At the Core
18 October 18

Run an eCommerce Site? Downtime Costs You More than You Think

In the business of eCommerce a sound disaster recovery plan and solution are vital to your success

eCommerce suppliers around the globe face an increasingly competitive landscape. To thrive, they must continually invest in the latest software that presents information to potential customers, the newest and fastest hardware solutions to handle growing processing loads, and increasingly complex networks to deliver rapid response time for customer experience and satisfaction. An area sometimes overlooked is business continuity and true Disaster Recovery (DR) planning. Keeping your business running when other businesses’ data stops flowing can be the key differentiator between you and your competition.

In 2017, consumers spent $2.304 trillion on retail eCommerce, a 24.8% increase over the previous year, this according to market research firm emarketer. Interestingly enough Italy, the world’s twelfth largest economy, generated $2.310 trillion in the same period.

eCommerce companies rely on their IT systems and network to market, sell, and support their businesses. The traditional 9-5 workday has gone the way of the dodo – consumers are impatient and expect the site they are visiting to be up and running 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Taking on a Big Challenge

Keeping servers continuously online and the network up is a monumental challenge for most.  Software applications are larger and more complex. Artificial intelligence and machine learning rely on millions of lines of code with thousands and sometimes millions of connections.

Just linking all of the pieces takes time, effort, and money. Key to running your business is an IT environment that moves as fast as both you and the consumer.

Complexity and speed inevitably create problems. We have all experienced the pain of having a patch to an application bring the whole system down. Many of us are frustrated when networks can be overwhelmed with traffic, say on Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and during a successful promotion. Not to mention natural disasters, such as hurricanes and floods, that not only destroy homes and livelihood and disrupt families, they inevitably take whole business systems offline. Fortunately, there are options for businesses to protect their data, their networks and ultimately their success by providing seamless, continual access to their eCommerce engine.

The High Cost to Your Business

How much does downtime cost? Lots! According to Gartner Inc., the average cost of network downtime is around $5,600 per minute – that is an amazing $300,000 per hour! And sadly, many networks can be offline for hours at a time regardless of how the service was interrupted in the first place.

And it is not just lost potential revenue. When your site goes down or is inaccessible, employees spend their time figuring out what went wrong and searching for workarounds. Customer service and expansion get put on the backburner, further exacerbating an already untenable situation leading to even greater potential loss.

And your brand suffers. When customers cannot access needed services they can become unhappy and move to a competitor. Enter social media and bad news travels nearly instantaneously and all of the time and effort spent building a positive brand can be lost in a few mouse clicks.

Many find they need to assist employees and their families before they can even think about recovering lost data – so getting back online rightly slips in the priority chain.

Protecting Your Business

The question is can you have true business continuity regardless of the interruptions life throws at you? Yes! Invest in a world-class Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) solution. Here at Virtacore we offer CoreDR, a service providing customers with a hypervisor-based replication solution, one based on Zerto Virtual Replication (ZVR). Our simple and affordable offering delivers a 99.9999% uptime guarantee and features an integrated management interface, robust replication, and high levels of automation hosted in secure, reliable Equinix Tier 3 data centers.

You know how to invest in and run a successful eCommerce business. Now take the time to invest in a DRaaS solution run by a world-class company like Virtacore, to keep your business up and running, your customers, and provide peace of mind to your employees and your leadership.

By Paul Borror, Vice President, Sales and Client Services, M3COM/Virtacore

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