Adrian Poole, Director, Digital Natives UKI, discusses Rightmove’s recent move to the Google Cloud.
Rightmove’s mission is simple: make home moving easier. In 2020, its app and website saw over two billion visits from people looking to find the right property for them. In fact, the online property titan has had a bumper year, with over 100 of the company’s busiest ever days for visits all happening in the last 12 months.
led the charge in transforming the UK property market for both home-hunters and
estate agents since 2000, Rightmove is no stranger to innovation. Its mature
on-premises infrastructure had served it well. However, to meet increasing
demand for its services and continue its market-leading innovation, it needed
to take its technology platform to the next level. This meant finding a
solution that would enable the business to develop new features and update
existing services rapidly and cost-effectively, all while meeting its
so, boxes (theoretically, of course) were packed and the moving van was on the
way to a new life with Google Cloud.
Rightmove’s audience may use boxes to move, Rightmove is using containers
— of the Kubernetes kind, to be precise — and has initially started
building and testing using Google Kubernetes Engine (GKE), a managed,
production-ready environment for running containerised applications.
“Everything we do is to deliver more value to our customers. We make over 2,000
updates and additions to our services a year, so a key focus area for us is
improving time to production and, in turn, time to market,” explains Andrew
Tate, Head of Technology Operations at Rightmove. GKE will enable the company
to build and deliver new services faster, automate upgrades to improve customer
experiences, and, importantly, scale in line with traffic peaks. In the UK, that’s
at 8.48pm on Wednesday during the final ad break on prime-time TV. With this
approach it will also reduce its operational overheads, freeing up developer
time and empowering them to focus on experimentation and innovation.
As part of Rightmove’s own sustainability journey to net-zero, it wants to be able to run services more environmentally consciously. Google Cloud’s commitment to 24/7 carbon-free energy by 2030 was another key driver for the move. Through Google Cloud, the industry’s cleanest cloud, the company will be able to not only run workloads in the places that have the most carbon-free energy supply, but also ensure that it is consuming the minimum amount of power that is needed to support maximum users at a given point in time.
to the future
utilising Google Cloud’s data analytics capabilities to inform its marketing
campaigns, Rightmove is also looking to expand its use of BigQuery — our
serverless, highly scalable data warehouse — in order to transform the way it
uses data internally, and eventually create a more centralised data solution on
Google Cloud. By unifying different data sources internally, it will be able to
gain valuable insights that will enable its teams to make more effective,
data-led decisions and enhance its product set further.