Most of the sites we work on are already existing and we spice them up and make them more modern. However, every now and then we get to build a site from the ground up such as one of our newest projects, Pan Am.
It’s not everyday we get to work for a high-profile client such as Pan Am, but Keathley Ad, who did the design, came to us and wanted to test our Magento skills and we were up to the challenge.
The theme called for a custom category landing page, something we had never done on previous sites, however, Magento makes it simple by using static blocks and the WYSIWYG to get the desired results. We also added a custom sidebar manager to help with their internal ads to keep customers headed in the right direction. The category and product pages were nicely designed to fit within the bounds of Magento, giving them a clean look and feel. Throw in some custom attributes and attribute sets and you’ve got a fully functional online store.
One last thing that made this project fun is knowing this site will be viewed by thousands of people daily. That is something we hope all of our clients achieve, but we knew Pan Am would easily eclipse that mark daily. In fact, during the first two weeks, the server that was originally purchased by the client was unable to handle the amount of traffic and failed to load balance properly. When we took over hosting their site we decided to go with 2048 MB of dedicated memory to their server. We tweaked the MySQL settings to handle more connections and it uses 1024 MB of RAM itself. Then we tweaked the server to best suit Magento. We upped the PHP settings to have 512 MB of RAM. With the changes, the site went from loading in 14 seconds to a quick 3 seconds.