Tag Archives: Moz

Riak for Advertisers

April 14, 2014

Modern day advertisers are faced with many new challenges to ensure they can provide highly available, low latency experiences to thousands of clients and partners, and millions of users. They are also tasked with serving large amounts of data all over the world and can experience significant traffic spikes. That is why advertisers are switching to Riak for their database solution. Riak’s redundant, fault-tolerant design ensures that advertising companies can serve data reliably and quickly. Riak is also built for operational simplicity at scale and helps advertisers quickly grow to meet peak loads.

Top Use Cases for Riak in Advertising

  • Serving Ad Content: Riak’s rapid storage and content agnosticism makes it ideal for storing ad content and handling influxes of ad traffic.
  • Session Storage: This type of data is naturally a good fit for Riak’s key/value model. This data can also be encoded in many different ways and can evolve without any administrative changes to the schema.
  • Mobile Experiences: Riak is ideal for the low-latency, always-available small object storage needed to power mobile experiences across platforms.
  • Global Data Locality: Riak Enterprise’s multi-datacenter capabilities allow advertisers to maintain a global data footprint while providing an always-on, low-latency experience, anywhere in the world.

Riak in Production

Riak is already in production at many top advertising and marketing organizations. Here’s a look at a few that have switched to Riak.

Tapjoy is a mobile advertising and monetization platform that is available on over one billion devices across the world. They selected Riak due to its high availability, low-latency, and multi-datacenter replication. They store 48TB of data in Riak and operate hundreds of thousands of reads/writes per second. Learn more about why Tapjoy selected Riak from the case study.

OpenX is an ad technology platform that serves trillions of ads. They use Riak for user and trafficking data behind their data services API. OpenX also uses Riak’s multi-datacenter replication across several data centers. Watch Anthony Molinaro (Infrastructure Architect at OpenX) talk about how they use Riak for their serve-time data needs.

Velti is a mobile marketing and advertising technology provider. They use Riak for their interactive mobile platform, including letting people interact with their TV by voting, giving feedback, participating in contests, etc. Velti runs 18 nodes across two data centers, which provides them with scale, durability, and availability. Their case study goes into more detail about the process of moving to Riak.

JBA is a digital consultancy that specializes in developing customer understanding and behavioral targeting. They use Riak as a core part of their behavioral analysis and remarketing tool. They store over 10 million objects in Riak and can easily scale up to account for holiday sales cycles or new product releases as needed. Learn more about why they selected Riak from the beginning from their case study.

Moz provides analytics software to track all of a website’s inbound marketing efforts on one platform. They support over 27,000 customers and 300,000 community members worldwide. Moz uses Riak to store customer campaign search engine rankings data. Learn more about how Riak outperformed Cassandra at Moz in the case study.

Data Modeling in Riak

Riak has a “schemaless” design. Objects are comprised of key/value pairs, which are stored in flat namespaces called buckets. Here are some common approaches to structuring advertising data with Riak’s key/value design:

Data Type Key Value
Advertisement Campaign ID Ad Content
User Data Login, Email, UUID User Attributes (often stored as a JSON document)
Image or Video Content Content Name, ID or Integer .JPG, .PNG, .GIF or other image format; .MOV, .MPG, .MP4 or other video file format
Session Information User or Session ID Session Data

To learn more about how advertisers can use Riak for their data needs, check out the complete overview, “Advertisers on Riak: A Technical Introduction.” To get started with Riak, Contact Us or download it now.


Moz Selected Riak Because Cassandra Simply Could Not Keep Up

October 3, 2013

Moz provides analytics software to track all of a website’s inbound marketing efforts on one platform. Dedicated to helping people do better marketing, Moz creates easy-to-use tools, tutorials, and educational resources for learning inbound marketing—and fosters the web’s most vibrant online marketing community. With offices in Seattle, WA and Portland, OR, Moz supports over 27,000 customers and 300,000 community members worldwide. For nearly three years, they have been using Riak to store customer campaign search engine rankings data.

Originally, Moz was storing campaign search engine rankings data in MySQL servers. However, as their customer base grew, they were struggling to grow their relational system at the same rate. Moz’s policy is to select the best tool for the job. For each use case, they test a variety of databases and select the best option based on the results of the test. For customer campaign data, their top priorities were scalability and having a range of querying options. Their decision, eventually, was whittled down to Riak and Cassandra. For customer campaign search engine rankings, this data needed to be written immediately to the database and accessed quickly and easily. Additionally, MapReduce capabilities simplified retrieving this data, and compiling summary information for their users. With delays between writes and reads and a lack of MapReduce, Cassandra simply couldn’t keep up and Riak was ultimately selected.

According to Moz CTO, Anthony Skinner, “Riak is absolutely the best tool for the job. It was extremely straightforward to bring into production and every upgrade we’ve done has been seamless. Since we’re dealing with real-time campaign data, time is of the essence. We have been very impressed by how quickly Riak is able to redistribute data across nodes, especially when we need to add nodes to handle unexpected growth spikes.”

Moz currently has an 11 node Riak cluster. With 27,000 customers, each with many campaigns, they see a lot of data moving in and out of the system. Since the data is collected and provided to each customer, Moz archives a small subset of this data and has opted to keep the long-term storage below 5TB. The cluster itself has a current capacity of 8TB, with 700GB nodes, and, given that adding a node is relatively simple and painless, they haven’t needed to pre-provision much excess capacity.

Moz has a polyglot setup and uses a little bit of everything. Based on Riak’s straightforward nature, operational ease, and scalability, they will definitely be looking to Riak in the future as other use cases arise.