Every online merchant wants to make the most out of the peak season and sell as much as possible during this time. Whether these are traditional holidays or the industry’s specific busy period, they want to provide a seamless customer experience to easily convert the customers and make sales. For this, they need to ensure that the infrastructure of the Magento store is ready to perform. Whatever this annual opportunity looks like for your business, preparation for your peak season should start with your e-commerce site.
In this article, we will go through the five important Ps that you must consider while preparing your Magento store for Peak performance. Implementing these suggestions will require a minimal amount of time but should be given utmost priority so that you can pace up with your competitors for peak sales traffic.
The best strategy would be to start working on these suggestions at least 3 months before your critical sales season.
The Five Ps of Peak Season Performance:
- Predict – Your Traffic & Order Volume
- Put – Resources to the test
- Prepare – Your site accordingly
- Practice – Good habits
- Protect – And update your site
We will discuss each of these in more detail.
1. Predict Your Traffic and Order Volume:
Just a guess of the traffic coming during the peak season is not feasible. Guesses may work at casinos or racetracks, but they don’t work in the e-commerce industry. For your peak season sales, you must consider a data-based approach. There are four important benchmarks that have been shared by Adobe Commerce Business Intelligence which you can use as a guide for useful predictions about the traffic in your peak season.
- The traffic on your store for the past 6 months on a daily or weekly basis
- The traffic on your store during the last peak season time.
- The calculated percentage increase for last year’s peak season traffic over the last year’s 6 months average before the peak season
- Percentage growth in the traffic year-wise between last year’s and this year’s traffic.
After gathering this data, the sales team should calculate expectations for the peak season by using the metric of last year’s percentage growth of traffic against the daily and weekly average of the traffic. Use the overall year-wise growth rate to validate the resulting prediction by applying the percentage to last year season numbers.
Another way for making a prediction to know the required resources is to identify the normal peak sales hour and review the load on the infrastructure places (memory, CPU, disk space). Multiply the metrics to 3 to get a reasonable approximation.
Also, give consideration to how COVID-19 has impacted the sales on your Magento store whether your site might experience peak season traffic levels are far different than last year’s peak levels.
2. Put Resources to the test:
After predicting the traffic and resources for the peak season, you have to test the store whether can manage the expected high traffic. You must review Adobe’s recommendations on load testing for Adobe Commerce sites.
This test will let you know about several deficiencies. You should have a robust process to document the points and to share them with your team members within your IT team so that you can develop a shared action plan to address them.
3. Prepare your site:
Increase the capacity of server or database
After completing the testing of your site and identify which areas require additional capacity, the next step is to plan how to increase those resources. You may need flexible capacity to cover the periods where you expect higher traffic. If you are using Adobe Commerce, then there isn’t going to be any problem as it is scalable during the high traffic time. But in Magento open-source, it can be an issue. If your site is already facing high traffic then you must increase capacity to both meet traffic of peak season and give your organization more resources as it grows. Additionally, you can add Web nodes to meet resource requirements.
Use a CDN:
Content Delivery Network (CDN) is highly useful to serve the customers in a better way. A CDN can super-power the cache, create a global cache network of your static media files, HTML, JS, Style Sheets, and many other files which can decrease the load and improve the speed. You are having many different choices for CNS but in case you are using Adobe Commerce, then you should use Fastly CDN
Update caching configuration:
You can also improve the infrastructure by reducing the hits on your server through the proper configuration of caching mechanism. You must follow best practices of Cache Management and also leverage Full-Page Caching. It is the ultimate way to increase the site speed.
4. Practice Good Habits:
Optimized Images for a faster site:
Images are highly in an e-commerce store. We always use high-quality product images to attract visitors. However, there is a fallback. High-quality images are heavier in size and tend to slow down the site and impact site performance. We recommend the online store merchants to use 72 dpi images that WebSafe.
Update to the latest ece-tools package:
The cloud environment should use the latest version of ece-tools to leverage the enhancement of deployment tooling. In the recent releases, there are improvements in local development experience, speeding up the deployment of static content by up to 400%.
The deployment shouldn’t turn you down:
In the holiday season, visitors can’t tolerate any obstacles in their online shopping. However, you may need to push certain changes to the production environment during that time as well. Do you know that you can configure the project so that the customer experiences zero downtime during these deployments? You can configure Adobe Commerce for Zero Downtime Deployments. Applying these configurations make sure that the customers engage with a live site, regardless of the deployment culture.
Monitor the performance:
After improving the performance you still have to keep an eye on the performance. There are many tools available to know the speed and performance of your store. Some of the popular tools are Google PageSpeed tool, GTMetrix, New Relic nerdlet, and others.
5. Protect Your Site:
Upgrade to the latest version:
Updating your Magento store to the latest will not just improve the speed, performance but will also enhance the security of your store. In the peak season, it is critical that the Magento merchants are using the latest Magento 2.4.3 version.
Even if you’re not up to date, stay safe:
Using the latest security patches will keep your store secure even if you haven’t updated your store. We commend installing the latest security patches as soon as they are released by the Magento team.
At Ceymox Technologies, the best Magento development agency in India, we are having expertise in updating your store and preparing it for the peak season. We can also install security patches to secure it from cyber threats. Our certified Magento developers are having expertise in developing Magento stores from scratch, improving their security, speed, & performance, and implementing new features and functionalities. Let us know your requirements.