Welcome back to the second half of our two-part article on why every growing Saas business needs to keep network expansion in mind. There are many small online businesses that need very few resources for visitor bandwidth because they have very few visitors. However, if your popularity, online presence, and number of customers are rising, then naturally you will want a much more fortified website to go along with all this increased traffic.
Last time we talked about how a successfully growing SaaS can create more traffic than their own website can handle. This results in a self-inflicted DDoS which is what happens when a website can’t handle any more visitors. We also talked about making sure you’re ready for your own success whenever that happens. Let’s pick up at the absolutely vital necessity of scaling up your network.
Scaling Up Your Network
A SaaS network infrastructure is a complex combination of cloud servers, bandwidth capacity, security, and distribution protocols. Properly configured, you will have multiple servers running in parallel that handle all incoming and outgoing requests. When one server faces too many requests, it can then offload some of its work to another server with room and processing power to spare. However, this overflow method only works if you have enough servers with sufficient space and resources to handle all of your requests, otherwise, you will reach capacity. When this happens, clients lose access to your service and in many cases, the overflow data is lost because there is no room to queue the requests.
Scaling your network up to handle a larger number of simultaneous requests is a complex process of either replacing smaller servers with larger ones or adding new servers to the system, or of course, both. The best way to handle this is with a comprehensive managed expansion plan, implemented by your in-house techs or a talented independent network management team. In many cases, this process can even be done in a modular fashion, keeping most of your current infrastructure available to clients while skilled technicians hook in the new servers, expand your bandwidth capacity, and boost the workload volumes available for your growing SaaS customer base.
Excessive demand isn’t the only cause of service interruption that can result from your infrastructure configuration. Inefficient systems, overflowing log files, and potential security breaches all cause problems that can either cost you money or result in outages. While you’re updating your server capacity is the perfect time to perform checks and make improvements across the board. Network management services can run tests to detect things like packet loss, errors, and even how likely your physical systems are to fail due to overheating then provide solutions that will prevent catastrophic outages in the future, saving you money on repairs and saving your clients from service downtime.
Network Performance Monitoring
If your client base is growing now, there’s is every reason to believe that it will continue to grow. There is a very good chance that your current scaling efforts will eventually be outstripped and there will be a point in the future in when it’s time to scale up again. Knowing when that time is will require constant and reliable monitoring of your network performance. This will tell you how well your servers are handling data, how quickly you are able to provide service, and how soon the next upgrade will need to be. When your reports begin to show your current infrastructure struggling under the weight of client demands, it will be time to re-invest in professional scaling to keep your services at the highest possible quality. As your business grows, so too should your network infrastructure.