Don’t Blackout on Black Friday

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The 2016 e-commerce revenue in the US hit a record of $3.34 billion resulting in almost a 21.6% increase in sales revenue from the previous year. Further records even indicate that while 33% sales were mobile users, a whopping 64% was generated via desktop purchases. In terms of average loss, a company can easily lose $5000 every minute if they are not prepared to take steps for infrastructure optimization to ensure that traffic spikes do not result in a crash.Don’t Blackout on Black Friday - Sigma Infosolutions LtdAny consumer shopping online during a peak sale period like Black Friday can easily skip your site if it is found to be unresponsive. The result is that any website undergoing outage does not get a slice of the online action of peak sales and ultimately end up losing revenue. Every minute of outage translates into the loss of hundreds of thousands of dollars that could have been all yours if only the website had been equipped and thoroughly tested to manage the large amounts of influx in traffic.

All these crash and outrage scenarios can be easily avoided, provided the e-commerce sites start planning with their IT and operations team well ahead of the peak seasons to ensure that they are well equipped for maximum scalability. Some of the best practices to follow for a fail-proof sales days are:

Optimization starters:

  • Build a strong infrastructure: Start with building the infrastructure of the website to cope with resiliency and high availability beyond the general traffic expectation so that your strategy does not give up and result in a crash when above expectation traffic is found on the website.
  • Scale to handle 10x of traffic: Web load balancing can enable effective load distribution, connection management, and ensure zero downtime if the inbuilt optimization detects and routes web servers without taking any off-time.
  • Loadbalance the mobile app: Integrate into effective load balancing for mobile apps as well, since this is another growing platform for consumers due to easy portability and connectivity during festival days.
  • Avoid Major Shifts on Website & App: Don’t forget to update yourself with the latest features of the technology. However, be careful of the updating time and the test period because major shifts at the last minute before Black Friday can leave you exposed to technical glitches.
  • Make it seamless: Sales is proportional to the customer’s seamless shopping experience on the e-commerce website. Hence database server shifting is a prerequisite to adapt easily when facing possible outage.
  • Have an eye forever: The Constant review of the server and overall infrastructure will allow the effective management of websites against time lost in maintenance windows. The most load balancing software is fortified to handle to scale the odds, optimize the regulation of sales, and add resiliency to the already existent services.
  • Most Importantly, Be War-ready: Setting your backup strategy and manpower is also crucial to ensure that the IT or operations team is not left hanging in a fix during an outage. Setting up systems for year-round analytics to monitor customer patterns as well as website activity will ensure that any hidden area of concern is exposed and taken care of within quick time frames to lead to an error window free shopping experience for the customers.

Sailing through each festival shopping period when sales are at the peak will help through the next year as a happy customer is always a returning customer. Do Not Blackout on Black Friday. Do drop a demo request if you would want to know how Sigma can help you scale & capture the pie of the festival sale.