This topic describes how to resolve the issues of traffic bursts and server overloads in Century Mart by using Function Compute, API Gateway, Log Service, Tablestore, and the serverless architecture. The serverless architecture features fast scaling, elasticity, and high availability.

Customer introduction

Century Mart is a new retail chain supermarket that has more than 170 stores around China.

After 10 years of development, the business of Century Mart covers hypermarkets, comprehensive supermarkets, and standard supermarkets. Century Mart positions itself as a retail chain of supermarkets and boutique department stores. Its supermarket brands include Century Mart and Lianhua.

Pain points

  • Traffic bursts: Century Mart has a large number of members. When promotion coupons were issued every month, a large number of members rushed to grab the coupons at the same time. As a result, services were interrupted due to traffic bursts.
  • Excessive server demand: A large number of servers were saved up to support online sales promotions, but traffic spikes during peak hours still overwhelmed servers.
  • System overload: During large-scale promotions such as Double 11, complex server maintenance and system overload may occur due to the fluctuating number of users. An elastic and stable system architecture was required to support such promotions.

Solution

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The serverless architecture features fast scaling, elasticity, and high availability and is able to handle traffic bursts. Tablestore replaces traditional relational databases. Function Compute reads data from and writes data to Tablestore and efficiently returns processing results to frontend users.

Compared with the traditional solution of temporarily adding servers, the new solution of using Function Compute, Tablestore, and API Gateway greatly simplifies O&M.
  • Function Compute supports auto scaling and can dynamically allocate runtime environments based on the requests received. The deployment is easy.
  • Tablestore offers fast access and high throughput, which eliminates the need to add additional servers.
  • API Gateway allows you to control access and easily export API documentation.

Benefits

  • Increased revenue: Alibaba Cloud services helped Century Mart break a record of 550 million transactions in the three-day promotion of Double 11.
  • Reduced workload: Function Compute helps reduce the workload of technical engineers. Function Compute is an event-driven, fully managed computing service. You do not need to manage infrastructure such as servers. You need to only write and upload code. The system prepares computing resources and provides features such as log query, performance monitoring, and alerting. All data and business are processed on the cloud, which helps reduce your workload. Without Function Compute, Century Mart must deploy more servers to handle traffic bursts during Double 11. The normal operation of such activities cannot be ensured. Alibaba Cloud helps resolve the scaling issues and greatly improves the data storage capacity.
  • Reduced dependency on technical engineers: Alibaba Cloud provides cutting edge technologies. Developers in Century Mart do not need to study algorithms, but need to only learn how to use relevant tools of Alibaba Cloud. This reduces research and development costs.