It will come as no surprise that the adoption and growth of digital commerce continues to skyrocket amongst branded manufacturers.
According to a recent Gartner Survey, digital commerce revenue increased by 25% from 2019 to 2021. And, 67% of respondents surveyed were powering both B2B and B2C Digital Commerce as part of their strategy.
This survey data reflects what we see in market: more brands coming to Elastic Path with increasingly expansive and complex commerce strategies.
This blog seeks to answer the common questions we receive from brands with growing digital commerce businesses who need an eCommerce platform that scales. We will cover:
- What does scalability mean for digital commerce?
- Common scalability concerns for growing brands
- How Elastic Path Commerce Cloud handles these common concerns
What Does Scalability Mean for Digital Commerce?
Gartner defines scalability as “the measure of a system’s ability to increase or decrease in performance and cost in response to changes in application and system processing demands.
Examples would include how well a hardware system performs when the number of users is increased, how well a database withstands growing numbers of queries, or how well an operating system performs on different classes of hardware”. As more brands double down on digital, whether expanding to support new geographies, new brands, new business models, or new touchpoints– they need an eCommerce solution that can scale with them.
Simply put, digitally-driven brands need commerce technology that will empower their growth and not hold them back. Scalable commerce technology maintains its speed as you increase your number of customers, SKUs, hierarchies, promotions, customizations, and attributes.
Common Digital Commerce Scalability Concerns
At Elastic Path, the majority of our customers have ambitious growth targets. In order to hit those goals, purchasing scalable commerce technology is key to their success. For this reason, we receive many questions during evaluation processes about our ability to scale. Some of the most common questions include:
- How many SKUs can you support?
- Will you be able to support my sale or Black Friday bandwidth increase?
- How many sites can I run from a single instance?
- Can I have multiple prices for the same product?
- Can you support multiple items in a cart or order? (especially relevant for B2B)
Continue reading to learn how we stack up against the needs of growing digitally-driven brands.
Understanding How Elastic Path Commerce Cloud Scales
In summary, Elastic Path is committed to being the commerce technology of choice for our customers when they launch and as they scale. We are constantly improving our systems to handle the ever-increasing needs of brands. In fact, in the last fifty days we’ve improved the capacity of Elastic Path Commerce Cloud by 50%.
If you’re evaluating commerce technology, you likely want to understand specifics. Based on the common questions mentioned above, there are a few key areas we will touch on when it comes to scalability.
Let’s start with the most universally popular question across brands:
- “How many SKUs can you support” or “Can You Support My Large Product Catalog?”
- Our Catalog Composer and Product Content Management capabilities can support millions of SKUs. So, in short, the answer is YES! We can support your large product catalog.
- “Will you be able to support my sale or Black Friday bandwidth increase?”
- Yes, Elastic Path was built to scale for whatever high volume shopping days are part of your brand strategy, whether that be Black Friday through Cyber Monday, pop ups, product drops, or semi-annual sales.
Our testing methodology includes twice daily performance tests to ensure that brand needs are being met, regardless of day of the week.These daily tests make up one small aspect of the robust program our Performance Engineering team has built to ensure success on your busiest days. A great example of this scalability comes from an Elastic Path customer who needs to support the sale of new iPhones when they drop.
This leading US wireless provider and technology company successfully scaled to meet the increasing demands of consumers. On iPhone launch day, they were able to power 4k product calls/minute, 8k order API calls/ min, 60,000 devices sold (peaking at 3.5k in 15 mins), and 450 concurrent carts/min with 0 downtime.
- “How many storefronts can I run from a single instance?”
- Unlike other MACH solutions that have a limit of 500 storefronts per instance, with Elastic Path Commerce Cloud you can support an unlimited number of sites (or storefronts) from one instance.
Brands who do not use Elastic Path and need more than 500 storefronts will have to pay for each additional instance. For some businesses, 500 may seem like a large number.
But, for B2B businesses who need a unique storefront per account they often have 1,500-2,000 storefronts meaning 3-4 individual instances that need to be deployed and maintained. In short, this limitation ends up costing dollars and resources long term.
At Elastic Path our solution was built to enable customers to use one instance and one centralized data source for all sites. This means that brands can support shared cart across brands, power large multi-account B2B digital commerce strategies with no extra cost, and eliminate the manual task of updating and managing products across instances.The story of reMarkable demonstrates the ability of Elastic Path to support multiple sites running from the same instance. reMarkable, a manufacturer of digital notepads, came to Elastic Path looking for a partner to drive their planned launch and global expansion.
See Catalog Composer In Action
Check out our on-demand demo to see how Elastic Path Commerce Cloud makes it easy to manage unlimited unique catalogs for any business.Watch Demo
In 8 weeks they scaled up from a pre-order site to a fully functioning commerce business running across 39 country-specific storefronts, in 10 currencies. And, during major product launches (like the drop of a new notepad) they scale to 70% increase in orders, with no problem.
- “Can I have multiple prices for the same product?”
- Yes. In Elastic Path Commerce Cloud you can create unlimited price books which means you can have multiple prices for the same product.
Some examples of when this is important:
- You want to syndicate the same product assortment to eBay, Amazon, and Walmart but each channel has different pricing for the same products.
- You want to power your large B2B business where each account has different negotiated pricing for the same product assortment Both of these use cases can be natively supported with the price book capability in Elastic Path Commerce Cloud.
- “Can you support multiple items in a cart?”
- Yes. With Elastic Path Commerce Cloud your customers can create unlimited carts and add up to 100 items in each. Based on our experience in market, we have found this limit to meet both B2B and B2C requirements.
In summary, Elastic Path Commerce Cloud can scale to support your large product catalog, and so much more. With Catalog Composer and Product Content Management you have the control to create all the unique product experiences your brand needs to stay ahead of the competition and delight customers- no compromises required.