Today we launched our latest release of our website with some major and minor changes, I thought I would give a quick summary.
We have finally enabled some real filtering ability. Now on any product listing page you can filter based on a wide variety of attributes for the product. Our work is not done, now that we have exposed the ability to filter we are working through cleaning up our attribute data to make the filtering even better. On top of that, we are adding attributes to enhance the filtering and make it better along the way. I must apologize for the last 7 months, those filters were awful.
If you have played on our site you know our pagination was awful, if you solely went forward and backwards it was fine but veer off to a product and back and it was a lost cause. That all is addressed and fixed, now we preserve the state of the page for you. We even went as far as putting a ‘link’ in the upper right, you can now create a URL to the exact page, with the exact sort and the exact filters in place to email to a friend or save for later.
How many people are tired of picking “Credit Card Type”? I was, thus we removed the need to tell us the card type, the number itself tells us what type of card, for instance, anything starting with a “4” is a Visa Card, Amex starts 34 or 37, Mastercard 51-55 and so on. I believe this will save you about .04 seconds of you life.
Those browsing our site over the past couple of weeks may have noticed some intermittent issues. We had run our last two databases into the ground, literary, between hardware failure and fail-over failure we had our share of downtime recently. That all changes last night when two brand new machines went into service along with an upgraded fail-over mechanism, while not totally foolproof it is more like wearing a bullet proof vest instead of a t-shirt. These two massive machines are still being fine tuned and performance should be 5-10% better than the prior servers once they are fully warmed up, it takes 24-48 hours for them to ‘warm’ up (geek speak but actually true they don’t need to literary get hot, they just need to know what they are doing and how often). For those interested in the type of setup we run with, we are using MySQL in a Master/Master setup with MMM Clustering for our databases, these are in a secure dedicated environment due to PCI compliance and privacy issues as well as performance, you can’t beat your own boxes.
If you are curious on anything else we are doing leave a comment and I am happy to elaborate.