Top 5 websites with the highest traffic running on Kentico CMS

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How Kentico CMS handles very high traffic and its sudden peak loads?

Please see updated version of this article: 8 Interesting Top Numbers of CMS Based Websites


Which website on Kentico CMS gets the highest traffic?

With more than 7.000 websites across 84 countries it’s quite hard to find the one which handles the highest traffic. In addition, high traffic isn’t the only thing a solid CMS must be able to handle; it is the load peaks which deeply prove the stability of the system. I tried to identify some of these websites, which led to the following short list*:
  • NewsMax, website bringing the latest news, investigations and commentaries
  • Conduit, website of the Conduit Developer Platform that is used by 250,000 web publishers and their 170 million users
  • Motors.co.uk, website for selling/buying used-car in the UK
  • Gibson, website of a manufacturer of guitars and other musical instruments
  • BlackBoard, website of an online education company, developed by Atom Group
* Please let me know if you are aware of another high-loaded website running on Kentico CMS.

1. NewsMax.com

Each month NewsMax provides over 6 million Americans with the latest news, investigations and commentaries. Ayush Chaturvedi from NewsMax will speak about Kentico CMS performance and its optimization at the upcoming Kentico Connection Conference. This is in brief what he says about it:

“We use Kentico CMS for our news websites Newsmax and Moneynews. These are High availability and High traffic sites built in one CMS installation. Kentico CMS in its 5.0 version with caching implemented has served us well so far. “

“We did have some performance concerns under high load which are now resolved in 5.5. Getting into numbers, it is because of flexibility of Kentico CMS and optimizations on Sql server that we handle 20 Million page views a month for Newsmax and 1 million for Moneynews. Normally our system gets 50 to 60 Requests per second. Under peak load this number doubles and the Database CPU stays in 20-30% CPU usage.” 

“All these numbers are without usage of partial caching. I believe with properly implemented code, tuning optimizations and 5.5 version of Kentico we can handle much more load than this.”

Ayush Chaturvedi, Systems Architect at Newsmax Media Inc.

2. Conduit.com

The free, award-winning Conduit Platform enables web publishers of all sizes to easily create apps using their own brand and content. Publishers can then distribute their apps both directly and via the Conduit App Marketplace and engage users constantly beyond the boundaries of their website. Yochai Levi, a VP Marketing at Conduit says the following about their experience with Kentico performance:

“In 2007 we decided to upgrade our site’s CMS due to the increased traffic volumes our site has been experiencing.   We chose to utilize Kentico due to its flexibility and scalability features.  Since then our traffic has grown tenfold and our site currently handles over 3 million unique visitors per month.  During this time Kentico’s performance has been exceptional and we have come to depend on its reliability and features.  In fact, we are so pleased with the Kentico system we are currently in the process of migrating all our other 3rd party community tools to run in Kentico, furthermore we will utilize SSO technology to enable a seamless integration of our platform with Kentico.  When completed our new Kentico-powered community will play a central role in our company’s social strategy.  We have full faith in Kentico’s capabilities and highly recommend the system to anyone considering a new CMS.”

Daniel Moshkovich, Marketing Manager at Conduit

3. Motors.co.uk

The motors.co.uk webiste is the UK's second largest new and used-car classified network. With more than 3,500 registered car dealers and around 150,000 used cars and 15,500 new cars featured, motors.co.uk is the leading alternative to Auto Trader.The website sees over 1 milion visits per month.

“Kentico has been used by Associated Northcliffe Digital (AND) for several years and in 2009 Motors.co.uk made the decision to implement the Kentico platform.

Since launching the new Motors.co.uk site early 2010, we have had great success with the stability and performance of Kentico. Also, the level of technical support we have received from the Kentico team before and after the launch of the new site has been second to none.

Kentico will also be used to run other Motors sites and platforms, which in total receives around 20 million page impressions a month”

Olli Astley, CTO, Motors.co.uk

Please read the case study to learn more about the Motors.co.uk website project.

4. Gibson.com

Gibson was one of our very first customers - they started working with Kentico back in 2004. The Gibson brand doesn’t need to be introduced even if you aren’t into music - the list of Gibson players is really impressive. Naturally, a website of such a widely recognized brand gets a lot of traffic. Here is what Cory Moore from Gibson says about it:

"Currently Gibson.com serves between 80,000 and 110,000 visitors and around 500,000 page views per day.  To handle the traffic, we have 6 medium sized web server instances and 2 large sized SQL server instances running virtually in the Amazon Cloud.  We also have all digital media assets stored in the Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3) that was made possible with a minor modification provided by the Kentico development team.  Our site is fairly dynamic, so we take advantage of the caching settings provided by the CMS to set short term caching for dynamic pages, and long term for more static assets and pages.  This reduces the resource needs by about 2/3s."

"To make the farm work, we use a simple HAProxy service that distributes the load evenly between servers, and the sessions state is saved in a shared location on a SQL server. "

"All of our development takes place on a local staging installation and is pushed live using the Content Staging functionality in the CMS.  This makes maintaining the server farm a breeze."

Cory Moore, Marketing Director of New Media, Gibson Guitar Corporation

5. BlackBoard.com

Several hundred pages, six different languages, and 150,000 unique page views in a day were only some of the challenges that Atom Group met when developing this educational site.

Please read the case study to learn more about the BlackBoard website project.

Where can I learn more about Kentico performance?

The official Kentico documentation provides one chapter devoted to the system’s performance and its optimalization. It also includes a step-by-step tutorial for troubleshooting of performance-related issues and a list of caching options.

Another good way to learn about performance optimalization is to watch the video presentation from the webinar lead by Martin Hejtmanek (CTO at Kentico). Martin also brings optimalization tips on a regular basis on his blog:

Finally, if you would like to see the exact numbers, you can download the performance report.
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Petr Passinger

Petr is the Senior Business Analyst, responsible for the mapping and optimization of the sales funnel and revenue cycle leveraging the Kentico Customer Experience Management solution for online marketing activities.

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