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Most of the online retailers and e-commerce companies have capitalized terms like Black Friday or 11.11 (Singles day). Companies like Amazon and Alibaba have managed to create a huge shopping festival on such days across all geographics.
With such a mammoth shopping festival, it is obvious that a small spillover will make a huge difference to even the smallest of the retailer or e-commerce companies. It’s for these massive shopping frenzies most of the e-commerce companies started to piggyback on such festival by coming up with their own offers.
This year we witnessed more shoppers turned to online storefronts than ever before. Looking at all our e-commerce clients, we have seen that traffic on those sites has doubled or even increasing by 10x in some cases, as compared to a year ago. The traffic growth is witnessed before a month as the offers and promotions start slowly and gaining more speed as we get closer to the festival days.
It is not just e-commerce companies that experience such high traffic. Also marketing companies that promote coupons or affiliates etc. Which basically means that traffic growth is experienced across most of the websites.
It’s clear: A new era of retail is upon us, having been ushered in by evolving technology that is quickly adopting digital aspects of shopping. This new direction is also changing customer experience expectations, and many retailers are struggling to keep pace.
Several major retailers experienced significant technical issues, resulting in less-than-ideal customer experiences: Walmart’s customers complained about an inability to access Black Friday deals due to technical website issues, and Costco’s Black Friday difficulties reportedly cost the company an estimated $11 million.
Retailers & Marketing companies are also under pressure to harness newer technology like never before to reach their customers. Today, consumers want to have convenience in shopping also the channel that is being used is ever increasing due to IoT devices, Artificial intelligence, etc. This increases the demand for an improved online shopping experience. All of the newer technologies need an underlying strong Cloud Infrastructure that will enable such companies to meet the needs and expectations of their customers in real-time.
It is only with strong Cloud Infrastructure that technologies like Robotics, augmented reality and virtual reality, artificial intelligence etc are enabling retailers to offer new, exciting features to heighten the customer online shopping experience. Virtual “fitting rooms” on cell phones, personalized digital displays, customer face recognition, and instant payment are just a few examples of how emerging technologies are shaping online shopping experiences.
This new demand in experience also brings new challenges and new ways to fail. We witness the likes of Walmart and Costco this year. The new technologies mean that retailers are under increased pressure to meet the three main requirements for seamless customer experience: speed, reliability, and security.
Speed – Customers expect to be able to research, locate and purchase their desired item quickly. This requires an infrastructure that can handle a large flow of traffic without slowing down or freezing. Speed is not just a factor of bandwidth. It is a combination of how the overall cloud infrastructure performs from Compute, Storage, Load Balancers, etc.
Reliability – The last thing customers want is to be at the checkout, and the website/app no longer works. They want to know that, even though it is the peak retail season, website crashes won’t stop them from capitalizing on some of the great promotions.
Security – Consumers have seen prominent, trusted companies hit with major security breaches (i.e. Equifax, Yahoo, Playstation, CapitalOne, Hostinger), and they want to know that their data is protected. We are also witnessing Regulators across the globe are beginning to listen, implementing laws and altering expectations around data protection. The California Consumer Privacy Act and the General Data Protection Regulation (and more) will mean increased restrictions on what these new technologies can do–but they won’t change consumers’ expectations of a flashy, intelligent, reliable and swift online shopping experience. To comply with such regulations, it is imperative for companies to have a highly secured Cloud Infrastructure.
How to Survive the Holiday Influx: Prioritize Strategic Vendor Partnerships
The primary candidate for such short periods of extreme High volume is a reliable cloud infrastructure provider a provider like TD Web Services who can provide Infrastructure-As-A-Service. If a retailer is setting up their own infrastructure the task can be daunting: the intricate, interconnected and complex challenges can indeed be time-consuming and cost-prohibitive when undertaken on your own.
For example, TDWS Cloud offers scalable solutions, as an industry leader and with a proprietary technology we are ensuring your business can remain up-and-running during high-traffic times like the holiday shopping season–without breaking the bank.
This evolution in the way consumers are interacting with the retail industry shows no signs of slowing. As with most technological developments, the rate of change is exponential, which means companies need to think both in the short-term and long-term if they want to remain viable. This is where TDWS Cloud Solutions can help you & can ensure that you can scale up and down without breaking a sweat.
To meet these evolving and challenging demands, retailers should work with a comprehensive cloud hosting solution that includes hybrid-ready product portfolios, iron-clad security solutions, core uptime, and an extensive network. TD Web Services eCommerce Hosting Solutions provide all of these, as well as other key features:
Instant Scalability – Always quick and easy to deploy new virtual machines to meet spikes in demand.
Great Price-to-performance Ratio – Removes the weight of capital expenditures, reducing costs, increasing efficiency and allowing retailers to always have the latest technology.
Flexible and Hybrid-ready – Complete flexibility to work with any e-commerce platform and a choice of powerful VM’s, public and/or private clouds, CDN, cybersecurity, and hybrid solutions to optimize any e-commerce infrastructure.
Global Presence – A global network that delivers 99.999% core uptime and 6+ Tbps bandwidth to deliver optimal performance.
Deploying the right solution with the right hosting partner can not only help retailers & marketing companies thrive during peak online shopping periods this holiday season but also prepare them for continued growth into 2020.