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Optimization of the load on the platform

How to optimize the load on an e-commerce platform without upsetting customers and users?

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The world has dramatically changed over the past few months. Some business sectors have come to a temporary halt. Other ones have got transformed and keep on operating. Still, others have urgently developed an anti-crisis action plan and started implementing it.

 

The e-commerce industry had better luck. According to Federal Business Journal, the current situation has led to the «explosive growth» of the Russian e-commerce. But is it really so? And do European and American e-commerce platforms feel just as good? — This is what we got to know from the development team of the cloud-based e-commerce platform Mojo.



How has the global situation affected Mojo

The cloud-based e-commerce platform Mojo has been successfully operating for more than 9 years in the United States and Canada, as well as in other parts of the world (Great Britain, Australia, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, Mexico, etc.). Mojo specializes in creating and hosting sites, selling goods for shop-at-home networks. The platform hosts over 1,500 sites with an annual revenue of more than $ 200 million.

With the widespread introduction of travelling restrictions in such areas as tourism, air and railway transportation, the need to promote their services has disappeared. Advertising on television fell in price, thereby opening up additional opportunities for those business areas whose infrastructure was fully or partially ready for operating remotely. Also, for many people, online shopping has become the only possible way of buying things.

Amid this situation, Mojo clients were able to quickly increase the amount of purchased advertising, which naturally led to boosting sales. As a result, the number of orders and total sales on the Mojo platform in April increased 2 times compared to March, and 3 times compared to February. At the same time, the average conversion rates did not decrease, as expected, and for some products they even increased and sometimes reached as much as 25%.

What happened to the platform after its customers had massively purchased advertising on television

After the massive launch of advertising on TV, the platform faced a dramatic increase in traffic. Thanks to the pre-installed automated monitoring, our team had managed to notice the emerging trend in time and was able to respond quickly. We promptly took some additional optimization measures, which made it possible to withstand the 4-fold increase in the load on the platform servers without a significant increase in computing power. At the same time, it was possible to leave a «margin» for further load growth of at least 2 times, as part of current server capacities.

How did the load on the platform affect Mojo customers

As the load grew, Mojo clients were able to work as usual because the platform kept working stably. Some of them came to realize the actual sales growth only after they had run out of their goods at warehouses (sometimes we were even asked to postpone processing the orders, because clients themselves did not have enough time to deal with them).

Were there many enquiries to technical support? And how did you deal with them

In the current situation, many of the Mojo clients have found opportunities to launch some new and much sought-after products. Moreover, it was extremely important to launch them as soon as possible. Therefore, the number of requests to the support almost doubled. However, thanks to the proactive work algorithms, built in advance, and the tuned processes, the clients got the support as fast as usual. About 90% of the received customer service requests were resolved within one business day.

Did the load affect the implementation of new system functions

Despite some additional tasks connected with the increased load on the platform, we were able to keep releasing on schedule. On a weekly basis, we have continued to introduce new functionality so that the platform’s clients can feel comfortable working with it. We are greatly helped by the work we have done earlier on automating update deployment processes on platform servers. Our releases are fully automated and do not require any participation of the development team.

How do you maintain the stability of the system in the new conditions

Our team regularly analyzes the performance of the platform in order to increase its accessibilty and prevent unexpected failures. For this purpose, we use monitoring tools thanks to which we find the «bottlenecks» of the platform and eliminate them before we might get in a stalemate. Often, our customers do not notice some malfunctions of the platform, which, of course, accidentally happen, and learn about them from our incident elimination reports.

What results were achieved by the platform in 1Q 2020

Thanks to the well-coordinated work of our team together with our client, we managed to achieve the following results on the platform:

  • total sales in April increased 2 times compared with March, 3 times compared with February;
  • the number of orders increased 2.5 times: in early March, the platform had orders for $ 2−3 million per week, and in April — more than $ 1 million daily;
  • a new record: total sales reached a peak of $ 2 million per day, on weekends — more than 20 thousand orders per day;
  • сonversion for some sites reached 25%.

Based on the results of work, our client gave us the following review:

«I am *most appreciative* of the hard work the Mojo development team has done the past 8 weeks. The increase in sales has been shocking, yet Mojo is running better than ever. You are doing incredible work and I can’t thank you enough.»

We are happy to share success with our clients and overcome difficulties together.