a helpful indicator for auto-scaling your app in the cloud.
  • Custom app metrics. Standard app and server metrics are useful for app monitoring. But you can get more value by creating and tracking custom metrics. For instance, you can monitor the time taken to process a message and the number of log messages uploaded to you per minute. Customer metrics are simple to create and very helpful for application performance monitoring.
  • Application errors. You don’t want a user to tell you your app has become erroneous. Developers need to constantly look out for errors and be aware when one occurs. They can do this by setting up alerts for errors and by monitoring error rates. It is essential to detect and fix errors as they arise, because many customers will not call to inform you, they’ll just go elsewhere.  

Benefits of Application Performance Monitoring (APM) Software

  • Performance prioritization. APM software provides insight into application performance metrics as well as production-level performance. This insight makes it easy to detect issues across multiple app environments. Plus, it enables you to diagnose performance concerns without impacting production stability.
  • Production productivity. APM software offers additional tools to identify why, when, and where an app is performing the way it is. It is stressful to diagnose hard-to-spot concerns in a production environment as a wrong step can make a platform go down for a whole customer base. APM software helps to mitigate this risk as it provides insight into errors that may be happening. You don’t need to regenerate an error in a production environment. Simply review the metrics provided by the APM tool to understand the reasons behind the issue.
  • SLA compliance. It is important to comply with service-level agreements (SLAs). In addition to metrics, APM software can produce reports that accurately show compliance. You don’t have to use a proprietary tool set to generate SLA reports. Simply use APM software for the purpose as this will ensure the data you use to report SLA compliance is the same data utilized by other departments for their operations.
  • Customer experience monitoring. APM is a technical issue, but you should not forget the end-user as they judge the performance of your app. APM tools help here as they offer insight into the sales funnel, detect concerns that may impact scalability, and measure user experience in a quantitative manner.
  • Track business-specific metrics. Apart from customer-specific metrics, APM software can also track business-specific metrics. With proper customization and integration, it can separate business-relevant metrics from engineering-specific ones. You can get useful nontechnical metrics from data about application infrastructure.
  • Improved end-user experience. An efficient APM platform helps you recognize availability and performance issues before they affect the end-user. Gathered performance data also offers relevant insights on how you can enhance and maintain quality end-user experience.
  • Higher sales and revenue. Most businesses nowadays heavily rely on the performance and functionality of their software solutions to provide seamless operations, which ultimately affects profitability. Deploying a reliable APM system will help ensure that your sales and revenue targets are met.

APM and machine learning. Machine learning is improving the effectiveness of analytics, helping in big data analysis, and facilitating deeper APM and insight. Analytics combined with machine learning is assisting in the recognition of data trends and in predicting failures. This enables IT teams to create smart alerting systems that help in quicker response times. Plus, IT teams can make more efficient decisions when dealing with failures and outages.

APM and consumer focus. Another important APM trend is the utilization of application performance monitoring to improve consumer experience and satisfaction. Development teams are using APM to quickly create and launch products that provide value to customers. In today’s competitive business environment, it is essential to adopt a customer-centric approach. Therefore, APM is sure to be used in multiple verticals and industries.

Improved data security and control. SaaS APM software platforms are increasingly being adopted by large enterprises, which have the resources and capacities to self-host these solutions at a large scale. These APM systems’ extensive customization and integration features further add to this growth.

Ongoing shift toward unified APM models. The advancing computing power of hybrid clouds is fast-tracking the integration of APM solution into large enterprises, which results in the continuing deployment of combined on-premise-public cloud APMs.

Potential Issues

Many APM software solutions cannot quickly analyze resource stress or detect infrastructure root cause. Many APM tools are not able to find the reason behind issues impacting infrastructure. They cannot view infrastructure activity bottlenecks. For instance, in a virtualized environment, these APM tools would not be able to detect a storage device or a noisy neighbor on the same host as the reason behind a performance issue.

Many APM products cannot determine how much infrastructure you need. A lot of APM programs cannot show aggregated infrastructure resource use and analysis for all your virtual machines and servers. This means they cannot help you right-size your data center or plan deployments. APM can’t inform you whether you need more storage, memory, or CPU for a specific app component. It cannot help you re-delegate resources from an app that has more CPU or storage than it needs.

The solution

The solution for the above challenges is to use an APM solution along with an infrastructure monitoring tool. This will enable you to detect a performance concern with the APM tool and then utilize infrastructure monitoring to identify and resolve the root cause.

APM Best Practices

Achieving genuine APM outcomes requires the need to implement the essential application performance monitoring best practices. These include:

  • Tracking cloud applications
  • Monitoring mobile apps
  • Recording end-user response time of software solutions
  • Observing app’s third-party services
  • Elevating one’s benchmarks in transaction monitoring of deployed applications

A key benefit of end-to-end software monitoring is being able to manage performance-related issues for core business solutions. Deploying APM platforms for your business applications helps enhance the end-user experience, which is essential to any business operations.

Key Aspects to Consider in Selecting the Right APM Solution

  • SaaS vs on-premise deployment. Decide if you need SaaS-only, on-premise, or options for both.
  • Programming language support. Determine the types of applications that you must monitor.
  • Cloud support. Make a shortlist of cloud providers that can offer the best cloud-based services that you need.
  • Pricing. Decide if you need a flexible, per month per server pricing vs site license.
  • Architecture. Is the APM system flexible or robust enough to scale easily?
  • Ease of use. For all internal users, the solution should be fast and easy to deploy, use, and maintain
  • Agent vs. agentless. Recognize if you’ll use agentless or agent-powered monitoring
  • Reporting and analytics. Outline the reports and KPIs that your business uses
  • Technical support. Determine the type and extent of available support options.
  • Security. Establish if you need an APM with built-in security or will rely on third-party protection.

List of Application Performance Monitoring Software Companies

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Super Monitoring

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Things to consider when you invest in a SaaS

The first and most important thing is to make certain the app is right for your firm’s needs. Do not worry about the delivery method and pricing model and focus on getting the appropriate program. Second, you should invest some time to do proper research on the background of the provider and the functionality of the product. Otherwise, you may end up paying a high cost if the software proves to be a bad fit.

Another important point is you should always read the contract and understand the terms and conditions. SaaS contracts are known for clever phrasing, so be sure you know what you are getting into. Do not get chumped into an evergreen contract. Be certain about the renewal terms as well as the notice time required to cancel the renewal.

You will be surprised to learn the gains you can obtain by negotiating smartly. SaaS software is a competitive market and providers will be willing to give you a price reduction to earn your business and continue it. Make use of this chance to save some money.
Realize that the teaser rate is presented only for a short period. Learn about the total cost you need to pay after the initial discount ends. Also, estimate the long-term cost to know what you are getting into.

Frequently asked questions about Application Performance Monitoring Software

What is the best application performance monitoring software?

The best application performance monitoring software is Site24x7. This cloud-based integrated APM solution from Zoho is packed with all the essential tools to conduct efficient app monitoring using a single platform.

Site24x7 offers an extensive range of APM and related features, including network monitoring, server tracking, and website management. Aside from these, it also provides third-party and API integration.

In addition, it also offers status page support, AI-based alerting, and IT automation, including comprehensive insights into various cloud environments, including Google Cloud Platform, Microsoft Azure, and Amazon Web Services.

What are the benefits of application performance monitoring software?

Here are some of the key benefits that APM solutions provide:

Improved end-user experience. A reliable APM solution helps users to effectively identify important performance and availability issues of apps prior to affecting the end-user.

Customer experience monitoring. APM solutions provide relevant insights into the app usage experience of customers and end-users.

Monitor business-specific metrics. This type of solution can also monitor how all IT assets affect every task and transaction in an entire business operation.

Operational productivity. APM tools provide added capabilities to determine where, when, and why an app functions as it is.

Performance prioritization. APM software can generate data-driven insights into production-level performance and app performance metrics.

Higher sales and revenue. Using a dependable APM platform will help guarantee that your sales and revenue targets are achieved.

SLA compliance. APM platforms also help businesses to better comply with service-level agreements (SLAs).

What are the features of application performance monitoring software?

These are the top features of application performance monitoring software in the market today:

Application errors. This provides the essential capability for detecting and fixing application errors as they emerge.

Basic server metrics and monitoring and metrics. Offer fundamental tracking and measures for CPU, memory, and other IT assets.

Custom app metrics. While basic server and software metrics remain useful, customized app metrics provide more value.

Performance of all application dependencies. This covers the performance monitoring of databases, web services, caching, etc.

Profile of code-level performance. Deep, code-level monitoring enables IT teams to better identify the causes of poor app performance at their very source.

Performance of all web requests and transactions. A core APM software function is the performance measurement of every transaction and web request of an application.

What is the easiest application performance monitoring software to use?

These are the easiest application performance monitoring software that you can use for your business:

Opsgenie. IT DevOps and operations teams use this advanced APM tool to help simplify the complex task of issue monitoring. It offers user-friendly detection, reporting, and resolution approaches to quickly solve IT issues.

Uptime Cloud Monitor. This is an easy-to-use APM platform that allows even novice, non-IT users to quickly use it for data collection. It also offers pre-built dashboards that provide quick outcomes.

AppManager. This APM empowers IT operations teams to easily resolve IT performance and availability issues. It comes with user-specific views that help hasten information access.

What is a good free application performance monitoring software?

Here are the best free application performance monitoring solutions in the market today:

Bugsnag. This is a free cross-platform APM that provides robust error monitoring, reporting, and resolution for mobile, server, and web apps. It offers an automated approach to improve application quality through proactive issue detection and diagnosis.

Datadog. This free-to-use APM helps IT experts and app developers in monitoring the performance of their applications and technology-based service. It facilitates the gathering of relevant app data from various sources and for generating data-driven reports.

Gatling. This is a free, open-source, advanced web-based APM. It is designed to automate and improve the testing and analytical strategies used by app developers to manage the performance of their web-based applications.

Louie Andre

By Louie Andre

B2B & SaaS market analyst and senior writer for FinancesOnline. He is most interested in project management solutions, believing all businesses are a work in progress. From pitch deck to exit strategy, he is no stranger to project business hiccups and essentials. He has been involved in a few internet startups including a digital route planner for a triple A affiliate. His advice to vendors and users alike? "Think of benefits, not features."


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