Jonathan Woodall, who has been an online retailer for over 12 years now and have used the services of Amazon, eBay & Shopify says “I’ve never seen even once Shopify slowing down at my store or anyone else’s because of a spike in the website traffic on a sale day like the Black Friday or the Cyber Monday.”
Michael Parker, who is the marketing strategist for LuminAID.com says “ Shopify’s ability to handle increased traffic was the exact reason why we moved to Shopify from our old platform.”
To be precise, Shopify handles an average of over 40 million monthly website traffic which is enough to engulf the largest of the e-commerce networks if they do not have got an excellent server setup with fail-safes in place. They did not stop here but for ensuring a zero downtime for their store owners even during the sudden traffic spikes, Shopify has come up with an active approach for detecting and overcoming issues even before they arise. This has been one of the key reasons why Shopify enjoys the trust of over 1 million global merchants today who proudly sell all kinds of products and services.
These include tangible products like T-shirts, Denims, Custom Mobile Cases, Food ingredients, Restaurant Meals, Artwork, Cosmetics, etc. to nontangible products like Services (appointments), Memberships, Consultations, Digital products, Event support, Experiences, Classes, lessons, and workshops, Rentals, Installations (and quotes), Donations, Event tickets, and Digital gift cards.
Today, Shopify’s total platform sale to date from all stores around the world has crossed the $100 Billion mark and there is no stopping for them. On Black Friday and the following Cyber Monday week of 2018 alone the total products sold on the platform accounted for more than a whopping $1.5 Billion. It was also during this period when the Shopify networks have to handle peak orders at the rate of 10,978 per minute and peak sales of $8,70,000 per minute which is a staggering amount of traffic.
Furthermore, Shopify boasts of having a long list of clients which includes FMCG giants like Unilever, Nestle, Pepsi, Red Bull, and Budweiser, Media & Publishing Moguls like The Economist and Penguin Books, and world’s largest electric automaker – Tesla Motors. While helping aspiring entrepreneurs to launch their stores, Shopify also holds some of the world’s largest sales for the Super Bowl, Kylie Cosmetics, and celebrities like Justin Bieber and Kanye West. These “flash sales” are tricky from an engineering point of view because of their unpredictably large volumes of traffic.
So how Shopify handle the high traffic?
Frankly speaking, just thinking about the traffic which comes in for these flash sales can send cold shivering down the spine to any e-commerce store owner. For example – Kylie Jenner, who is the founder and owner of the Kylie Cosmetics, has over 24 million followers on Instagram and they go crazy during these flash sales.
Shopify’s ability to handle large chunks of website traffic has to do with the fact that the company has invested heavily in making its server grid able enough to handle the influx of sales that happen around the Cyber Monday and the Black Friday – the biggest shopping weekends of the year. They do it using a global network of top-notch, blazing-fast servers combined with a world-class Content Delivery Network (CDN) to make sure their sites stay up and running even during major traffic spikes. As a result, the Shopify server is well-equipped to respond to a variety of different occurrences that might drive heavy traffic to an online store.
Is Shopify Full-Proof to Any Downtime?
Like any website or web-based service, Shopify runs on web servers — which are basically fancy computers. And just like any computer, all servers can go down from time to time for any number of reasons.
Servers also aren’t the only “link” in the chain that powers a particular website or web service.
Web servers are typically housed in data centers, which, in turn, rely on electricity, data lines, and other utilities and services to stay up and running and connected to the web.
Shopify, like most tech companies, has engineered a highly robust server setup with built-in fail-safes and redundancies — but as with anything complex, there’s always the chance for glitches that lead to downtime.
But how long are these downtimes for Shopify?
Let’s see what Jonathan Woodall has got to say on this;
“I’ve had occasional problems with Shopify.
The rate at which they occur strikes me, as a former systems administrator moved into online retail, as being consistent with an enterprise that tries never hard to avoid single points of failure and engineer scalable, reliable systems.
The ‘store employee’ end of my shop has been down, slow, or malfunctioning for maybe a total of 4 working hours in the last couple of years.
The customer-facing part of the website, including checkout, has been down, slow, or malfunctioning for a grand total of maybe 60 minutes in the last couple of years.
You really can’t ask for better than that.”
Are Traffic & Downtime the Only Things you should be Concerned About?
If you’re going to build an e-commerce store you have got to be on the lookout for the best in every aspect. And another crucial factor for ensuring peace of mind to the store owners is
Customer Service & Technical Support.
Your online store will be completely digital, and if you’re new to the scene, it’s relieving to have real live humans who can answer your questions. Customer service at Shopify is available through all of the usual channels. You can contact Shopify support 24/7 by email, Twitter, live chat, and phone. There are separate phone numbers for customers in different parts of the world. They provide informed and friendly support though at peak times you will be required to be patient.
There are various other Shopify’s extensive resources available for locating the information you need on your own like their Online Academy, Forums, Blogs, ChangeLogs, Shopify Experts, and a Youtube Channel.
As you can see they are quite rich in resources when it comes to helping you in times of distress!
So whether you are a celebrity entrepreneur selling their merchandise or you are an artist looking to take your art global, if you are selling products online, you need to ensure that your site stays up and running no matter how many visitors flock to your website. Going with a second-tier e-commerce platform might save a few bucks in upfront costs, but it will be far more costly in the long run. A platform like Shopify guarantees that you make the most out of store visitors and will help you turn the heavy traffic into heavy revenues.
We at Spaising Technologies, are a Shopify Partner and integrations specialist, specializing in developing Shopify integrations that connect your Shopify storefront with all the necessary third-party systems and applications which are required to keep your store up and running. From ERP and CRM systems to payment gateways, marketplaces, shipment providers, and other third-party applications, we offer the best-in-class custom Shopify integrations for a seamless e-commerce experience for the owners.