November 16, 2018
3 min read time

The countdown to Black Friday is on: make sure your website is ready


The countdown is on - we’re just a week away from Black Friday, meaning that you have already prepared your website to face the traffic demands it will - hopefully - face and surmount. In previous years, we’ve written about getting ready for Black Friday because it has traditionally been a peak-traffic occasion, but it has become common for outages to occur at other random peak-traffic times because there are actually other major, but sometimes predictable, traffic jams. As it happens, major shopping days are no longer limited to the Black Friday/Cyber Monday weekend each year - with the end-of-year shopping season beginning online earlier and earlier, and the biggest stumbling blocks lately happening in the US on Thanksgiving Day itself. 

But other events, such as China’s massive, record-smashing Singles’ Day (taking place on November 11th this year, Singles’ Day broke spending records, far surpassing the figures of both Black Friday and Cyber Monday spending combined), or the annual Amazon Prime Day sale (see the Amazon Prime Day 2018 downtime fiasco for reference), pose challenges as well.

None of this will come as a surprise to any business that faces large traffic loads - whether these demands are seasonal, cyclical or all the time. And these days, most businesses across industries are digital, regardless of whether Black Friday affects them. The “Black Friday effect”, i.e. a sudden avalanche of traffic that has the power to bring down an entire site, no matter what time of year it happens, can have tremendous upsides and downsides. Let’s remember one of the times Meghan Markle’s wardrobe choices sent fashion-savvy shoppers to unsuspecting e-retailers. The upside: the double boon of driving massive demand and brand visibility for the retailer. The downside: a different kind of “wardrobe malfunction”… the website crashes and traffic jams that make it difficult, if not impossible, for the retailer to truly capitalize on the visibility.

Scale up and cover yourself

Regardless of the time of year, although especially so in the busy 2018 holiday shopping season facing us right now, make sure you’re ready for whatever traffic comes your way. With Varnish Enterprise, you have all the tools to make the most of caching technology to delivery speed and performance without giving up some of the absolutely must-haves, such as personalization. Available as an on-premise solution, or quite flexibly, in the cloud to scale up or down based on your specific needs, Varnish Enterprise is ready to keep your sites ahead of the game and ready for action.

Be ready for Black Friday and similar high-traffic periods - download the Black Friday readiness e-book.

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