How to Configure Synthetic Monitoring in New Relic

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synthetic monitoring

Your website is the digital face of your business. Any downtime or performance issues directly impact your revenue, reputation, and customer experience.

That‘s why proactively monitoring your website and applications is critical.

And that‘s exactly what New Relic‘s Synthetic Monitoring tool does for you!

It constantly monitors your entire digital ecosystem to detect problems before they happen.

In this comprehensive guide, you‘ll learn:

  • What is Synthetic Monitoring and how it works
  • The benefits of Synthetic Monitoring
  • How to set up Website Availability Monitoring
  • How to configure Page Load Performance Monitoring
  • Synthetic Monitoring security features

So let‘s get right into it!

What Is Synthetic Monitoring?

Synthetic Monitoring simulates how real users interact with your digital assets like website, web apps, and APIs.

It measures availability, latency, uptime and performance from multiple global locations.

how synthetic monitoring works

Synthetic monitoring tools use scripted bots to mimic user journeys. These bots continuously test your endpoints and report performance metrics.

For example, a synthetic bot can:

  • Load your website homepage and measure page load time
  • Click through a purchase flow and track transaction speed
  • Execute API calls and monitor response times

These metrics help you identify issues like:

  • Slow page loads
  • Long checkout processes
  • High API latency

Synthetic monitoring provides a real-time, outside-in view of your customer experience.

It alerts you to problems before they impact revenue and reputation. This allows sufficient time to troubleshoot and fix them.

Key Benefits of Synthetic Monitoring

Here are some key ways synthetic monitoring improves digital experience:

Proactive Troubleshooting – Synthetic bots find issues in real-time before customers notice them. This prevents problems from spiraling out of control.

Performance Benchmarking – Continuous testing lets you benchmark web and API performance over time. You can set performance goals and track improvements.

Uptime Monitoring – Regular availability checks ensure your website and APIs are always accessible to customers globally.

Optimized Customer Experience – By fixing weaknesses uncovered through synthetic monitoring, you can optimize digital experience and satisfaction.

Faster Incident Response – When synthetic tests detect downtime or degraded performance, alerts are triggered immediately. This allows swift diagnosis and remediation.

SLA Compliance – API and web service SLAs related to uptime and latency can be monitored continuously through synthetic testing.

Enhanced Collaboration – Shared synthetic monitoring data helps dev, ops, and business teams align goals to deliver better digital experiences.

Competitive Learning – Monitoring real user interactions on competitor websites provides insights to enhance your own customer experience.

Now let‘s see how to implement synthetic monitoring using New Relic‘s robust solution.

New Relic Synthetic Monitoring Overview

New Relic

New Relic offers a highly flexible synthetic monitoring tool. It lets you:

  • Simulate user interactions from anywhere
  • Monitor any public or internal endpoint
  • Configure advanced scripts for flows
  • Set up alerts and integrations
  • Analyze trends and set benchmarks
  • Securely test internal and external systems

New Relic Synthetic Monitoring provides 7 types of test monitors:

  1. Availability (Ping) – Checks if a website or endpoint is accessible

  2. SSL Certificate – Monitors SSL certificate validity

  3. Broken Link Checker – Finds broken links on website

  4. Page Load – Measures website page load performance

  5. User Flows – Executes scripted user scenarios

  6. API – Tests API endpoints for uptime and latency

  7. Step – Monitors business transactions across services

Let‘s see how to create Website Availability and Page Load Performance monitors.

How to Setup Website Availability Monitoring

Availability monitoring checks if your website is up and accessible to users globally.

Follow these steps to create an availability monitor in New Relic:

Step 1: Create a new Availability (Ping) Monitor

In your New Relic account, go to Synthetics > Monitor tests > Create your first monitor.

Select the Availability (Ping) option.

select availability ping monitor new relic

This will open the configure monitor page.

Step 2: Configure monitor settings

Give your monitor a name, like "Website Availability Monitor".

Enter your website URL, like

Pick a Monitoring frequency like every 5 minutes.

Set an Alert threshold like 1 failure triggers alert.

configure availability monitor new relic

This will ping your website every 5 minutes from global locations.

If 1 ping fails, you‘ll get an alert notification.

Step 3: Select monitoring locations

Scroll down to Locations and select regions to ping your site from.

Ensure global coverage picking cities across North America, Europe, Asia, Australia, South America, and Africa.

select locations availability monitoring new relic

This allows testing website availability from diverse geographical locations.

Step 4: Check availability results

Once the monitor starts executing, you can view performance results.

Go to Synthetics > Monitor tests and select your website availability monitor.

website availability results summary new relic

The summary shows:

  • Success rate – Percentage of successful checks
  • Apdex score – Site availability and response time rating
  • Response time – Average ping response time
  • Violations – Failures breaching threshold

Clicking on Results will show detailed ping results from each location.

website availability results by location new relic

This helps identify geographical regions facing website accessibility issues.

You can also set up alerts to get notified for failures, track trends, and collaborate with stakeholders – all within New Relic.

This is how you can monitor your website‘s global availability using New Relic Synthetic Monitoring. Next, let‘s see how to track page load performance.

How to Configure Page Load Performance Monitoring

Measuring your website‘s page load speed is vital for good user experience.

New Relic Synthetic Page Load monitoring helps track page performance from across the globe.

Here are the steps to set it up:

Step 1: Create a Page Load Performance Monitor

Go to Synthetics > Monitor tests > Create your first monitor

Select the Page load performance option.

select page load monitor new relic

This opens the monitor configuration page.

Step 2: Configure monitor settings

Give your monitor a name like "Website Page Load Monitor".

Enter your website URL like

Pick a Monitoring frequency such as every 15 minutes.

Set an Apdex threshold like 0.5 seconds.

configure page load monitor new relic

This will test your homepage load time every 15 minutes from global regions.

Step 3: Select monitoring locations

Scroll down to Locations and pick regions to test from.

Choose cities giving good geographic coverage across continents.

select locations page load monitoring new relic

Step 4: Check page load results

Once the monitor starts, you can analyze performance results.

Go to Synthetics > Monitor tests and select your page load monitor.

page load performance results summary new relic

The summary displays:

  • Apdex score – Page load time rating
  • Average load time – Mean page load time
  • Slowest regions – Locations facing maximum latency
  • Violations – Failures exceeding threshold

Clicking on Results shows detailed page load metrics for each location like:

page load performance results by location new relic

  • DNS lookup time
  • TCP handshake time
  • Server processing time
  • Network latency

This granular data helps isolate and troubleshoot page load bottlenecks globally.

You can also configure alerts, analyze trends, create custom dashboards and more within New Relic.

This is how New Relic Synthetic Monitoring helps monitor your website performance from across the globe.

Key Security Features of New Relic Synthetic Monitoring

Since synthetic monitoring interacts with customer-facing systems, security is a critical requirement.

New Relic Synthetic Monitoring provides multiple layers of security:

Encrypted Data Transmission – All synthetic scripts and result data transmission is encrypted using TLS 1.2 and AES 256-bit encryption.

Private Networks – Monitors can be restricted to your own private networks and locations for internal testing.

Isolated Script Execution – Scripts run within isolated containers preventing them from accessing system resources.

Secure Credential Storage – Any credentials used in API testing are securely stored in encrypted key stores.

Automated Identity Management – Bot identities are auto-generated and rotated frequently for every test execution.

Script Obfuscation – Scripts are obfuscated to prevent tampering and hide sensitive data.

Limited Script Permissions – Scripts cannot start processes, access filesystem or modify configurations to limit potential risks.

DDoS Protection – Synthetic traffic patterns are randomized and throttled to prevent overwhelming target systems.

Data Encryption – All stored synthetic data is encrypted at rest using 256-bit AEAD encryption.

Restricted Access – Admins have granular access controls over synthetic monitoring accounts and data.


Synthetic monitoring is invaluable for ensuring flawless digital experiences.

New Relic provides a robust and secure synthetic testing solution. You can easily simulate real-world user interactions to detect issues before customers notice them.

Configuring synthetic monitoring only takes a few minutes but pays huge dividends in minimizing downtime and performance problems.

Monitor the vitals of your digital ecosystem with New Relic Synthetic Monitoring for peace of mind that your systems are running smoothly 24/7.


Written by Alexis Kestler

A female web designer and programmer - Now is a 36-year IT professional with over 15 years of experience living in NorCal. I enjoy keeping my feet wet in the world of technology through reading, working, and researching topics that pique my interest.