This article has been written by Sujain Thomas and Jack Dawson. Sujain is a data IT professional who works closely with remote DBA experts to provide her clients with fantastic DBA services to solve their data problems. She enjoys writing on database administration services and other topics in the IT field. For more information visit to Twitter and Facebook. Jack is a web developer and UI/UX specialist. He likes to share knowledge and points of view with other developers and consumers on platforms.
Social media today is a multi-billion dollar industry and it is no wonder millions of sites are being built daily. Facebook boasts over 1.71 billion active monthly users while Twitter sees 100 million users logging in daily. Add to this equation other popular social media platforms including WhatsApp, LinkedIn, Google+, and Instagram and you start appreciating the reason every brand requires a strong social media platform.
There is no denying there is good money to be made on social media whether you are a blogger or a brand seeking to leverage these numbers. The best social media sites have a flawless execution which makes them even more popular with followers. The secret in the success of these sites is of course the database set up.
Role of a Database
Creating a social media site database, even with all the available online tools, is not easy. There are myriad factors to consider and you might not even have the necessary skills to pull it off. Remote DBA experts come in handy not only in building your site’s database but also in maintaining the same. The role of a good database setup goes largely unmentioned yet this will either make or break your site.
On a social platform, many queries are being made on thousands of profiles and your database needs to perform optimally. If you want to make money from your social media site, then you need a strong database to guarantee no downtime and fast loading speeds. The way a database is managed will determine whether users will return or not. If you are using social media for lead generation, then you must ensure the database is optimized to provide a seamless experience on your site.
Factors to Consider in a Social Media Site Database
While there is money in social media, it is also true that many sites don’t take off. This mostly has to do with the database setup, which is largely ignored. For your social media site to rank highly and convert, then you must invest in an organized database that will allow users to create profiles and operate their profiles seamlessly. The database layout has to be done right from the start to avoid costly overhauls or losses in future.
There are some basics required for any database including:
- Backup and recovery systems.
- Monitoring, alert and audit systems.
- Technical support to avoid bugs and glitches
A backup system in the contemporary online environment is a no-brainer. Data loss can ruin your investment and your DBA should have it set up. In terms of operability, you have to consider the traffic expected for your site. Social media sites handle large volumes of traffic once they become popular. A good website should have the capacity to handle current and future traffic to avoid downtime. More importantly, your DBA should have the tools to constantly monitor the database and ensure everything is working optimally. Alert systems are crucial in detecting and highlighting emerging issues to ensure they are promptly fixed.
These are general considerations for any website but social media sites have their peculiarities. Here are some of the features your DBA will look out for when choosing the best database for your social media site:
Response times are a holy grail when it comes to social media sites. Users want a seamless experience and to guarantee that, you can go ahead to cache for reads and buffering writes. Caching is one of the most popular techniques in improving a site’s performance. By buffering writes, you are guaranteed of good response time at peak times.
When building your social media site, the idea is to build traffic over time. It is important to think of the optimal number of concurrent users you can handle. Consider the requests-per-seconds (RPS) your site can cope with. The best database will support write scaling, read-scaling and use of algorithms.
Before picking one database over the other, look at the type of faults it can handle and those it can’t. Fault tolerance will give you an idea of how badly the social media site will be affected in case of a fault. When choosing a database, look for one that has huge tolerance for faults.
These three factors are crucial when picking your database for your social media site. To avoid building a social media site that will not bring nay returns, it is also important to consider the best practices for these databases. Here are a few:
- Don’t skip any functionality: Technology today is evolving rapidly and your database must be created with this in mind. It is important for your DBA to consider future needs for your social media site.
- Leverage power of the database: A social media site database is not a data dump rather an independent application. A database is a powerful tool that can be used to enhance the performance of your site.
- Input of DBAs: One pitfall of database design is to develop the platform only to call in DBAs at the last phase. These experts must be actively involved in all stages to ensure essential details are included in the layout.
- Borrow tested ideas: While everyone is moving towards trending databases, it is important to borrow ideas from existing and highly performing databases. While everyone is moving towards NoSQL databases, there are still large social media platforms such as Twitter using MySQLwith great success.
Social media is now an integral part of modern business. Individuals and corporate bodies are making millions out of their social media sites. To gain such success, you must be ready to research and invest in a database that can handle the traffic you are targeting. With so many alternatives around, social media users have become choosy and you need to improve the user experience on your site to retain them. This requires a seamlessly working and scalable database. With a DBA monitoring your site, the chances of success are even greater.