Akamai launches solutions aimed at speeding B2C

Akamai recently announced the availability of its Dynamic Site Solutions, a suite designed to accelerate B2C sites that integrate AJAX and other Web 2.0 technologies. The company claims its customers will see a five-times increase in Web performance and not have to add hardware.

The new suite includes a variety of new features: dynamic content processing on Akamai servers designed to increase infrastructure offload and faster Web site delivery; content prefetching, which enhances page generation speeds by pre-loading content on Akamai servers; optimizing Internet paths to achieve the most efficient connection; and real-time content targeting based on the user’s preference.

"Prior to Akamai, we would often worry about how performance would degrade following a promotion aimed at increasing Web traffic,” says Terry Matthies, VP of IT at Ross Simons. “With Akamai, we have been able to reduce our physical infrastructure by more than one-third while offloading two-thirds of our Web site's traffic from our backend servers. As a result, we're offering more dynamic content without worrying about performance, all while seeing critical metrics such as growth in Web sales and reduction in shopping cart abandonment move in a positive direction."

The demand for a more interactive and personalized online experience is fueling the Web 2.0 trend. An April 2006 eMarketer survey reveals 27 percent of U.S. online retailers plan to implement interactive tools and 41 percent intend to use personalization on their sites.

"Dynamically-generated content offers a great opportunity for consumer engagement, but it also presents businesses with a new challenge: richer content takes longer to load in a Web page," says Counse Broders, research director, Current Analysis. "Because of this, dynamic content is harder--and in some cases, impossible--to cache, as dynamic Web sites are regenerated every time a user visits or reloads the site. As site traffic increases, generating pages on-the-fly for thousands of consumers simultaneously can lead to increased delays-and even failures-in delivering content. Akamai is offering a unique solution to this challenge."