Boost Commerce Helps 11,000 Merchants Increase Conversion Rates with a Highly Available, Cost-Efficient SaaS on AWS
Fully Remote Business Offers Affordable SaaS
Revenue from search function users makes up about half of an e-commerce site’s total income. To maximize conversion rates, online stores should make it easy for customers to find and learn about products they’re interested in. Launched in 2017, Boost Commerce is a software as a service (SaaS) that helps Shopify merchants boost product discoverability on their pages.
Boost Commerce has no physical offices and a fully remote team working across 16 cities in 7 countries. The startup is cloud-native, choosing Amazon Web Services (AWS) because of its stability, scalability, and cost-efficiencies. Its founders aimed to provide an affordable product search and filtering feature targeting small to medium businesses (SMBs), as many SMBs could not afford leading discoverability solutions in the market. Attracting a high volume of merchants was key to sustaining the business model.
Traffic on peak shopping days can increase threefold, but thanks to AWS we’ve achieved 99 percent uptime or higher since we started operations, which builds trust in our product.”
Director, Boost Commerce
Serving 11,000 Merchants with a Cost-Efficient Infrastructure
Controlling costs is essential so the startup can keep its subscription prices affordable for merchants of any size. As the business grew, Boost Commerce went through two AWS-Well Architected reviews to optimize its AWS Cloud architecture. Monthly costs have decreased 20–30 percent as a result of these exercises, and by leveraging Savings Plans and Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) Reserved Instances.
The business also restructured its applications after an AWS Well-Architected review to incorporate AWS Auto Scaling across the entire technology stack. Using Auto Scaling enables Boost Commerce to accommodate multifold increases in traffic during peak sales seasons.
Boost Commerce grew from 700 to 11,000 merchants in four years. The company relies on Amazon CloudFormation templates for consistent provisioning across customer accounts and Amazon Elastic Container Service (Amazon ECS) to simplify deployment and scaling of its containerized backend. “AWS really helped us remove any infrastructure headaches so we can focus on growing our business,” says Tony Nguyen, director at Boost Commerce.
Maintains High Availability Despite Tripling Web Traffic
Shopify merchants using Boost Commerce’s SaaS report revenue increases up to 250 percent above average during peak shopping periods. “As our system scales up, we are confident that we have consistent performance and high availability with AWS, especially during crucial sales periods such as Black Friday,” says Nguyen. “Traffic on peak shopping days can increase threefold, but thanks to AWS we’ve achieved 99 percent uptime or higher since we started operations, which builds trust in our product.”
Fast Time-to-Market with Serverless Analytics Features
Frequent feature releases are one of the reasons merchants continue subscribing to Boost Commerce. The SaaS includes analytics tools that enable merchants to better understand their customers’ preferences. In a recent example, Boost Commerce developed a detailed report for their users that provides insights on the behavior of shoppers on their pages. As a result, merchants experienced higher conversion rates. Boost Commerce is currently working on enhancements to the tool that would also facilitate suggestions on how to improve merchandising in line with customer interests.
The company is using Amazon Kinesis Data Firehose to load real-time data for analytics and Amazon Athena for serverless querying. It uses other serverless products, including AWS Lambda and Amazon API Gateway, to handle the millions of daily change requests required to synchronize merchandising and product data from its subscribers’ e-commerce platforms. Syncs occur every 5 minutes, even more frequently during sales seasons.
“Without code-based services such as AWS Lambda, this level of integration would be difficult to maintain as the business and volume of merchants expands,” Nguyen says. “AWS continues to release managed services that save us time and effort on research and development, so we can focus on creating tailored solutions for our merchants.”
Boost Commerce designed, developed, and launched the analytics insights feature in 3 months, well within the company’s average time-to-market. Founders estimate that if they had tried to research and evaluate open-source tools outside AWS, the time to launch would have at least doubled.
Reliability of Platform Keeps Merchants Engaged
While the average churn rate on most e-commerce sites is 5 percent, Boost Commerce boasts a rate consistently below 2 percent. The startup receives ongoing support and ad-hoc training from the AWS solutions team to help its engineers identify the right technology for each use case and implement new features efficiently. The AWS team has also been essential in refining the scalability of the Boost Commerce SaaS so the startup can pursue new business opportunities.
One such opportunity is expanding Boost Commerce’s market reach to serve enterprise-scale Shopify Plus merchants, while continuing to serve its core SMB merchants. It now counts 24 percent of all Shopify Plus merchants as Boost Commerce customers. This market segment has become a primary revenue driver for the company, accounting for 21 percent of its customer base.
Founders anticipate their Shopify Plus market share to rise even further in the next few years as Boost Commerce works on new features designed to serve the particular needs of these enterprise customers. “Our merchants stay loyal because of the quality of our solution, and AWS plays an essential role in this, by helping us launch new features and consistently improving our technology,” says Nguyen.
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About Boost Commerce
Boost Commerce is a software as a service (SaaS) provider offering product discoverability and search engine enhancement for Shopify merchants. It serves 11,000+ merchants, including a quarter of all Shopify Plus enterprise businesses.
Benefits of AWS
- Ensures 99% or higher uptime
- Scales from 700 to 11,000 merchants in 4 years
- Accommodates 3x spike in web traffic during peak periods
- Enables fully remote business with no physical infrastructure
- Reduces costs by 20–30% through optimization exercises
- Halves time-to-market for new features
AWS Services Used
Amazon Kinesis Data Firehose
Amazon Kinesis Data Firehose is the easiest way to reliably load streaming data into data lakes, data stores, and analytics services.
AWS Lambda is a serverless compute service that lets you run code without provisioning or managing servers, creating workload-aware cluster scaling logic, maintaining event integrations, or managing runtimes.
Amazon Elastic Container Service
Amazon Elastic Container Service (Amazon ECS) is a fully managed container orchestration service that helps you easily deploy, manage, and scale containerized applications.
AWS Auto Scaling
AWS Auto Scaling monitors your applications and automatically adjusts capacity to maintain steady, predictable performance at the lowest possible cost.
Companies of all sizes across all industries are transforming their businesses every day using AWS. Contact our experts and start your own AWS Cloud journey today.