Windows Azure SQL Database Marketplace
MSDN: Tell us about Givedon
and the services you offer.
is a not-for-profit organization based in London, England, that uses Web
technologies to raise money for charities. Users can access different services
on the Web, such as search, through our Web site or toolbar. We then raise
money through affiliate or partnership agreements, and then we donate directly
to the charities that our users choose. One hundred percent of the money we
raise from search activity goes to charity.
MSDN: What was the
biggest challenge Givedon faced prior to implementing the Windows Azure
Shane: We needed
a fast, scalable, and global platform to run our Web site and offer
lightning-fast performance to users-it doesn't matter how charitable people
are; if we can't offer a fast, stable service, people won't use Givedon.
However, as a not-for-profit organization, cost-efficiency isn't an option-it's
a necessity. We previously hosted the site on GoDaddy, but it was slow and
lacked functionality. In particular, we were limited in our ability to offer
even simple search functionality, and we also found it difficult to offer a
service in multiple languages.
MSDN: Can you describe
the solution you built with Windows Azure to help address your need for cost-effective
redesigned our Web site and migrated it to the Windows Azure platform with the
help of our technology partner BitStar. The architecture is simple: we use Web
roles, Windows Azure Table storage to store data, and Windows Azure Blob storage
to store files. We've expanded Givedon to include maps, news, images, videos,
and shopping, helping ensure that we have a more complete search offering.
MSDN: What makes your
founded in February 2010, we are a young organization. Yet still, with Windows
Azure, we can showcase a high-quality offering. Windows Azure has been a
critical part in getting our organization on the road to success.
MSDN: Have you offered
your services to any new customer markets since implementing Givedon on Windows
Shane: Yes. Thanks
to Windows Azure, we added functionality in 14 languages and support 24
MSDN: Have you also seen an increase
in money raised for charities since implementing Windows Azure?
Shane: The Windows Azure implementation has had a meaningful impact on
our organization. We are now much better placed to showcase our services and
offer charities a robust platform for developing a new fundraising channel.
Furthermore, feedback from other critical partners has been overwhelmingly
MSDN: What are some
of the key benefits Givedon has seen since implementing Windows Azure?
Shane: By using
Windows Azure, we can provide people with a service that is fast enough to
attract the most quality-conscience user. But even more importantly, we value
being on a cloud-computing platform that will allow us to scale rapidly and
cost-effectively as more and more users start to use Givedon; we can add new
Web roles and increase the responsiveness of our application with a single
click. Also, we don't have to worry about managing the infrastructure and can
instead focus on the next critical steps of our business: building partnerships
with consumer technology companies, deploying our service to charities, and attracting
Read more Windows Azure customer success stories, visit: www.windowsazure.com/evidence
Visit Givedon at: www.givedon.org