The most important task of a hosting company is to keep web shops available to online visitors. Put the website up on a server, connect it to the internet, done! You’d think. Other rules apply when e-commerce platforms are concerned. After all, online stores have very different challenges such as visitor peaks during promotions or hackers looking for credit card data. Our Hypernode platform is fully adapted to the needs of Magento and Shopware stores. In this blog, I’ll highlight three of Hypernode’s tricks that ensure your online store always remains available to your most important visitors: those who convert.
You Can Have Too Much of a Good Thing. Even ‘Too Many’ Visitors.
Let’s take a better look at visitor numbers and peaks. Lots of visitors sounds great, but too much traffic isn’t necessarily good for your store. A nice promotion, successful mailing or approaching holidays can lead to many more visitors. You can easily compensate for expected peaks by upgrading your plan for a few days, so your store doesn’t lack for resources. What if you underestimate the number of visitors, though? Or you’re caught with your pants down, as the visitors aren’t humans, but bots? When your visitors exceed your hosting resources, your store will respond more slowly, or even go down completely. We do our best to incorporate as many smart tricks in Hypernode as we can to keep you out of trouble, even at moments like these.
#1 Protection Against Unwanted Bots
What do you do if it turns out most of your resources are used by bots? Some bots are useful (those belonging to Google, for instance), but as long as you’re not selling to China, a Chinese search engine bot won’t make you a penny. They can be pretty overactive, though, as we know from experience. A waste of resources you’d rather use for paying customers.
That’s why we made it possible for you to analyze your access logs and then block unwanted bots using the Command Line interface. We’ve even taken the initiative to block some for you already. We’re also proactive in our support. If we notice your store’s performance is suffering due to an overenthusiastic web crawler, you’ll receive an email from us. This will explain how to restrict the frequency of this bot’s visits to your store yourself.
#2 Smart Request Handling
When your store has lots of visitors and requests to process, the store may hit your Hypernode limits, and even go offline eventually. To prevent that from happening we’ve implemented the following trick on the Hypernode platform: smart request handling. This works by determining whether a request is still ‘valid’, or if no-one ‘over there’ actually needs the server to provide the requested data any longer. If the request isn’t valid (any more), it gets deleted, freeing up more resources for new requests.
A bit too abstract for you? A simple example: imagine that your store is processing a lot of visitors, and having a hard time as it’s approaching its limits on Hypernode. Visitors are getting impatient and start repeatedly refreshing the page, or just clicking stuff at random. All those requests end up on a wait list, but the only one that actually matters is the most recent one. That’s the only request the visitor cares about. Hypernode will ignore all previous requests by the same user and just process the last one. Super smart and super effective. We’ve seen in practice how often this mechanism can really help keep a store up and running.
#3 Brute Force Protection
Magento stores are great hacking targets. Brute force attacks tend to focus primarily on the /admin and /downloader sections. Extremely annoying, as these attacks (with thousands of requests at once) cost you important resources that you’d rather reserve for paying customers. You also need to be careful that your store’s backend doesn’t get hacked, with all the resulting consequences.
There are various measures you can take to protect your store from hackers yourself, and Hypernode helps, too. We can eliminate most attacks on your store through adaptive filtering. If an attack exhibits robot-like characteristics and make multiples log-in attempts, it immediately gets blocked at the source. This is a self-learning process, which means it will keep getting more effective.
We’ve Got Your Back!
Temporarily increasing your resources in anticipation of high visitor numbers is a much better idea than just crossing your fingers and hoping for the best. However, you won’t always be able to predict who or what will visit your store, nor the volume. At those nerve-wracking moments, Hypernode is there to firmly guard your store’s back, so you can keep selling as if nothing’s the matter.
Have you become curious about our Hypernode platform? Try it for free using our 14-day trial and discover why it’s the last Magento hosting platform you’ll ever need!