Kimberley Seldon, the founder of Business of Design, is an interior design professional who is well known in the design world. She has had three of her own TV series and is frequently featured in broadcast television programs and in magazines across the US and Canada. She has also published several Business of Design instructional volumes where she shares invaluable lessons from her extensive career in building and growing a design practice.
In 2006, she launched an online learning platform for professional interior designers, decorators, stylists, and architects under her Business of Design brand. “I created Business of Design because I wanted to transform the industry, one designer at a time. It's time to improve efficiencies, profits and client satisfaction", explains Seldon.
In addition to providing free podcasts and content on her site to an international community of over 3,000 free and paid members, the site offers a growing catalog of over 350 videos that can help designers increase profitability and grow their practice. These videos can only be accessed with a paid subscription.
What brought them to Cloudflare
Business of Design started using Cloudflare in early 2018 after they experienced unusually high volumes of unwanted spam traffic that began to hinder the performance of the site. Cloudflare’s DDoS protection was an easy win in helping them manage these types of attacks. As a key element of their “defense in depth” IT security strategy, Cloudflare allows them to identify suspect traffic that originates from certain regions or countries that have been known perpetrators. With the addition of rate limiting, Business of Design is now able to throttle any high volume requests and prevent them from degrading their hosted server infrastructure.
Business of Design features video extensively — posing a challenge for their original infrastructure, which streamed each video directly from the company's servers. As their video catalog and user base grew, subscribers (especially those overseas) were beginning to experience intermittent issues with video quality. Subscriber support requests began to escalate, and the company needed to explore a better way to support their video distribution needs.
Seldon asked her Internet strategy consultant, Randolph Klein, to help the company resolve the issue. “It was clear that they needed to deploy some kind of CDN service, and after I researched the new Stream product it made sense, since we were already using Cloudflare’s internationally distributed network for DDoS protection” explained Klein.
By enabling Stream, Business of Design was immediately able to tap into Cloudflare's global infrastructure — with the benefits of an integrated video management system, automatic encoding, and a custom video player. Today, all paid subscriber videos are published with Stream:
“Once we moved our video catalog over to Stream, user complaints about video quality pretty much went away”, says Klein. Business of Design’s content manager, Cheryl Horne, also reports that she finds it easy to upload new videos to Stream and then publish them quickly using the embed link provided by Cloudflare.
“We’re very happy with Cloudflare, it’s an incredible service that is not only cost-effective but helps us keep our site online and keep our subscribers happy” concludes Seldon.