As an IT veteran, I’ve spent many an anxious night watching terminals waiting for the load to drop, a server to come up, or just looking for meaning in GB’s of log files.
It sucks bug time.
So I feel sorry for the technicians associated with Click Frenzy who right now are working feverishly to get the servers back up. They would be wondering what hit them and the marketing folks would be caught between congratulating themselves for accidentally making the right call and calling the IT folks to tell them how much money this is costing them.
When the planning fucks up, nobody wins.
Most of all customers lose. They waste time refreshing the page, they check other sites, and then they give up and they decide to watch TV. Or perhaps shop on Amazon or ASOS. At least they can keep their sites up.
Most of the sites I tried to access 1.5 hours after the sale which stopped a nation opened were either down or lamentably slow.
The folks behind Click Frenzy were quoted as saying “We have taken every precaution to ensure our servers will not go down, and we have advised our retailers of the traffic volumes they should expect”. Clearly every precaution is not enough when a couple of million shoppers decide to enter the shopping mall at the same time.
Enterprise web hosts will be the real winners here as retailers are forced to invest in additional redundancy to make sure they can cope next time, for although there will be a lot of disappointed shoppers and the jury is out on whether the Click Frenzy brand has fizzled, online retail will continue to grow. And it will grow with or without the active participation of Australian retailers.
Customers deserve better.