Escaping the Rip and Replace Replatforming Cycle

E-commerce businesses are in the midst of a tremendous growth period, one that is unlikely to slow down over the next several years. Online shopping—specifically mobile, or m-commerce—continues to grow increasingly popular, with a recent Forrester report projecting a nearly 10 percent CAGR in the space through 2018.

Although this growth is exciting, it may also pose several challenges for e-commerce companies. As site traffic and storage needs grow, e-commerce organizations may struggle to keep their websites performing at levels that customers find acceptable. One of the most pressing issues facing these e-commerce companies is the fact that many are still running legacy e-commerce platforms that are reaching the end of their lives. As a result, these businesses are beginning to experience problems included, but not limited to:

  • Platform outages
  • MySQL performance lags
  • Scalability difficulties
  • Maintenance issues
  • Lack of omnichannel flexibility
  • Lack of data analytics capabilities

Looking for a way to combat these challenges, nearly half of these organizations are either already replatforming—which involves moving an entire site from one platform to another—or are planning to start the process in the next 12-24 months, according to Forrester’s 2014 Global eBusiness & Channel Strategy Online Survey.

A full “rip and replace” replatforming approach has its own drawbacks, however. The process can be extremely time-consuming, requires input from numerous lines of business and may cause data loss. Additionally, there is no guarantee that these companies won’t have to replatform again in several years as they continue to grow; they may simply be entering into a rip and replace cycle.

Still, e-commerce businesses need to ensure excellent site performance if they hope to remain viable options to consumers. An e-commerce site that makes $100,000 per day, for example, stands to lose $2.5 million per year if load times lag by an average of just one second, according to research from KISSmetrics. Must these companies replatform to sustain growth?

The answer is no. A scale-out cloud database built for e-commerce can help organizations handle growth without a platform rip and replace.