Big Data Solution for Retailer’s Cloud Computing Performance

Overview

Cloud computing options offer e-commerce retailers multiple benefits, ranging from platform scalability (particularly during seasonal shopping spikes or specialized sales) to significant infrastructure cost savings…but only if the cloud platform has a reliable notification system in place for consumer and service issues.
A global retailer approached Alacer with a problem: how could it improve its cloud platform’s incident responsiveness, which directly impacted the consumer experience and SLAs in place with multiple advertisers? The answer involved big data and using the retailer’s existing information to not only respond to, but predict, issues impacting the company’s overall revenues.

Challenges

The Alacer team believes all successful cloud platform monitoring programs have two aspects – reactive and proactive. To create the reactive portion of this solution, Alacer needed to utilize big data to design a notification system that would deliver alerts in real time with a high level of fidelity. This required an understanding of the impact each anomaly would have on the ecosystem, as well as a more granular understanding of each specific issue that could impact in-place service level agreements (SLAs). Then, to move the client into a more proactive stance, Alacer added options to the monitoring system that would identify and address problems diluting the end-user experience, thereby boosting customer satisfaction.

Results

By using the cloud with Alacer’s monitoring platform in place, the retailer reduced incident response time from one hour to mere seconds, positively impacting millions of users worldwide. This, in turn, enabled the company to off load the need for labor costs for system support personnel. Hundreds of thousands of dollars in SLA penalties from advertisers were also avoided.