Scaling in Seconds: How Quikly Goes from 0 to 500,000 Visitors on Heroku

Social marketing app massively scales up during peak traffic with a single click on the Heroku Dashboard.

Quikly brings social marketing gamification with new levels of urgency and participation. Major brands engage with Quikly to create unique promotions called Quiklys, awarded to customers based on how fast they respond to a strategically sent SMS message at a time unknown to participants, with the fastest responses receiving the best prizes.

The time-limited natured of these promotions, coupled with the race against other participants and the scarcity of valuable top prizes, creates Black Friday levels of customer excitement and activation over a very short period of time. In addition, participants can share the Quikly promotion with friends in order to gain a few minutes of ‘advance notice’ to the secret launch, increasing social referral and conversion to these campaigns.

The challenge: high scalability on a budget

Quikly had only two engineers, yet needed to be able to scale for hundreds of thousand of users. They needed a solution that could quickly scale for short periods of extremely high traffic, yet not incur the wasted expense of excess capacity during the other 90% of the time.

The solution: Quikly moves fast on Heroku

Heroku gave them the platform they needed to massively scale with a single click on the Heroku Dashboard. Systems could be scaled up in seconds for a campaign, and scaled completely back down less than an hour later, all for the massive burst of traffic during the secret release of the promotion. Costs were extremely manageable, with more than 30 PX dynos spun up and down only for the specific times that they were needed, for significantly less cost than having an engineer spend time managing physical hardware or cloud infrastructure. Quikly continues to expand their client list with new and innovative promotions and service, all ready for heavy traffic, with the scalable Heroku platform.

Our business has very high scalability needs, and Heroku PX Dynos are what make that possible. We're a startup with a seed investment and two engineers, and our team can handle traffic spikes from 0 to 500,000 visitors in a single afternoon, without any performance issues. We sleep well at night knowing Heroku has our back. Scott Meves, Co-Founder & CTO, Quikly

A recent Dominos campaign exceeded sign up capacity and generated 500,000 visitors for the SMS race, of which only 150,000 were selected to participate. A SMS sent out several days later created a massive traffic spike of users to the promotion website within seconds. One speedy user won free pizza for a year and other fast-fingered respondents received other Dominos rewards.