The global e-commerce market, which amassed more than US$1.5 trillion in 2015, is projected to exceed US$3.0 trillion by 2018, Frost & Sullivan said on Tuesday, February 28 .
This fast expansion in e-commerce was driven primarily by improvements in technology and the increasing pace of technology adoption.
With the proliferation of smart phones, tablets and wireless networks, more and more consumers have jumped on the Internet bandwagon and grown increasingly confident in dealing with online activities and transactions.
The increased confidence has resulted in impatient and demanding online consumers.
Research by Frost & Sullivan showed that the slow loading time of Web pages was one of the main reasons why customers move from one e-Commerce company to another.
This page-loading delay – also known as latency – translates into a loss of customers and revenue, not to mention the negative impact on a company’s brand.
For instance, an e-commerce website making daily sales of $100,000 is expected to lose $2.5 million annually due to a one-second page delay.
For global e-commerce company Shopify, which hosts over 40,000 active online retailers worldwide, it faces the constant challenge of ensuring the best user experience for shoppers in a multitude of countries from US and Europe to Australia and New Zealand. And as its customer base of online merchants grow around the globe, the challenge becomes more acute.
“We needed a single solution to address the existing large volume of site traffic in the US, Canada, and Europe while at the same time allowing for global growth, particularly in Australia,” said Mr Dale Neufeld, director of Technical Operations at Shopify.
As for Arirang, Korea’s leading global broadcaster, it needed to deliver a smooth and uninterrupted delivery of its content to viewers scattered around the world, especially the live streaming of videos. And its challenge was exacerbated by the rise in popularity of watching broadcasts on mobile devices.
Combating Latency with CDN
Most companies find subscribing to Content Delivery Network (CDN) services the most viable option to combat latency.
A CDN handles the web infrastructure demands in a cost-effective manner, freeing companies to focus on their core business areas.
CDNs can accelerate web performance and bring the content — be it static, dynamic or mobile — closer to consumers, thus reducing latency and speeding up page-loading.
According to Frost & Sullivan, one second of speed boost increases sales by 3 percent per customer.
Shopify turned to CDNetworks, a global CDN service provider to accelerate its web applications and content.
“With CDNetworks’ local points-of-presence, our Australia-based merchants get the same performance as in North America. Neither Shopify nor our customers have to invest in data centres or co-hosting,” Mr. Neufeld said.
For Korean broadcaster Arirang, tapping on CDN services to accelerate its content has allowed it to provide stable and high-quality live broadcasts to both local and overseas viewers.
In addition, users were able to enjoy Arirang’s programs on smartphones, tablet PCs and other mobile devices anytime and anywhere.
And the global performance of its applications and content is achieved without the company incurring a huge cost in infrastructure investment.