Online shoppers are purpose-driven. they’re looking for convenience; they want to quickly find what they want, buy it and leave. That means any e-commerce site slowdown can have wide-ranging implications that could cause them to lose confidence in a brand and may even prevent them from visiting the retailer’s site again.

Take, for instance, web-only audio-visual retailer Spectrum Audio. Roughly four years ago, the retailer’s site went down for about 15 hours. The situation led at least one customer to grow concerned that the retailer wouldn’t send the order so he filed a claim with his credit card company. That resulted in a chargeback, which occurs when a retailer refunds what is believed to be a fraudulent transaction that’s charged to a consumer’s payment card. Chargebacks not only involve the merchant’s direct loss, they also come with interchange fees that merchants pay to credit card issuers.

“I can’t say I blame him when he couldn’t access a website that he had ordered from the night before for almost an entire day,” says John McCann, the retailer’s CEO and founder.

The situation occurred when the retailer was using a custom-built site using a version of Magento CE that it hosted on its own dedicated servers, which it managed in-house. Dealing with downtime, as well as the headache of trying to keep the site up and secure, was one of the primary reasons Spectrum Audio recently moved to a BigCommerce Pty. Ltd. cloud-based e-commerce platform, he says.

McCann is hardly alone. From the merchant’s perspective, uptime is paramount…

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