Can Your Systems Handle A Huge Surge in Traffic?
Are you sure your systems are ready for an onslaught of clients on Black Friday? Are your websites, calling centers and your computer systems up to the task should suddenly your transaction and user login rates sky rocket?
You don’t want to spend a lot of your marketing budget advertising your fabulous sale prices and not be able to complete the transactions on that spectacular sale day. It can turn your prospects away, losing a lot of lost opportunities instead of bringing in ROI on your sales advertising campaigns.
Prior to the spectacular sales launch you may want to consider performing a full health check on your systems. You should consider checking:
- Security processes You want solid security, but you don’t want the security so expensive that transactions are slowed to a crawl
- Hardware Is there enough storage? What are the CPUs peaking at now during your current high it times?
- Application queries Are there any running slowly now?
- Locking and blocking Are you already interrupting transactions during reporting times or other large data queries that could slow down the response time for users signing on to buy your wares?
We Recommend a Health Check on Your Total Environment
We suggest that you consider completing a Health Check on your total environment. Consider checking security roles and security standards. Are they properly in place so that to the best of your ability you can lock any marauders out of your systems? If you do have an issue will you be able to nearly immediately roll up a second highly available fast-acting system so seamlessly that to your customers your products are always available for purchase?
Do you have the staff to maintain and watch your systems during this time that can react to any alerts before your systems all fail?
Are your servers and databases finely tuned, with proper indexing, data consistency checks and long running queries re-tuned to run fast and while providing the correct response? You should review your queries to examine which ones may cause issues when being hit by thousands of people per second. One second of response time can help make you hundreds of thousands of dollars in sales.
Is your software up to date, with the latest security and bug patches? Is your software in compliance? You may want to consider updating your software before the big day.
Is your hardware up to the task? Do you have enough space available, can you expand for i/o if needed? Spending 10 – 100,000 on hardware now may help return millions in sales.
Why User Experience is Important to Remember
Think of this: The Black Friday customer you lose today — because they couldn’t complete a purchase on your site — may move on to another vendor not only today but every time after. As a consumer, I hate sharing my credit card and life information. To me, the fewer vendors whose passwords I need to keep the better. I may move my buying power to another store if the other store front is much more dependable.
Customer service begins with having the products you advertise for the price and availability that is promised. But if I need to stand in line for too long, I may put the object down and walk out the door. Spending some time and investment today may help make millions tomorrow.
Soaring Eagle Consulting has an upcoming webinar series designed for companies preparing for these events such as Black Friday or insurance registration deadlines. Check out our webinar page for more information.
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