Online sales channel capabilities are an essential tool for retailers to remain competitive.
In establishing a healthy and resilient online channel, they need to make sure they’re protected if the digital services they rely on to sell online are interrupted.
“Online sales can greatly enhance a retailer’s revenue capacity,” says Lincoln Goldsmith, general manager Australia and New Zealand, Acronis.
“However, these benefits can be swiftly dashed if the infrastructure underpinning the online channel comes crashing down due to downtime or network failure.
“Retailers should implement a robust backup and recovery plan and solution to ensure their online assets and sensitive customer or payments data remains safe.”
Going forward, Goldsmith has identified five tips for retailers to build a robust backup and recovery capability, and minimise business losses from downtime:
1. Look for flexibility
When choosing a backup and recovery solution, avoid being locked into something that only caters to a single type of hardware, operating system, or virtual machine.
Retailers should aim to find a system that offers the flexibility to work with multiple types of technologies, and has the capability to evolve as the technologies do.
2. Find one solution for all
To simplify the backup process, retailers should try to use the same backup solutions and policies for all their physical and virtual systems.
This type of strategy will simplify data management, lower the likelihood of human error, and free up more time to focus on keeping your data protected. A single comprehensive solution also helps free businesses from the risk of a complex patchwork of point solutions.
3. Get good recovery speed
During holiday shopping season, minutes of downtime could mean thousands of dollars in lost sales.
Innovative data protection technology like full disk image backup, which takes a snapshot of an entire system, can help servers recover faster than more traditional methods, such as a file-based solution, which has to restore servers file-by-file.
4. Make it completely portable
Today, businesses need to be able to recover data to and from any platform, so when a system goes down, they can run websites and applications on any combination of available operational platforms.
Retailers should look for a backup and disaster recovery solution that does not just recover data, but also migrates it to any system, virtual or physical.
5. Go for easy migration
If downtime occurs, businesses need to quickly migrate all their data and applications to a working server to get an online retail site back up and running. It’s essential to find a solution that makes this migration quick and easy, without any data loss.
“IT teams used to have hours or even days to bring a server back online following a failure,” Goldsmith.
“However, in today’s fast-paced connected world, it’s essential to have the solutions and procedures in place to get systems back up and running within a matter of minutes - otherwise, you could literally go out of business.”