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Preparing for the 2019 Festive Season: Planning for Black Friday Part 2

Web Hosting Blog

Last week we kicked off our blog series centered on various topics around the importance of preparing your server and website for busy periods. As we mentioned before, this is an important time of year to begin these considerations as we will soon be entering the festive period, starting with Black Friday.

To recap on last week’s blog, Black Friday will fall on Friday 29th November 2019 this year, and, as has happened previously, many retailers will be extending their offers in to Cyber Monday the following week and even beyond there. Last week we talked about the strategies you might consider taking to make the most of Black Friday for your website and business. These were:

  • Creating mailing lists early to avoid the high demand cost for advertising closer to Black Friday
  • Keeping your promotions simple, and running them well
  • Making your promotions original and appealing
  • Tailoring your offers to your audience
  • And Knowing what your margins are.

Look back on last Thursday’s blog for more information on strategy preparations.

Today we want to talk more about how you can prepare your website hosting and server for Black Friday. It is inevitable that if you are running a Black Friday offer, you should expect an increase in the number of visitors to your website.

There are a few fundamental aspects of hosting that can make a huge difference to protecting your site during the heightened traffic, ultimately allowing you to maximise revenue as much as possible.

SSL certificates

This isn’t just a necessity for busy periods. If you are taking people’s personal and/or payment information on your website you MUST have an SSL certificate. You’re putting your customers’ data at a very high risk of being stolen if you don’t. If you think you’ll be able to chance it without anyone noticing – think again. Online shoppers are increasingly savvy about what constitutes a secure website and what doesn’t. Add to that the fact that Google now explicitly flags up insecure sites to customers when they first visit, and you’re going to find very few people willing to hand over their card details to your really obviously insecure site. With prices starting from just £59+VAT per year, it’s just not worth skipping on this step, we can guarantee you will lose potential business if you do.

Protect your server

When was the last time your server was properly checked to make sure it was a secure and protected as possible. Hackers are always one step ahead of you, and they’re getting better and better at what they do. A very simple and cost effective option is to install Anti-Virus and Anti-Malware software. Our preferred anti-virus solution, Bitdefender® is a tool that offers next-gen protection against aggressive ransomware families, including Locky, WannaCry, Petya and TeslaCrypt.

Their global network protects over 500 million machines, and is the largest security infrastructure in the world, performing 11 billion security queries per day, and neutralises dangers anywhere in the world in as little as 3 seconds.

CWCS will fully manage the Bitdefender® advanced threat control suite, which extracts known patterns of viruses and intelligently looks for similar patterns from zero-day threats, which other solutions could miss.

Make sure you have enough resources

Many retailers underestimate the increase traffic volume during this period. In many cases, this is not given sufficient thought or testing.  With increased site visits, sites can grind to a halt, or worse, go offline entirely. Customers will simply move on to the next company and you will lose their custom.

It is essential that you plan and ensure that you have a hosting plan that will meet your online demands. Our Cloud servers are an ideal platform to host your website as the CPU an RAM is scalable on demand, and can be increased during peak traffic periods.

Have a backup solution in place

It is essential that you have a backup solution in place, and depending on the revenue you expect the site to generate will determine the backup strategy you should implement. CWCS offers a wide range of backup solutions to suit all requirements and budgets.

If you require further information regarding any of the above details, please contact us today on 0800 1 777 000, or by using our online Contact Form.