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nopCommerce with NuoDB – Part 1

E-shops, or “e-commerce solutions,” have become quite popular in recent years. They’re especially attractive if you have a good idea, or simply great goods, because you can rapidly make your shop and then expand your business rather easily for success. One such e-commerce solution is nopCommerce. It’s free, open source (if that matters to you), and mainly based around Microsoft technologies – ASP.NET MVC, IIS, MS SQL.

nopCommerce is a very versatile product, and not just a simple e-shop. It supports multiple stores in one installation, categories and subcategories, product bundles, customizable checkout processes (anonymous, one-page, etc.), and of course a fully customizable design. You can read about all the features on their feature list page.

My intent here is not to describe features, but to help you consider the impact of having a truly scalable e-shop. When you think about it, it's obvious that every e-commerce (and not only “e-“) business owner would like to have happy customers that return and buy again and again. This surely means having a lot of load on resources running the solution as you grow. Often the hot spot is the database – all products, every review, every “news flash” you put to your site, and every transaction… everything is in the database. Although scaling MS SQL is possible, it’s not a simple task, and especially if you consider that the load can (and will) change throughout the year. Some e-shops often have more than 50% increase in load during the holiday season. With NuoDB, it’s a way simpler problem to solve. And even more, because it’s simple and NuoDB is built with elasticity in mind, you can add resources quicker and add them based on current needs. This can have a tremendous effect on your resulting customer satisfaction and your revenue. You don’t have to spend countless hours preparing for scaling and often overprovisioning “just in case” (though wasting money). And perhaps a worse case, not provisioning enough and possibly losing customers. You can scale quickly to just meet your needs and performance metrics. As you want. A few times per day if you wish.

You might remember from my previous blog posts we now have a solid .NET driver for NuoDB with good Entity Framework support. nopCommerce uses .NET and uses Entity Framework as a database abstraction layer. So we took the challenge, and tried to not only think that NuoDB would be a good fit for nopCommerce as database backend, but we also did it.

If you find this topic to be of great interest you can watch the on-demand webinar about integrating nopCommerce with NuoDB, and then check out the accompanying Q&A in the Forum. You’ll learn much more and you’ll be ready for the second part of this article, where we’ll dive a little bit deeper. Stay tuned.

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