Web sites hold up to April 15th tax deadline

In anticipation of Tax Day, we decided to monitor the homepages of some of the popular tax filing Web sites, specifically, HRBlock.com, TurboTax.com, TaxAct.com, and JacksonHewittOnline.com. We also kept an eye on IRS.com, figuring a lot of tax payers would be hitting the site for last minute instructions, or in the case of serious procrastinators (of whom there are an ever-increasing amount), to file an extension. So how did the sites perform? See for yourself!

Tax Day 2010 more2

All of the sites performed well, with TaxAct.com taking the gold medal on performance. From April 9 through this morning, the site was available 100 percent of the time, and was delivering 1.73 second response times.

On a hunch that people would be filing for an extension, and curious to see if the IRS was prepared to handle the anticipated heavy flow of traffic, we used DéjàClick to record a two-step script, simulating actual users going first to IRS.com and then clicking on the link that would take them to the page to request the extension. But there were few errors here, too. The page experienced 99.93 percent availability and 10.7 second response times (fairly typical for a two-step process).

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