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Lessons from Black Friday; your ecommerce website must not crash!

black friday retro

Black Friday may not be the big deal it is in the US, but Canadians do love a bargain as much as the next shopper!

So, while the Toronto Star* reported that most shopping malls were “politely busy", possibly due to deals starting earlier in the week, the same could not be said of some online stores….



Bad luck for Best Buy Canada

Best Buy Canada has tweeted that its famous Black Friday discounts were available in advance on Thursday night. However, when custoemrs clicked on the deals, the website wasn’t allowing they to buy online. Many swiftly moved to competitors’ websites to find comparible deals - and to buy.

Best Buy advised customers that the website had an ‘issue’ a little after midnight, but it took 2.5 hours before enough of the technical issues were resolved to allow ciustomers to make purchases.

By later on Friday morning, Best Buy Canada announced that the site was fully functional again and that the problems had been caused by record web traffic.

What stuck in the throats of many shoppers, who vented their frustration on social media, is that Best Buy also owns Geek Squad computer support company...

Damage Limitation

It remains to be seen how much damage the whole episode costs the retail giant both in terms of lost revenue, and lost credibility. As the Toronto Star reported, the retailer “Should be able to avoid tech-related problems on one of the busiest shopping days of the year.” After all, it’s not as if Best Buy Canada didn’t know Black Friday was coming….


What the story demonstrates is the vital importance of having a robust and reliable e-commerce solution AND having hosting that is capable of handling any major increases in traffic to your website, whatever time of day or night.

While most of us can only dream of the kind of customer numbers major retailers attract, your ecommerce website may experience surges in traffic due to a special offer, promotional activity, press article or timely blog. However, if your website falls over at the first big hit, it could stop that flow of traffic in its digital tracks. What’s more, regaining customers’ trust is an expensive and time-consuming process you could well do without.

Quality web hosting for Canadian websites

The solution is to build a robust e-commerce store using established, proven technology - and then hosting it on fast, efficient, properly managed server space. It’s easy to be tempted by cheap hosting deals but often they are cheap for all the wrong reasons.

That’s why at Akira Studio we offer hosting that’s fast, reliable and based in your country of business. If there is an issue, you call us and we fix it from our end, so you can get on with business rather than hanging on a phone to a foreign call centre.

We’ll be honest, it’s not the cheapest deal you’ll find from a web hosting company in London Ontario, but it’s absolutely what you need if you are serious about selling online. Let’s put it this way, it’s the hosting we use for our own website, and it offers 99.7% uptime, which means our website (and yours) is live nearly every second of the day.

If that sounds like your kind of hosting, give us a call. We can help migrate your existing website to our servers, or build you a new e-commerce system fit for the 21st century shopper, however many of them turn up online on a Thursday evening in November looking for a bargain….

* http://www.thestar.com/business/2015/11/27/black-friday-in-canada-politely-busy.html

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