Ed Sheeran fans took to Twitter last week to criticise Computicket, following its website appearing to fall over under demand for concert tickets.
The platform opened ticket sales for Sheeran’s concert in Cape Town on 28 June 2018, and suffered downtime when users attempted to use its services.
“Public tickets have been placed on hold due to technical difficulties,” stated Computicket at the time.
On 29 June, Computicket opened ticket sales for Sheeran’s concert in Johannesburg, with two show days available.
As with the Cape Town show, the site appeared to fall over as users attempted to buy tickets.
Users reported being placed in a holding queue for tickets, but then being redirected to the site’s home page. Tests by MyBroadband yielded the same result.
It was also observed that Computicket’s URL changed from “online.computicket.com” to “static.computicket.com” soon after the Johannesburg ticket sales opened.
6,000 requests per minute
While many music fans and Computicket users were quick to slate the company for failing to provide a smooth experience, many techies were more interested in the amount of traffic that caused the company’s online systems to buckle.
MyBroadband spoke to Computicket about the Ed Sheeran ticket sales, and the company said interest from users superseded all previous shows.
“Ticket requests for events that attract overwhelming response will put any ticketing system under pressure. The Computicket system peaked at 182 ticket requests per second, averaging just over 6,000 requests per minute,” said Computicket.
“In addition to its online platform, there are over 1,000 points of sale located throughout the country, which are all linked to the same infrastructure and firewalls.”
Computicket said in an effort to provide a better customer experience for large-scale events, its website uses cloud infrastructure that can accommodate thousands of people transacting at any point in time – which redirects to static.computicket.com.
“This increases the scalability of the ticketing site and expands its infrastructure, allowing more users at once, thereby ensuring that customers wishing to make a ticket purchases for other events or services offered by Computicket – online.computicket.com – are not impacted by the high-volume event,” said Computicket.
Computicket said it also has a bouncer service in place that limits the number of users through to the booking site, holding people at the “front door” of their site.
“This facility checks if there is space available for users to go through to the booking pages and, if not, will hold them in a queue outside the booking section until they can be accommodated. ”
It said this allows for transactions already in the queue to be processed faster – which speeds up the ticket selection and payment process.
“On Thursday, however, the standard online platform – online.computicket.com – experienced a problem, due to an unexpected increase in traffic on its site and impacted on the Ed Sheeran ticket sales for approximately an hour.”
“Ticket sales for the Johannesburg concerts took place throughout Friday morning, with intermittent challenges faced by a few users due to the large volumes experienced on the site,” it said.