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12/2/2013 - Effectively preparing for Cyber Monday

Cyber Monday traffic in 2012 peaked right around 11:30 in the morning, followed by another strong surge of sales activity just after 9:00 p.m.

What the day after Thanksgiving is for brick and mortar retailers - typically the most profitable 24-hour period of the year - the Monday following Turkey Day is for online business owners. And if last year's numbers are any indication of what it will be like in 2013, today could be one for the record books.

According to a report produced by IBM, Cyber Monday in 2012 saw sales jump more than 30% when compared to year-ago levels. While web traffic for shopping was substantial throughout the day, it peaked right around 11:30 in the morning, followed by another strong surge of sales activity just after 9:00 p.m.

"Cyber Monday 2012 was yet another historic day for the online retail industry," the report stated. "With double digit sales growth and initial sales reports roughly in the $1.5 to $2 billion range it's no surprise more records were once again broken this year."

Getting the site's servers in peak condition
But in order for online retailers to perform their best, they have to be adequately prepared for an increased flow of buyers logging on to web pages. Steve Nice, technical director of the United Kingdom-based IT firm ForLinux, told technology news website IT Business Edge that servers and applications should be sufficiently ready to handle an uptick in demand. This starts by preparing the website's various servers.

Additionally, the website's logs should be checked for free disk space.

"You will need to allocate additional disk space to your log partition, which can be changed back after the busy period," Nice told ITBusinessEdge. "Assign a partition to the logs to avoid server freeze. If the partition fills, the application will continue to respond but logging will cease."

Another key component of Cyber Monday preparation is analyzing how much bandwidth the website has and how much has been used over the course of the year. If it's nearing its maximum, additional bandwidth ought to be purchased from the internet provider.

It may also be wise to reboot the server prior to the big shopping day. If this hasn't been done for a while, it's best to reboot during non-peak hours, which will vary from company to company.

Deep discounts and sales events make Cyber Monday the success that it so often is for retailers. But, issues can always arise that prevent it from turning out as planned. Selective offers CyCurity® cyber-liability protection to help online entrepreneurs rebound from online security breaches that could affect their monetary interests.

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