Tradestops System for Tracking Stock

Itransition team developed app that tracks one’s stocks and sends emails informing the user about the right time to sell them.

Problem

Customer

RightWayTrader is a U.S. based company providing investment and trading tools for individual investors. They contacted Itransition with a request to provide support and develop additional functionality for their flagship product — TradeStops. The Customer expressed concerns regarding application’s stability, performance, and scalability. Itransition goal was to carefully review the code and find ways of its improvement.

Solution

System Highlights

  • Easy to use risk-free product for tracking investment positions.
  • No additional software is required, only a computer and web access.
  • 24/7 access for data check at any time of the day, from any part of the world, enabling to track the stock moves and minimize losses.
  • Part of a trader’s risk management strategy, since the solution allows reducing downside risks, keeping upside potential and reducing risks as the stock rises.
  • Email notifications are provided on U.S and Canadian equities and mutual funds using CSI Market Data and can be sent to email, cell phone, or pager according to client’s preferences.

The redeveloped solution is able to serve a larger user base due to the redevelopment of the nightly update process (a Windows Service that implements the logic of stock alerts calculation and delivery), which improved its speed about 20 times.

Results

Triple increase of the user base after a number of successful marketing campaigns, carried out by Itransition SEO specialists, from about 1.400 users a year ago to 5.000 users.

New stock exchange markets were added, e.g. London Stock Exchange, Toronto Stock Exchange, and some others, providing customers with more abilities to track their portfolios.

New data visualization features made the service more attractive for users.

After improvements had been introduced to the code, it became possible to develop additional services based on the solution. Later we have developed and released FlexCharts — a desktop software for designing and publishing stock charts founded on online data, and ChartCrafters — an online service that provides stock related content and widgets for publishing on third-party websites.

Process

Core Technologies

Itransition assigned a team of specialists consisting of a Project Manager, a Business Analyst, and a Developer. They analyzed the existing architecture, database structure, and codebase, and defined a future development plan and development activities to be performed to achieve all customer requirements.The preliminary analysis discovered a number of bottlenecks:

  • Website’s design was outdated and required some tuning or even redesign.
  • The front-end of the website was built on Classic ASP, which was in fact obsolete, and lacked scalability.
  • The subscription module was not suitable for any advertising campaigns and marketing activities.
  • The Historical Database (the database that stores information about stock prices, commodities, forex data, etc.) was poorly designed.

Performance was impeded by processing of customers’ alerts that was carried out through regular nightly updates based on JavaScript and executed via a Windows command interpreter.

Some of the steps that Itransition suggested and carried out were:

  • To extract the Historical database of stock prices into a separate database and optimize its structure for faster information retrieval.
  • To decompose that regular process of nightly updating  into two separate routines — (1) updating of the historical data, and (2) alerts processing in order to run them on different schedules and even on separate servers to allow higher performance.
  • To develop a separate API for Web Services to get data from the historical database and be able to build more services based on this data.
  • To redevelop the process of nightly updating as a Windows Service Application to improve their speed and stability.

Once this pre-development phase was completed, Itransition implemented all proposed improvements and released them live.

Besides enhancements in the business logic, our specialists redesigned the web site, optimized the subscription process and set up a number of advertising campaigns and marketing activities. The team also introduced data visualization, with Portfolio Charts as one such example.

The technical architecture of the solution is a realization of a multi-tier model. The layers of the system are the presentation layer (based on Classic ASP pages), business logic (server side or client side), the layers with web services, and  the database layer.

There are also several Windows Service applications built on the .NET technology that implement:

  • daily updates of the historical data on stock ;
  • calculation of alerts, and the business logic behind it;
  • email delivery.

The above architecture delivers a fast, stable and well-distributed system, which can be easily deployed on several servers for improved performance. 

Our experience with Itransition was very positive and extremely professional… Itransition is a very reliable company capable of foreseeing our development needs. There were several occasions when the final product came out in a way that actually produced better solution than we had planned for. Besides the product, we received a long lasting technology partner.

Richard Smith, PhD