High Performance Alternative to Shopify
When you deliver more gift baskets than the Easter Bunny, what do you do when Shopify pulls the plug on a high-volume successful ecommerce site for no clear reason?
Luckily for hazeltonsgiftbaskets.com the project manager already had a working relationship with aMiSTACX, and knew exactly what to do. Migrate everything from Shopify to aMiSTACX, and build a killa Magento ® 2.4.2 shop that is not only faster than the old Shopify site, but costs less per month to maintain.
The Road to Success
It all started a couple of weeks ago with a ping to aMiSTACX on Wickr. The PM for hazelton wanted to know how we could help them out, and what would be the best path for Magento 2.4 performance and stability. Already familiar with aMiSTACX, they wanted to know what was new. As they already knew, we usually have some secret high-performance weapons under development.
Sure enough he was correct. aMiSTACX had just released B24/StarFlare, we had a brand new A51 console about to go public, and we has some great new deployment features and tweaks to our stacks that made them insanely fast.
Hot off the heels of success with aussiestrength.com.au, I suggested we go with the following footprint:
- Magento 2.4.2 OSE on an S3 Titanium Stack
- S3Rocket w/ WebP, Ramjet for Caching, B24 for Catalog, NailTheSale for Checkout, and Matomo w/ Trak for Analytics
- Cloudflare CDN
- Area 51 for AWS Management
- Luma Theme [They already selected based on our previous recommendation.]
That’s all they needed! No Redis, no Elasticsearch, no lazy loading, no optimization plugins, nothing but a blueprinted stack w/ S3 Titanium goodies. Like we say in the engine building world, “There is no replacement for displacement.” With ecommerce we say, “Remove to improve.”
Everything at aMiSTACX is designed for speed, and everything is designed to work together for end-to-end performance, simplicity, and stability.
Remove to Improve
Hazleton did the heavy lifting, and the aMiSTACX team came in to fine tune, fix some issues, and maximize performance for the site. One of the hardest areas we usually face with customers is getting them to change mindset in order to avoid the Paradox Business Model. There already was a lot of trust from pervious projects, so this wasn’t a difficult task.
We disabled and removed all non-essential Magento modules. Then we removed a 3rd party cache warmer and optimizer that only slowed everything down. Remove to improve is what we say. Less stuff is less stuff to break, and less stuff to get hacked.
We made some custom fixes for S3Rocket to add WebP support for CAPTCHA, and better support for S3Rocket w/ WebP and autosync for S3. We also fixed some Magento nags that interfered with the FPC.
Once on the CDN, with NTS in place, and Ramjet Boosted, the site flew. Clocking in milliseconds, this site was now ear-to-ear smiles for Hazelton. I’m sure their eyes lit up when I said we doubled the sales over at Aussiestrength, and that their project paid for itself.
It’s really boosted now!
Since A51 was just updated, I took some extra time to explain all of the new features, and how they could be applied to help manage all of their web sites on AWS.
Teams: A51 allows you to set up developers or administrators with granular access to servers and RDS instances. You can also hook into SMS and funnel alerts to designated team members.
Power Management: Granting ON/OFF power to your team will save you money. You don’t have to have everything in dev running 24/7. Devs can start/stop EC2s and RDS instances upon need. As a top-level admin, you can also get alerts to your mobile when stuff power cycles.
Multi-AWS-Accounts: With A51 Hazelton could manage multiple AWS accounts with one dashboard.
Cloudflare API Support: We hooked Cloudflare’s API into A51 allowing Hazelton to manage caching and page rules from the A51 console.
Scheduled Backups: Setting up automated backups with a retention period is essential for any web site owner.
QnA Bot Reports: Hazelton was very interested in our QnA bot reports. We explained how our MaceyBot uses machine-learning with automated reports back to humans to offer continual improvement. They were also interested in how the bot can handle order flows.
Image: Autocomplete using StarFlare Module
Improved Catalog Search
What makes this deployment extra special is this is one of our first deployments that makes use of our StarFlare search module for Magento OSE. StarFlare is a hybrid module as it leverages both Apache Solr ® and Elasticsearch ®, but doesn’t require ES to be running. This increases performance for Magento catalog search, and offers additional server stability.
Trak was built for Matomo and Magento, and it offers detailed metric on the ecommerce checkout route for your site. When used with NTS, it also has an abandoned cart notification feature.
Auto Scale Future
Since the S3 Titanium package was built for High Availability, Hazelton plans to implement an auto scale architecture in the near future. This will help further reduce costs, and handle high-volume sale days with ease.
Weaponize your Business with aMiSTACX
This project was another success story for aMiSTACX. We offered a complete end-to-end high performance Magento OSE solution to our customer, came in with our Special Ops Team like commandos, and got the job done in hours, not days, and at no extra expense to our loyal customer.
Tired of Shopify? Tired of slow sites? Want to improve your sales? Well….