Are you using Oracle Retail Suite, hybris, Intershop, another packaged framework or a custom developed platform for your ecommerce site?

Nisa Retail, a British member-owned organization, runs one of the UK’s largest B2B ecommerce sites. They use Oracle Retail software (formerly Retek) to capture orders; initially it proved functional but difficult to use.

With the specific aims of improving usability and performance, they asked Intechnica to redesign the Order Capture System (OCS). They used a mixture of .Net 3 with C# and Oracle to rework the front-end systems.

Performance Improvements

Nisa Retail are now using  dynaTrace in Test and Production, so they have tangible proof that performance improvements they make hit users in the real world and create a better experience going through the site.

A few examples are presented below – more will be covered during a live webcast on 12 July

ASP Control – Performance Bottleneck Identified

It was taking customers an unusually long time to get a summary of their order. This is a critical interaction on an ecommerce site: if the page takes too long to load, users will lose confidence in your ability to correctly process their order.

Executing this particular ASP control was causing the order summary page’s load time to double
Executing this particular ASP control was causing the order summary page’s load time to double

Over half the load time was down to just one ASP control, and in particular its execution time. Identifying this bottleneck provided two benefits: firstly, of course, they sped up the Order Summary page load time, so customers placed more orders. Secondly, it provided deeper insight into the OCS application as a whole – a useful starting point for making more proactive performance improvements proactively.

More Caching, Better Experience

Response times on the Home page, one of the first pages customers see, were periodically long enough to affect user satisfaction levels. A large number of very similar calls were being made to the database, and they weren’t necessarily delivering anything new (from the user’s perspective), just slowing the page down. Take a look at how small the scroll bar is in the sequence diagram below to get an idea of how many calls were being made!

Many more database calls were being made than were needed
Many more database calls were being made than were needed

The natural solution was to implement more caching – in this case, on a per-user and per-session basis. A number of easily-identifiable, quick-to-implement changes like this can have a dramatic effect on user experience.

Conclusion

Traffic on Nisa Retail’s site is steadily increasing, but due to these and other optimizations, performance is around three times better. The result: more revenue from satisfied, repeat customers, and less calls to the support desk.

Find Out More – Register

Register for the live webcast Nisa Retail: Improving Service and Cutting Costs with dynaTrace on 12 July at 10:30am UK time / 11:30 Continental Europe time. The webcast will be recorded, so if you can’t make it don’t worry – register anyway, and we’ll send the recording to you so you can watch it on-demand.